John Michalakes's home page


John Michalakes conducts research in software tools and parallel algorithms for efficiently implementing atmospheric models on parallel computers. He is currently the lead software architect for the Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) model. He has worked on the parallel PSU/NCAR MM5 (a weather model) and he was a member of the CHAMMPions Collaboration which developed the message passing version of the NCAR CCM2, a climate model. Click here for current resumé.

Medium- to long-term research goals involve development of Same-Source Enablement tools and techniques that will allow development and maintenance of a single source code that will run efficiently on diverse high-performance computing platforms. This includes source translation and RSL, a parallel library.


I am a staff software engineer in the Mesoscale and Microscale Meteorology Division of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, formerly a long-term visitor from the MCS Division of Argonne National Laboratory. Please address correspondences to: ( will also work)

work: 303-497-8199
fax: 303-497-8181

John Michalakes
Room 3006, FL3
PO Box 3000
Boulder, CO, 80307-3000

John Michalakes
Mesoscale and Microscale Meteorology Division
Room 3006, FL3
3450 Mitchell Lane
Boulder, Colorado 80301

Recent Work

  • MM5 Parallel Benchmarks (ongoing). Click here.

  • ``Performance-Portability and the Weather Research and Forecast Model,'' in on-line proceedings of the HPC Asia 2001 conference, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia, Sept. 24-28, 2001. Link to presentation (ppt).. Link to conference paper (pdf). There was no hard-copy proceedings for this conference.

  • ``MM5 Adjoint Development using TAMC: Experiences with an Automatic Code Generator, in proceedings of 14th Conference on Numerical Weather Prediction," with Nehrkorn, T. (lead author), Modica, G., Cerniglia, M., Ruggiero, F., and Zou, X., American Meteorological Socienty, 2001. pp. 481-484.

  • ``Parallelization of a Subgrid Orographic Precipitation Scheme in an MM5-based Regional Climate Model,'' with L.R. Leung (lead author) and X. Bian, in Computational Science -- ICCS 2001, Springer, New York, 2001, pp. 195-203.
    Also Preprint ANL/MCS-P876-0301, March 2001. Click here for abstract.

  • ``Development of a Next Generation Regional Weather Research and Forecast Model,'' with S. Chen, J. Dudhia, L. Hart, J. Klemp, J. Middlecoff, in Developments in Teracomputing: Proceedings of the Ninth ECMWF Workshop on the Use of High Performance Computing in Meteorology, November 2000, Reading U.K. Eds. Walter Zwieflhofer and Norbert Kreitz. World Scientific, Singapore, 2001. pp. 269-276.
    Click here for www version. ANL Preprint Number ANL/MCS-P868-0101.

  • ``Performance and Maintainability: Conflicting Concerns in Large Community Weather Models.'' University of Chicago Computational Institute seminar, January 12, 2001. Click here for abstract. Click here for slides.

  • ``The Same Source Parallel MM5,'' Journal of Scientific Programming, 8 (2000), 5-12. PostScript (649586 bytes).

  • ``Design of a next-generation weather research and forecast model,'' with J.Dudhia, D. Gill, J. Klemp, and W. Skamarock, in Towards Teracomputing: proceedings of the Eighth Workshop on the Use of Parallel Processors in Meteorology, European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecasting, Reading, U.K., November 16-20, 1998. This is ANL/MCS preprint number ANL/MCS-P735-1198. Versions available: Postscript, MSWord, and HTML. Slides from the conference presentation on 16 Oct 1998 are available here.

  • Parallel Computing, Special Issue on Applications: ``Parallel Computing in Regional Weather Modeling.'' C. Baillie, J. Michalakes and R. Skålin, eds. Vol. 23, No. 14, December 1997.

  • Regional Weather Modeling on Parallel Computers, with C. Baillie and R. Skålin. Preface to special issue of Parallel Computing, Vol. 23, No. 14, December 1997, pp. 2135-2142. Gzipped PostScript (38 KB).

  • MM90: A Scalable Parallel Implementation of the Penn State/NCAR Mesoscale Model (MM5). Parallel Computing, Vol. 23, No. 14, December 1997, pp. 2173-2186 ; also ANL/MCS-P659-0597. Gzipped PostScript (122 KB).

  • Weather Modeling on Parallel Computers (the parallel PSU/NCAR MM5)

  • Same-Source Parallel Implementation of the PSU/NCAR MM5. in proceedings of the Symposium on Regional Weather Prediction on Parallel Computer Environments, University of Athens, Greece, October 15-17, 1997. Proceedings paper (preprint ANL/MCS-P702-1297) in HTML or Postsc ript .

  • Runtime System Library (RSL) for parallelization of gridded weather models with nesting.

  • FLIC: A Translator for Same-Source Parallel Implementation of Regular Grid Applications (ANL/MCS-TM-233).

  • Study of load balancing in CCM
  • Click here for other papers.


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