Ongoing research project |
2015 - 2018

ESCAPE: Energy-efficient Scalable Algorithms for Weather Prediction at Exascale

ESCAPE Project logo

About the project

ESCAPE will develop world-class, extreme-scale computing capabilities for European operational numerical weather prediction (NWP) and future climate models. The biggest challenge for state-of-the-art NWP arises from the need to simulate complex physical phenomena within tight production schedules.

Existing extreme-scale application software of weather and climate services is ill-equipped to adapt to the rapidly evolving hardware. This is exacerbated by other drivers for hardware development, with processor arrangements not necessarily optimal for weather and climate simulations. ESCAPE will redress this imbalance through innovation actions that fundamentally reform Earth system modelling.

ESCAPE addresses the ETP4HPC Strategic Research Agenda 'Energy and resiliency' priority topic, developing a holistic understanding of energy-efficiency for extreme-scale applications using heterogeneous architectures, accelerators and special compute units.

The three key reasons why this project will provide the necessary means to take a huge step forward in weather and climate modelling as well as interdisciplinary research on energy-efficient high-performance computing are:

  1. Defining and encapsulating the fundamental algorithmic building blocks ('Weather & Climate Dwarfs') underlying weather and climate services. This is the prerequisite for any subsequent co-design, optimization, and adaptation efforts.
  2. Combining ground-breaking frontier research on algorithm development for use in extreme-scale, high-performance computing applications, minimizing time- and cost-to-solution.
  3. Synthesizing the complementary skills of all project partners. ECMWF and leading European regional forecasting consortia are teaming up with excellent university research and experienced high-performance computing centres, two world-leading hardware companies, and one European start-up SME, providing entirely new knowledge and technology to the field.

ESCAPE website

For more information, please visit  (for project partners, please use the ESCAPE confluence page)

Related projects

ESCAPE partners

ESCAPE combines expertise from world-leading global and regional numerical weather prediction centres, academia, high-performance computing centres and hardware vendors.

European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts
(project co-ordinator)






RMI Belgium

Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium (RMI)



DMI logo

Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI)


Meteo Swiss logo



Deutscher Wetterdienst (DWD)



Loughborough University logo

Loughborough University



Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC)


Poznań Supercomputing and Networking Center (PSNC)










Peter Bauer

Nils Wedi

Willem Deconinck

Horizon 2020