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Harmonized Emissions Component (hemco) 3.0 As A Versatile Emissions Component For Atmospheric Models: Application In The Geos-chem, NASA Geos, Wrf-gc, Cesm2, NOAA Gefs-aerosol, and NOAA Ufs Models


Emissions are a central component of atmospheric chemistry models. The Harmonized Emissions Component (HEMCO) is a software component for computing emissions from a user-selected ensemble of emission inventories and algorithms. While available in standalone mode, HEMCO also provides a general on-line facility for models to compute emissions at runtime. It allows users to re-grid, combine, overwrite, subset, and scale emissions from different inventories through a configuration file and with no change to the model source code. The configuration file also maps emissions to model species with appropriate units. HEMCO complies with the Earth System Modeling Framework (ESMF) for portability across models. We present here a new version HEMCO 3.0 that features an improved three-layer architecture to facilitate implementation into any atmospheric model, and improved capability for calculating emissions at any model resolution including multiscale and unstructured grids. The three-layer architecture of HEMCO 3.0 includes (1) a Data Input Layer that reads the configuration file and accesses the HEMCO library of emission inventories and other environmental data; (2) the HEMCO Core that computes emissions on the user-selected HEMCO grid; and (3) the Model Interface Layer that re-grids (if needed) and serves the data to the atmospheric model, and also serves model data to the HEMCO Core for computing emissions dependent on model state (such as from dust, vegetation, etc.). The HEMCO Core is common to the implementation in all models, while the Data Input Layer and the Model Interface Layer are adaptable to the model environment. Default versions of the Data Input Layer and Model Interface Layer enable straightforward implementation of HEMCO in any simple model architecture, and options are available to disable features such as re-gridding that may be done by independent couplers in more complex architectures. The HEMCO library of emission inventories and algorithms is continuously enriched through user contributions, so that new inventories can be immediately shared across models. HEMCO can also serve as a general data broker for models to process input data not only for emissions but for any gridded environmental datasets. We describe existing implementations of HEMCO 3.0 in (1) the GEOS-Chem “Classic” chemical transport model with shared-memory infrastructure, (2) the high-performance GEOS-Chem (GCHP) model with distributed-memory architecture, (3) the NASA GEOS Earth System Model (GEOS ESM), (4) the Weather Research and Forecasting model with GEOS-Chem (WRF-GC), (5) the Community Earth System Model Version 2 (CESM2), and (6) the NOAA Global Ensemble Forecast System – Aerosols (GEFS-Aerosols), and the planned implementation in the NOAA Unified Forecast System (UFS). Implementation of HEMCO in the CESM2 model contributes to the Multi-Scale Infrastructure for Chemistry and Aerosols (MUSICA) by providing a common emissions infrastructure to support different simulations of atmospheric chemistry across scales.

Article / Publication Data
Available Metadata
Early Online Release
May 03, 2021
Fiscal Year
Peer Reviewed
Publication Name
Geoscientific Model Development
Published On
September 06, 2021
Publisher Name
European Geosciences Union
Print Volume
Submitted On
April 21, 2021
Project Type


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