Chapter 4 tells the story of numerical weather forecasting from its inception to today’s supercomputing algorithms. In 1922, Lewis Fry Richardson proposed that, since the atmosphere is subject to the laws of physics, future weather can be predicted by means of algorithmic calculations. His attempt at forecasting a single day’s weather by means of manual calculations took several months. In the late 1940s, John von Neumann resurrected Richardson’s idea and launched a project to conduct the first weather forecast by computer. The world’s first operational electronic computer – ENIAC - completed a 24-hour forecast in just one day. It appeared that accurate forecasting simply required faster computers. In 1969, Edward Lorenz discovered that tiny errors in weather measurements can accumulate during numerical forecasting to produce large errors. The so-called Butterfly Effect was alleviated by the Monte Carlo simulation method invented by Stanislaw Ulam for particle physics.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.