Project Info

Climate map of an extremely warm Earth

Piret Plink-Bjorklund

Project Goals and Description:

We are all used to the current global climate distribution, with warm and wet equatorial tropics, highly seasonal warm subtropics, temperate climates and the cold poles. However, at unmitigated scenarios we are predicted to have an extremely warm climate, similar to that what occurred ca 55-50 million years ago.  During such extremely warm past conditions, the Earth’s climate distribution was distinctly different, but no global climate map has ever been made. This project seeks to synthesize all available climate data and illustrate the extreme climate conditions by constructing a global climate map that will not only provide information about the past but also project what the future warming is likely to bring.

More Information:

Grand Challenge: Engineer the tools of scientific discovery.
Contact Piret Plink-Bjorklund for access to AGU 2021 poster

Primary Contacts:

Piret Plink-Bjorklund

Student Preparation


willingness to learn


flexible, max 10


The student will learn how to set up and conduct research projects, including scientific questions and testable hypothesis, how to plan and conduct work that ensures results, and how to disseminate the results by conference presentations or publications. The student will learn what characterizes current as well as extremely warm climates. The student will also develop techniques for spatial and temporal data analyses using GIS and other platforms. There will also be opportunities to learn machine learning techniques and to work with sample preparation, if there is interest for that.


The student will work closely with me and with a PhD student. We will set up regular weekly or bi-weekly meetings to monitor the progress.  We will together develop a research plan and decide on expected outcomes. The student is also invited to join weekly research group meetings and any activities. I will encourage the student to present at the department's yearly science fair as well as at a major conference, and to co-author a publication.


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