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PISM, a Parallel Ice Sheet Model

doi gpl cipism

The Parallel Ice Sheet Model is an open source, parallel, high-resolution ice sheet model:

  • hierarchy of available stress balances
  • marine ice sheet physics, dynamic calving fronts
  • polythermal, enthalpy-based conservation of energy scheme
  • extensible coupling to atmospheric and ocean models
  • verification and validation tools
  • documentation for users and developers
  • uses MPI and PETSc for parallel simulations
  • reads and writes CF-compliant NetCDF files

PISM is jointly developed at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF) and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). UAF developers are based in the Glaciers Group at the Geophysical Institute.

Please see ACKNOWLEDGE.rst and doc/funding.csv for a list of grants supporting PISM development.


Download and Install

See the Installing PISM on


Please e-mail with questions about PISM.

You can also join the PISM workspace on Slack.


Want to contribute? Great! See Contributing to PISM.