1Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Hamburg, Germany
2German Weather Service, Offenbach am Main, Germany
3MOX – Department of Mathematics F. Brioschi, Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy
4International Max Planck Research School on Earth System Modelling, Hamburg, Germany
*now at: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA, USA
Abstract. A hydrostatic atmospheric dynamical core is developed for the purpose of global climate modelling. The model applies finite-difference methods to discretize the primitive equations on spherical icosahedral grids, using C-type staggering with triangles as control volumes for mass. This paper documents the numerical methods employed in the baseline version of the model, discusses their properties, and presents results from various idealized test cases. The evaluation shows that the new dynamical core is able to correctly represent the evolution of baroclinic eddies in the atmosphere as well as their role in heat and momentum transport. The simulations compare well with the reference solutions, and show a clear trend of convergence as the horizontal resolution increases. First results from two aqua-planet simulations are also presented, in which the equatorial wave spectra derived from tropical precipitation agree well with those simulated by a spectral transform model. The new dynamical core thus provides a good basis for further model development. Certain aspects of the model formulation that need further investigation and improvement are also pointed out.