Links to related communities and frameworks

Many organisations and initiatives have been engaged in developing or using OpenMI. This page provides an overview of inititives,  integrated modelling frameworks and other useful standards. OpenMI members are engaged in many but not all listed initiatives.
The few lines of text on this page are quotes from the underlying websites.

Communities on Integrated (Environmental) Modelling   


CCA (Common Component Architecture)

The Common Component Architecture (CCA) Forum is a group of researchers from national labs and academic institutions committed to defining a standard component architecture for high performance computing.
The objective of the CCA Forum is to define a minimal set of standard interfaces that a high-performance component framework has to provide to components, and can expect from them, in order to allow disparate components to be composed together to build a running application. Such a standard will promote interoperability between components developed by different teams across different institutions.  

CUAHSI Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc.)

CUAHSI enables the water science community to advance understanding of the central role of water to life, Earth, and society. CUAHSI focuses on water from bedrock to atmosphere, and from summit to sea. CUAHSI will support the community to advance water science and to improve societal well-being by . . .

  • developing, supporting, and operating research infrastructure;
  • improving access to data, information and models;
  • articulating priorities for community level water-related research and observations;
  • facilitating interactions among the diverse water research community;
  • promoting interdisciplinary education centered in water science; and
  • translating scientific advancements into effective tools for water management and policy.

CSDMS (The Community Surface Dynamics Modeling System)

The Community Surface Dynamics Modeling System (CSDMS) deals with the Earth's surface - the ever-changing, dynamic interface between lithosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, and atmosphere. We are a diverse community of experts promoting the modeling of earth surface processes by developing, supporting, and disseminating integrated software modules that predict the movement of fluids, and the flux (production, erosion, transport, and deposition) of sediment and solutes in landscapes and their sedimentary basins.


FluidEarth (formerly known as OpenWEB) is an HR Wallingford initiative bringing together a community of specialists with the aim of researching and implementing integrated computer modelling approaches to environmental systems. In order to understand how pressures such as climate change and developments impact the environment we need model not just physical, chemical and biological parameters, but how these parameters interact to affect the whole system. Environmental systems couple many natural processes and simulating them accurately demands modelling them in a similar fashion.
Modelling such systems more accurately can be done in two ways: either simulate everything in one large model or link smaller models together. Fluid Earth focuses on the second approach: linking existing computer models together to form integrated compositions.
This is done by utilising the OpenMI standard for integrated modelling.

iemHUB (Integrated Environmental Modelling Hub)

The iemHUB is an online community resource that supports the development, evaluation, and application of environmental models. As a consequence of the interdisciplinary nature of environmental modeling, the iemHUB is designed to facilitate knowledge sharing, discussion and collaboration on models and tools that support multimedia and multidisciplinary analysis. The iemHUB provides a unique environment for model access, simulation, and teaching and learning about environmental modeling.

OGC (The Open Geospatial Consortium)

The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is an international industry consortium of more than 400 companies, government agencies and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available interface standards. OGC® Standards support interoperable solutions that "geo-enable" the Web, wireless and location-based services and mainstream IT. The standards empower technology developers to make complex spatial information and services accessible and useful with all kinds of applications.

PRISM (Partnership for Research Infrastructures in earth System Modelling)

PRISM provides the Earth System Modelling community with a forum to promote shared software infrastructure tools. The ever increasing complexity of Earth System Models and computing facilities is a heavy technical burden on the research teams developing them. The goal of PRISM is to help share the development, maintenance and support of standards and state-of-the-art software tools to assemble, run, and analyse the results of Earth System Models based on component models (ocean, atmosphere, land surface, etc..) developed in the different climate research centres in Europe and elsewhere. PRISM is organised as a distributed network of experts who contribute to five "PRISM Areas of Expertise" (PAE): Code coupling and I/O, Integration and modelling environments, Data processing, visualisation and management, Meta-data, and Computing issues. PRISM was initially funded as a project under the European Union's Framework Programme V (2001-2004) and its long term support is now ensured by multi-institute funding via the PRISM Support Initiative (PSI).

The SEAMLESS Association

The SEAMLESS Association can be seen as a continuation of the EU SEAMLESS project, which developed an Integrated Framework for Integrated Assessments based on linkage of individual components (models, data, indicators) that enables analyses of the environmental, economic and social contributions of a multi-functional agriculture and the effects of a broad range of issues (e.g. climate change, new policies, innovation).

Related frameworks and standards initiatives

CSTMS (Community Sediment Transport Modeling System)

The Coastal Sediment Transport Modeling System (CSTMS) is an open-source model that couples hydrodynamics (circulation and waves), sediment transport, and morphodynamics. The model will be suitable for realistic and useful simulations of processes that influence sediment transport in the coastal ocean, including estuaries, nearshore regions, and the continental shelf over regional length scales (10’s of meters to 100’s of kilometers) and time scales ranging from transport events to decades. The code will be written in modern, portable languages (mostly FORTRAN95) using a modular approach that will allow flexibility and extensibility. In addition to the source code(which will have an open-source license and run on most computer systems from laptops to multi-processor clusters), the project will provide model documentation, training, test cases, tools for processing model input and output, and demonstrated applications.

CUAHSI-HIS (WaterOneFlow Web Services & WaterML)

Web services are computer applications that interact with and exchange information with other applications over the internet. The CUAHSI-HIS uses a family of web services, called WaterOneFlow, that have been developed as a standard mechanism for the TRANSFER of hydrologic data between hydrologic data servers (databases) and users computers. Web services streamline the often time consuming tasks of extracting data from a data source, transforming it into a usable format and loading it in to an analysis environment. Web services format the data as XML and the specific variety of XML that is generated by the WaterOneFlow web services is known as CUAHSI WaterML. The specifics of WaterML are documented in the OGC™ Discussion Paper, CUAHSI WaterML [PDF; 296K; 86 pages].

ESMF (Earth System Modeling Framework)

The Earth System Modeling Framework (ESMF) collaboration is building high-performance, flexible software infrastructure to increase ease of use, performance portability, interoperability, and reuse in climate, numerical weather prediction, data assimilation, and other Earth science applications. The ESMF defines an architecture for composing complex, coupled modeling systems and includes data structures and utilities for developing individual models.

FRAMES - 3MRA (Framework for Risk Analysis of Multi-Media Environmental Systems)

FRAMES is the software-based modeling system (i.e., the infrastructure) within which collections of models and modeling tools (e.g., data retrieval and analysis) are developed and applied to real world problems. FRAMES allows models placed within its domain to communicate with each other, facilitating the passage of data, resulting in the simulation of complex environmental processes. 3MRA is the actual set of 17 modules placed within FRAMES that collectively simulate the release, fate & transport, exposure, and risk (human and ecological) associated with wastestream contaminants deposited in various land-based waste management units (e.g., landfills, waste piles).

HLA (High-level architecture, IEEE Standard 1516)

A high-level architecture (HLA) is a general purpose architecture for distributed computer simulation systems. Using HLA, computer simulations can interact (that is, to communicate data, and to synchronize actions) with other computer simulations regardless of the computing platforms. The interaction between simulations is managed by a Run-Time Infrastructure (RTI).

Kepler Project

The Kepler Project is dedicated to furthering and supporting the capabilities, use, and awareness of the free and open source, scientific workflow application, Kepler.  Kepler is designed to help scien­tists, analysts, and computer programmers create, execute, and share models and analyses across a broad range of scientific and engineering disciplines.  Kepler can operate on data stored in a variety of formats, locally and over the internet, and is an effective environment for integrating disparate software components, such as merging "R" scripts with compiled "C" code, or facilitating remote, distributed execution of models. Using Kepler's graphical user interface, users simply select and then connect pertinent analytical components and data sources to create a "scientific workflow"—an executable representation of the steps required to generate results. The Kepler software helps users share and reuse data, workflows, and compo­nents developed by the scientific community to address common needs.

MCT (The Model Coupling Toolkit)

MCT is a set of open-source software tools for creating coupled models. MCT is fully parallel and can be used to couple message-passing parallel models to create a parallel coupled model. MCT is available as a small library and a set of Fortran90 modules.
MCT provides model interoperability through a simple API. Two models that declare and use MCT datatypes can be coupled with a minimum of effort.

MIMS (Multimedia Integrated Modelling System)

The Multimedia Integrated Modeling System (MIMS) framework is a software infrastructure or environment for constructing, composing,  executing, and evaluating cross-media models. In this context "media" refers to different substances, such as air,  water, soil, and animals. There is a growing understanding of the  importance of cross-media environmental problems, such as harmful chemicals emitted into the air that settle on the land, wash into lakes,  and are ingested by fish and then by people. Unfortunately, the scientific, software  engineering, and computational challenges of studying and addressing such complicated environmental issues can be daunting.  The MIMS framework is  intended to address some of the software engineering and computational  issues. The framework development is part of a larger MIMS project that also includes development of scientific and modeling approaches.

OASIS/PALM (Ocean Atmosphere Sea Ice Soil/Projet d’Assimilation par Logiciel Multi méthode)

In order to efficiently represent complex systems, numerical modelling has to rely on many physical models at a time: an ocean model coupled with an atmospheric model is at the basis of climate modelling; a combustion model coupled with a radiation model allows the computation of a combustion chamber temperature. The continuity of the solution is granted only if these models can constantly exchange information.
OpenPALM is a software allowing the concurrent execution and the intercommunication of programs based on in-house as well as commercial codes.

OMS (The Object Modeling System)

The Object Modeling System (OMS) is a pure Java, object-oriented modeling framework. OMS allows model construction and model application based on components. This is a collaborative project active among the U.S. Department of Agriculture and partner agencies and organizations involved with agro-environmental modeling. OMS v3.+ is a highly interoperable and lightweight modeling framework for component-based model and simulation development on multiple platforms.
OpenDA (Open Data-Assimilation framework)
OpenDA is an open interface standard for (and free implementation of) a set of tools to quickly implement data-assimilation and calibration for arbitrary numerical models. OpenDA wants to stimulate the use of data-assimilation and calibration by lowering the implementation costs and enhancing the exchange of software among researchers and end-users.

TIME (The Invisible Modelling Environment)

The Invisible Modelling Environment (TIME) is a software development framework for creating, testing and delivering environmental simulation models. TIME includes support for the representation, management and visualisation of a variety of data types, as well as support for testing, integrating and calibrating simulation models.