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Starting at ESS group

On this page, new comers will find useful general and practical information. Many links with additional information are provided. In order to limit the number of visits to other pages and thus to make the reading easier, some material/links spread out on different pages of the wiki are duplicated here.

Introduction about BSC and BSC-ES department

BSC-CNS: The Barcelona Supercomputing Center - Centro Nacional de Supercomputación BSC-CNS is the leading supercomputing center in Spain. It houses MareNostrum, one of the most powerful supercomputers in Europe, and is a hosting member of the PRACE European distributed supercomputing infrastructure. The mission of BSC is to research, develop and manage information technologies in order to facilitate scientific progress. We specialise in high performance computing (HPC) and manage MareNostrum, one of the most powerful supercomputers in Europe, located in the Torre Girona chapel. BSC-CNS is organised into 6 core departments: Computer Sciences, Life Sciences, Earth Sciences, Computer Applications in Science & Engineering (CASE), Operations and Management. See a graphic of BSC´s organization structure here.

ES Department: The mission of the Earth Sciences (BSC-ES) Department is to develop and implement global and regional models and data solutions for air quality and climate forecasting and their applications. Just like other departments at BSC, the earth sciences department has a number of research groups. Atmospheric Composition, Climate prediction, Computational earth sciences (CES), Earth System Services (ESS) and General Earth Sciences are the groups within the Earth Sciences. Department.

Description of the ESS group

Knowledge and technology transfer, via tailored services, is essential to bridge the gap between science and its end users in key sectors of society (energy, urban development, infrastructure, transport, health and agriculture) via tailored services. Non-profit services are developed in-house (weather and atmospheric composition forecasting, and climate predictions) via projects in collaboration with public administrations, private contracts with companies or funding agencies, and spin-off companies that could exploit operational opportunities.

The overall aim of the Earth System Services Group is to demonstrate the ongoing value of climate prediction services, atmospheric composition and weather forecasting to society and the economy. The group actively works in identifying user needs that will partly guide research in the BSC-ES Department and aims to quantify the impact of weather, climate, aerosols and gaseous pollutants upon socio-economic sectors through the development of user-oriented services that ensure the transfer of the technology developed and the adaptation to a rapidly changing environment, especially of those highly vulnerable.

The Earth System Services Group has an interdisciplinary approach closely collaborating with all research groups within the department (Climate predictions, Atmospheric compositions and Computational Earth Sciences) and support groups at the BSC (technology transfer, communications, visualisation, education and outreach).

Here is the wiki main page of the ESS group :

Description of the other groups

Here are the wiki main pages of the other groups in the BSC-ES department :

Starting at BSC-ES department

Newcomers are invited to read the “Starting at ES” wiki page on this link. Here are the information provided on this pages (with direct links to corresponding sections) :

  • Some general information about how we work in the BSC-ES department (direct link)
  • Information about how to set up your workstation (direct link)
  • Information about GIT (a popular version control system used in the BSC-ES department, especially useful for involving several developers into projects, keeping trace of the previous versions of your codes, allow reproducible research)(direct link)
  • A list of useful contacts for some issues (direct link)
  • A brief description of some internal tools used to run simulations (some of them may be not relevant for you) and useful information about good practices in the BSC-ES department on the computational/coding side (direct link)
  • Some information about administrative tasks, related to your arrival in Spain (relevant for foreigners) (direct link)

Initial information to set up your workspace

How to set up your working environment Log in in your workstation, using the unique username and provisional password HR gave you after signing your contract. To do this, go to the BSC intranet Central Password area, log in with the provisional credentials and later create your own personal password.

Set up your email client Set up Mozilla Thunderbird. This is the email client we use at BSC. If you do not have Thunderbird on your computer (likely for laptop users), download it online. For a tutorial to set up Thunderbird email and to sync BSC contacts to it see this link.

Set up your calendar Your BSC email comes with your own personal calendar. We use the calendar to access each other’s calendars and check, for instance, availability for a meeting and to send meeting invitations. One of the first things to do is to subscribe your teammates' calendars. For a tutorial to set up and use your calendar and sync it to Thunderbird see this link. Subscribe to department and group calendar then other coworkers. Each BSC member has a personal calendar, and some have additional collective calendars. For example, Albert has a calendar for group meetings and to book meeting rooms (see below). You should subscribe to these important calendars:

  • Go to Albert's calendar and subscribe to ESS events (information about the ESS group biweekly meetings and other events)
  • Go to Albert's calendar and subscribe to ESS meeting room (to book the ESS meeting room)
  • Go to Gabriela Tarabanoff's calendar and subscribe to BSC-ES events (information about BSC-ES department monthly meeting and other events

Useful contacts when...

(duplicated information from here)

After reporting an issue to helpdesk, please do no forget to update the open issue list. This helps to track and have all the information on open tickets raised by the BSC-ES people to


Newcomers in ESS group (and BSC-ES department) have to add a brief biography explaining their academic and professional background. To have an idea of the format, here are the biography wiki pages of :

Newcomers also have to send an email to the BSC-ES department ( with a few words of introduction explaining (1) on which topic you are going to work, (2) with who, (3) in which office you are going to work (Torre Girona in the case of ESS people), and (4) please also add a photo of you so that people can identify who you are. After sending this email, the ESS leader will add you to the ESS mailing list (

In addition, newcomers will also have the opportunity to present themselves to the other other during (1) their first ESS (bi-weekly) meeting, and (2) their first BSC-ES department (monthly) meeting.


Regular meetings are organized at the level of the ESS group and the BSC-ES department.

ESS group meetings :ESS group meetings are organized every two weeks. They occur the Monday between 15-16h in the Severo Ochoa meeting room of Torre Girona. All ESS people are asked to assist these group meetings. Here is the link to the wiki page of the ESS group meetings : Agenda and minutes of ESS group meetings. Any ESS person can edit this page and add an issue to be discussed during the next meeting (please add your name into brackets at the end of your input). These meetings are organized as follows : (1) presentation of the newcomers in any, (2) review and discussion of the points added by the ESS people, (3) brief update about the status of the project proposals in preparation, (4) a 10-15 min presentation from one member of ESS.

BSC-ES department meetings : BSC-ES department meeting are organized once a month. The date/time/location is sent by email a few days before. It can also be seen by following the calendar of Gabriela Tarabanoff. These department meetings usually occur in “Aula de Teleensenyament” meeting room (B3 building of UPC, see here the location). Here is the link to the wiki page of the BSC-ES department meetings : Agenda and minutes of BSC-ES department meetings. As for the ESS group meeting, any BSC-ES person can edit this page and add an issue to be discussed (again, please add your name into brackets at the end of your input).

Besides these two meetings, newcomers will join and/or organize other meetings related to their work here in the ESS group. In order to limit the high meeting activity, it is to be noted that Wednesday is a “meeting-free day” in the BSC-ES department. During this day, BSC-ES people can request to work from home.

Weekly reporting

Each Friday, all BSC-ES people have to complete their individual weekly reporting here where they should report (1) their main activity during the week, (2) the meetings they attended (in particular the external meetings) as well as (3) any type of issues they faced.

working_groups/ess_starting.txt · Last modified: 2021/09/23 14:52 by avilamir