In climate research, it is common to extract two-dimensional, horizontal grids from datasets for analysis and display. In addition, it has become increasingly common to extract and visualize other two-dimensional cross-sections, as well as three- and four-dimensional fields, from large datasets. The ability to quickly animate images of such data is providing a new perspective for understanding climate models.
This document describes the Data Retrieval and Storage (DRS) software library, Version 2.8, which defines a data format and access methods suitable for the data generated and used in climate model research. It is oriented toward use (1) with models generating very large datasets on supercomputers, and (2) with graphics workstations used for analysis and display of smaller subsets of data. This software is used extensively by the Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison (PCMDI) at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) for the storage, postprocessing, analysis, and display of atmospheric model and observational data, and is available to collaborators in the climate modeling and diagnostic communities upon request.