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Accessibility of Geodynamic Models – Teaching Materials Developed Alongside the Open Source Software CHIC

To investigate the interior structure, dynamics and evolution of terrestrial planets, numerical models of varying complexity have become an essential tool for many researchers. Modelers often struggle with outreach and accessibility, especially when the demographic includes students and scientists who are less versed in programming and modeling. To provide easily available teaching material, we have compiled a collection of several codes developed at our institution.

Firstly, we present an updated Version of the code CHIC, which is a collection of applications, spanning 1D parameterized interior structure and thermal-evolution models to 3D thermo-chemical convection models. The code will now be published under an open-source software license. The release will include an updated documentation of the code. Once released, we plan to update the codebases, if sufficiently impactful changes have been implemented.

Furthermore, we will release multiple Python codes, mainly as teaching material. These will include models of:

-          Tidal heat dissipation, for variable planetary systems.

-          Interior structure in 1D, based on the planet’s properties.

-          Thermal evolution in 1D, based on interior structure and tectonic regime.

-          Simplified 2D thermal convection with temperature- and pressure-dependent viscosity.

Instructions on installation, application and evaluation, are presented in short tutorials. We also provide several educational examples and showcases of common benchmarks. The goal is to create a framework for our institute to publish software related to modeling of planetary interiors. The demographic includes students, teachers and scientists, as the codes range from educational material to advanced scientific models.


Oliver Henke-Seemann1, Theresa Büttner1, Lena Noack1
1Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
GeoBerlin 2023