EcoSIM is developing a numerically robust, multi-scale, and extensible ecosystem plant-soil-microbe modeling framework that can be used to evaluate observed results in BioEPIC, and can be extended to a wide range of land modeling applications. EcoSIM scientists will work to develop, test, and apply improved process representations, numerics, spatial scaling approaches, uncertainty quantification, data assimilation, and parameter estimation, among others. Process representations will include, e.g., microbial metabolism and thermodynamics, multi-trophic soil biology, soil physics and chemistry, plant dynamics, canopy air space, and robust coupling approaches between system components consistent with observations. This includes collaborations with KBase to create the data analytical workflows that allow researchers to leverage multiomic datasets for model development and parameterization. An important goal of EcoSIM is to develop numerical model modules that can be flexibly coupled, span spatial scales (soil pores, microbial cells, rhizosphere, plot, hillslopes, watersheds), and can be tightly integrated with co-located BioEPIC observational capabilities (e.g. EcoFAB, EcoSENSE).
Figure 1. The BioEPIC proposed plant-soil-microbe modeling framework has representations of several important classes of processes in soil: litter input and polymeric OM degradation; microbial physiology, microbial community structure, and macronutrient controls; trophic interactions; mineral-organic interactions; soil redox and pH chemistry; rhizosphere-bulk soil interactions; and soil structure dynamics and in plants: photosynthesis; xylem and phloem exchanges; radiative transfer; and canopy thermal and hydrological dynamics. Plant-soil interactions are separated between the rhizosphere and bulk soil in this structure via advective and diffusive horizontal transport.
Figure 2. Important soil biogeochemical interactions to be represented in the plant-soil-microbe model. MS is ‘mineral surface’, MOM is ‘monomeric organic molecule’, E is ‘enzyme’, POM is ‘polymeric organic molecule’, X is ‘microbial exudate’, and Z is a ‘complementary substrate’.