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Climate models use quantitative methods to simulate the interactions of the atmosphere, oceans, land surface, and ice. They are used for a variety of purposes from study of the dynamics of the climate system to projections of future climate. The most talked-about use of climate models in recent years has been to project temperature changes resulting from increases in atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases. All climate models take account of incoming energy from the sun as short wave electromagnetic radiation, chiefly visible and short-wave infrared, as well as outgoing energy as long wave infrared electromagnetic radiation from the earth. Any imbalance results in a change in temperature. Models can range from relatively simple to quite complex: ⁕A simple radiant heat transfer model that treats the earth as a single point and averages outgoing energy ⁕this can be expanded vertically, or horizontally ⁕finally, atmosphere–ocean–sea ice global climate models discretise and solve the full equations for mass and energy transfer and radiant exchange. This is not a full list; for example "box models" can be written to treat flows across and within ocean basins. Furthermore, other types of modelling can be interlinked, such as land use, allowing researchers to predict the interaction between climate and ecosystems. (via Freebase)