CICE has several interacting components: a thermodynamic model that computes local growth rates of snow and ice due to vertical conductive, radiative and turbulent fluxes, along with snowfall; a model of ice dynamics, which predicts the velocity field of the ice pack based on a model of the material strength of the ice; a transport model that describes advection of the areal concentration, ice volumes and other state variables; and a ridging parameterization that transfers ice among thickness categories based on energetic balances and rates of strain. Additional routines prepare and execute data exchanges with an external flux coupler, which then passes the data to other climate model components such as POP. For more details, including a full set of references, see the model documentation.


Source Code LACC-06-012

The CICE code is freely available under a CopyRight agreement. The code is available from our subversion (svn) repository.

The trunk and branches are considered development code and are password-protected. If you have a password and are logged in here, you will see a "Browse Source" button above. The tag directory contains the most up-to-date version of the released code. It is also freely accessible (to everyone) via subversion using the command 'svn co'. If this link asks for login information, try another computer. Your local configuration of svn is requiring the login, not the LANL server.

If you wish to collaborate with us on CICE development issues and require access to the password-protected areas, please contact Elizabeth Hunke.


Lists of publications either about CICE (supporting documentation) or using the code are available here.

CICE Documentation and User's Guide (pdf)


Atmospheric forcing data for 1997 are also available. These data files are designed only for testing the code and are not necessarily the best observational data. Please do not publish results based on these data sets.

1997 atmospheric data (446 MB compressed; 681 MB uncompressed)

Bug and Feature Tracking

If you need to report bugs or request features, first check the outstanding tickets. If it doesn't exist there already, submit a new ticket from the New Ticket tab above.

If you would like announcements about releases and other CICE information, you can subscribe to the cice-users list. To subscribe, send an e-mail to listmanager@… (listmanager at with the message "subscribe cice-users". We will have to confirm your request before you are officially added.

Release Notes

This model release is CICE version 5.1, an update to CICE 5.0.4 which was released in December 2013. As described in the updates links below, version 5.0 included a new thermodynamics model that prognoses salinity, two new melt pond parameterizations, an anisotropic rheology, form drag, bottom-ice biogeochemistry, more history output options, new restart formats, and many other improvements. Subsequent updates provided bug fixes and other enhancements. Version 5.1 includes new options for atmosphere-ice and ice-ocean stress along with a number of bug fixes and numerous changes necessary for coupling with the CESM, RASM, HadGEM and U.S. Navy operational models.


CICE version 5.1.2

CICE version 5.1.1

CICE version 5.1

CICE version 5.0.4

CICE version 5.0.3

CICE version 5.0.2

CICE version 5.0.1

CICE version 5.0

CICE version 4

Frequently Asked Questions


Last modified 7 months ago Last modified on 02/10/17 21:54:09

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