STARDEX - Statistical and Regional dynamical Downscaling of Extremes for European regions

Background and Goals

The project will carry out a systematic comparative review and evaluation of statistical, dynamic and statistical/dynamic "downscaling" methods for creating scenarios on the frequency of occurrence of extreme weather events. This is done by identifying and applying robust techniques for producing future scenarios for the frequency of weather extremes for European case studies up to the end of the 21st Century.

The objective is to identify and apply the best and most robust "downscaling" technique to provide reliable and plausible future scenarios for temperature and precipitation extremes for European regions.

Content time


Research area/region

  • Europe
Region of implementation (all German federal states)
  • Baden-Württemberg
  • Bavaria
  • Hesse
  • Northrhine-Westphalia
  • Rhineland Palatinate
Natural spatial classification
  • Alp and North Bavarian hills
  • Low mountain ranges left and right of Rhine
  • West German lowland bay

Steps in the process of adaptation to climate change

Step 1: Understand and describe climate change

Approach and results 

Comparison of different "downscaling" methods and application of these methods for development of future scenarios taking account of the IPCC emission scenarios (SRES) A2 and B2.

Parameter (climate signals)
  • Heat waves
  • Altered rainfall patterns
  • Extreme precipitation (incl. hail, snow)
  • Dry periods
Further Parameters 

Indices for temperature extremes, such as threshold values for hot days and cold nights, days of frost and longest heat wave; indices for precipitation extremes such as heavy rain threshold values, highest 5-day precipitation total, average precipitation total on a rainy day, longest dry period, heavy precipitation proportion and days per year, general trends, such as warmer climatic conditions with more heat and fewer cold extremes, as well as more geographically and seasonally variable precipitation.

Step 2a: Identify and assess risks - climate effects and impact

Approach and results 

The consequences of a changed intensity of extreme temperature and precipitation values are studied.

Step 3: Develop and compare measures

Time horizon
  • 2071–2100 (far future)


Funding / Financing 

funded under the EU's 5th Framework Programme for Research "Global change, climate and biodiversity within the Environment, Energy and Sustainable Development"

Project management 

Climatic Research Unit, King's College London, Department of Geography (Great Britain)


Cooperation with a total of 12 partners: in Germany involving the Institute for Hydraulic Engineering of the University of Stuttgart (USTUTT-IWS) and the Fachhochschule für Technik in Stuttgart (FTS - Stuttgart's University of Applied Sciences) STARDEX is part of the cooperation cluster with the MICE and PRUDENCE projects, which investigate future changes in extreme events as the result of global warming.


King's College London, Department of Geography, Climate Research Unit
2LS London
United Kingdom

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Fields of action:
 cross sectoral