Information on the Argo Ocean Monitoring Network

In order to let readers of Climate Science have a clear idea of the spatial distribution of the upper ocean temperature distributions that were used so effectively in the Lyman et al 2006 study “Recent Cooling of the Upper Oceanâ€? [see and see ] information on the Argo monitoring network is provided below.

A summary of Argo is available (see). Excerpts from the Argo webiste are,

“Argo is a global array of 3,000 free-drifting profiling floats that measures the temperature and salinity of the upper 2000 m of the ocean. This allows, for the first time, continuous monitoring of the temperature, salinity, and velocity of the upper ocean, with all data being relayed and made publicly available within hours after collection.”

The objectives of Argo are:

“It will provide a quantitative description of the changing state of the upper ocean and the patterns of ocean climate variability from months to decades, including heat and freshwater storage and transport.

The data will enhance the value of the Jason altimeter through measurement of subsurface temperature, salinity, and velocity, with sufficient coverage and resolution to permit interpretation of altimetric sea surface height variability.

Argo data will be used for initializing ocean and coupled ocean-atmosphere forecast models, for data assimilation and for model testing.

A primary focus of Argo is to document seasonal to decadal climate variability and to aid our understanding of its predictability. A wide range of applications for high-quality global ocean analyses is anticipated. ”

The data density of the Argo network can be viewed here.

The Lyman et al 2006 GRL paper demonstrates the value of this data, including the demonstration that when multi-decadal climate predictions are compared with real-world data, the models can fail to explain observed climate variability and change.

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