Sustained ocean observing for the next decade


Dear GAIC2015 delegate,

Last-minute information for those attending the GAIC2015 conference

Registration to collect a badge and registration materials will be available from 1600 on Monday 14 September, at the conference venue. We have just over 100 delegates, so we are hoping most people will register earlier than at 0825 on Tuesday.

At registration you will receive a printed copy of the schedule of talks and posters. You will also receive a USB stick, courtesy of JCOMMOPS, which will include a pdf of the full conference program including abstracts. That pdf is available for you to download here:

Icebreaker reception There will be an icebreaker reception, with wine sponsored by Teledyne Marine Systems, from 1800 on Monday, at the conference venue. The icebreaker is in the area surrounded by posters and our Exhibitors’ booths, next to the conference lecture room. Guests attending the Conference Dinner on Thursday are also welcome at the icebreaker reception.

Posters may be put on display from Monday afternoon onwards.

Poster and talk formats We expect to be able to display .pptx and .pdf talks on a Windows or Mac laptop. Poster display boards are 100 cm wide. Talks may be loaded at any time (but as usual we expect most of you will load them during the break immediately before your talk).

The first science session starts at 0830 on Tuesday 15 September.

The Conference Dinner will be at 1900 on Thursday 17 September. We presently have 75 registered for the Dinner. A limited number of Dinner tickets may be available at the conference registration desk, to be paid for in cash at a cost of 60 euros including wine. We will not be able to accept card payments at the conference. Online booking of dinner tickets will end at 1200 UK time (UTC+1) on Wednesday 9 September.

We look forward to seeing you in Galway.


Go Ship Logo         Argo logo          The International Ocean Carbon Coordination Project logo

"Sustained ocean observing for the next decade"

A combined GO-SHIP/Argo/ IOCCP conference on physical and biogeochemical measurements of the water column

14 – 18 September 2015
Galway, Ireland

The conveners have great pleasure in announcing a science meeting to bring together participants in GO-SHIP, Argo and IOCCP, with the particular purpose of reviewing and stimulating further research that exploits the synergies among the sponsoring programs. The paragraphs below highlight some science themes that span the programs, and some questions that might be addressed during the conference. Ultimately the scope and content of the conference will be determined around the abstracts submitted.


The three sponsoring programs for this conference promote and coordinate sustained observations of the water column to reveal the changing physics, chemistry and biology of the ocean. Argo began with a focus on physical properties of the upper 2000 metres of the ocean. GO-SHIP covers the full water column, with repeat physical and biogeochemical measurements from research ships. The focus of IOCCP is on coordination of ocean carbon and marine biogeochemistry observations, including data from research ships and other platforms. Each program has established maturity in its own field. Studies combining data from these programs are addressing new research questions and adding value to the individual programs. New technology means there is growing overlap in the research questions that each program can now address. It also presents challenges for how to implement and utilise new technology.

Questions about the climate of the global earth system present new challenges. Ocean observations must be used to provide ever better descriptions of variability and trends, leading to greater understanding of anthropogenic change. The ocean integrates changes in forcing on large space and time scales. This conference will bring together these programs that make sustained observations of the water column on global scales, showcasing the individual programs as well as the synergies among them. An additional focus of the conference will be the future opportunities presented by these programs: in particular the technological development of Argo into the realms of Deep and Bio-Argo. Deep and Bio Argo measurements will supplement GO-SHIP and IOCCP observations in new ways. In turn, these new measurements will depend on ship-borne programs for calibration and data quality assurance of the new float data. Oceanographers are entering a new and exciting phase of ocean exploration. It is timely to bring together scientists from the communities that will enact the next phase of the revolution.

Science themes/synergies and questions

The conference will address questions about changes in the deep and upper interior ocean, physical, biogeochemical and biological parameters.

Science synergies among the sponsoring programs

  • Novel means of utilizing temporally sparse but exact along-track repeats (GO-SHIP) with spatially/temporally distributed data (Argo).
  • Use of Argo data to inform the representativeness of GO-SHIP sections.
  • Analysis/uncertainty of GO-SHIP cross-section transports.
  • Combining Argo and GO-SHIP data for basin-scale inventories of physical or biogeochemical properties.
  • Natural and anthropogenic trends in ocean interior properties as observed through these programs.
  • Combining upper (0-2000 metres) ocean volume (Argo) with deeper ocean volume (Deep Argo and GO-SHIP) to make full-depth analysis of climate signals.
  • Calibration of Deep Argo data using GO-SHIP data: the methodology required for Deep Argo will likely be fundamentally different from that currently employed by Argo.
  • Calibration/Validation of Bio Argo data (oxygen, pH, nitrate, and colour) using data from GO-SHIP and IOCCP.
  • New and upcoming sensor technology.
  • Development of proxies of biogeochemical parameters from Argo measurements using GO-SHIP/IOCCP

Science questions

  • What aspects of the climate system are addressed by our programs, and how should our programs evolve to make them more effective contributions to global climate observing ?
  • What new research questions can be addressed with emerging new technologies at the boundaries of the research programs ?
  • Are there gaps in sustained observation and how should they be filled ? For example, shelves, regional seas, and anywhere where the ocean depth is not ‘deep’.
  • What insights can we gain into Deep/Bio Argo design from analysis of GO-SHIP data ?
    • What is the signal ? (Time and space scales)
    • What is the noise ?
    • What can we learn about sub-decadal variability and trends from the most frequently-repeated GO-SHIP lines ?
  • What are the priorities for each program in the next 10 years ?
  • Do the communities attending the conference interact effectively enough to extract maximum value from the measurements made by each group ?
  • How do we facilitate future interaction between the observing and modelling communities to maximise exploitation of data ?
  • Are there other programs that can benefit from the observing platforms and data (e.g. genomics, census of marine life) ?

Structure and organisation of the conference

Registration will be open to 170 delegates, on a first-come first-served basis.

The meeting will run for four days. All talks will be in plenary sessions. Scientific presentations will be assigned to oral or poster sessions based on abstracts received. We are presently planning on 20-minute talks. There will be dedicated poster sessions.

There will be an opportunity for commercial exhibit stands integrated with the science poster sessions.

The organisation of the oral sessions will give priority to talks that highlight or exploit synergy among the observation types. These could present recent analysis or highlight future needs. There will also be ‘single program’ sessions that present the latest achievements of individual programs.

Plenary discussions: Sponsoring programs may request platform-led plenary discussions to address their communities, gather community opinion, etc. We propose a plenary discussion on how to ensure the contributing programs continue to stimulate one another. For example some extended discussion of the next few years design, evolution and implementation of Deep and Bio Argo, in relation to GO-SHIP and IOCCP.

Buffet lunches, morning and afternoon breaks, the scientific poster sessions and the Exhibition will all be held in a common open space.

Conference outcomes

There will be a meeting report documenting conference highlights and any resolutions agreed.

It is hoped that new working groups or co-operative initiatives will arise from synergies highlighted at the conference.