GCOS GOOS WCRP/OOPC IX/3
The Observations Programme Area of JCOMM is proposing to produce summaries
that show the degree to which global observations meet the targets set by OOPC for climate
measurements. These summaries will be produced by different centres but with a common
form. The first ones will be prepared for the last quarter of 2004 and will be made available
early in 2005.
The data system for Argo is progressing well. This year it is expected that the delayed
mode data will become available at the global data centres. In addition, it is expected that
regional data centres will begin limited operations. There will be some common statistics
produced by the data system that will allow a composite performance of floats to be made.
Some proposals are under consideration now.
Keeley described the implementation of a technique for the unique identification of
original XBT profiles and records delivered in real time. This has started in April with all of
the data coming through the US SEAS system. The Australians have part of their software in
place to contribute and they hope to come on line in a few months. An analysis of the
effectiveness of this procedure will be presented to both JCOMM and IODE next year.
Keeley showed sample data collected using CTDs that had been mounted on marine
mammals. When the mammals come to the surface, the data are sent through the ARGOS
system. Some of these mammals dive to 1000 m and the resulting profiles are typically 10 20
points. Some of these data are collected from regions close to or even within ice infested
waters. There is a growing interest by the PIs in making these data available even in real time.
ADEQUACY, NEXT STEPS, AND STATUS
8.1 Observing System Evaluation
This item was introduced by the Chair, and a presentation is available on the meeting
website. The OOPC has proposed an initial evaluation strategy based on estimating the
uncertainty in ocean climate indices, but questions remain on how to move forward with this.
How will the indices be selected? Should they be computed from products or from data
alone? These indices have not been routinely calculated for the subsurface ocean, partly due
to a lack of data. Who can we get interested in this problem?
An alternative strategy would be to decide a priori on the necessary space and time
accuracy, and try to estimate the local uncertainty of analyses, the approach taken with SST.
However, the poor sampling of the subsurface ocean makes this difficult since there is a lack
of statistical information. With assumed correlation functions and amplitudes, much could be
done from the perspective of optimal interpolation.
The estimation of uncertainties in existing ocean climatologies is another critical
evaluation strategy. If rigorous comparisons between the various global and regional
climatologies have not been made and documented, how can we encourage this work to go
The contribution of different observing elements to the overall system also needs to be
addressed. The tropical upper Pacific, with the moored arrays, XBT lines, Argo, VOS, repeat
hydrographic sections, altimeter, vector satellite winds, and microwave SST has been cited as
a region meriting such a study. The forecasting community is in a position to carry out such