Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Ocean satellite launch critical to Australian science

24.06.2008
A new earth observing satellite being launched in California today will help guide future Australian ocean and climate science.

Jason-2, or the Ocean Surface Topography Mission (OSTM), is a joint venture between NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the French Space Agency (CNES) and the European Meteorology Satellite service (EUMETSAT).

"There's plenty resting on this satellite in terms of where our ocean and climate science is going," says Dr David Griffin, an oceanographer from the CSIRO Wealth from Oceans National Research Flagship and a member of the international Science Team which advises on satellite altimeter missions.

"Jason-2 provides a lifeline between space and some very significant science projects that are integral to our capabilities in understanding how the oceans are changing and particularly future ocean forecasting products," he says.

With an orbit 1336 kilometres above the Earth’s surface, Jason-2 will be one of three satellites equipped with special altimetry sensors to precisely measure sea level, and indirectly infer ocean heat content changes.

This information is also important for: Australia’s evolving ocean forecasting system, BLUElink; sea safety and offshore oil and gas operations; measuring global sea level rise; tracking large-scale ocean-atmosphere phenomena like El Niño and La Niña and marine mammals feeding in nutrient-rich ocean eddies; and forecasting currents for sports events such as the Sydney-Hobart yacht race.

“Jason-2 provides a lifeline between space and some very significant science projects that are integral to our capabilities in understanding how the oceans are changing and particularly future ocean forecasting products,"

he says.High quality satellite altimetry started with the TOPEX/Poseidon mission (1992-2005), and continued with Jason-1 (2001-to the present). The altimeters measure sea surface height, from which we can estimate the strength and direction of ocean currents and also map sea level rise.

Australian scientists contribute to the science mission in a number of ways, including calibration of the sensors on board the satellite. CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, in conjunction with the University of Tasmania, the Bureau of Meteorology’s National Tidal Centre and Geoscience Australia has been running a calibration facility at Burnie (NW Tasmania) since 1992. This was enhanced by the deployment of a French transportable Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) system at Burnie earlier this year. Burnie is the only absolute calibration site in the Southern Hemisphere. The other two main sites are off the coast of California, and in the Mediterranean Sea.

The satellite will provide 95 per cent coverage of the world's ice-free oceans, repeating its coverage every 10 days and measuring sea surface height with an accuracy of about 3 centimetres.

Australian science agencies using data from the new satellite include the Centre for Australian Weather and Climate Research – a partnership of CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology – and the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystem Cooperative Research Centre.

Craig Macaulay | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.csiro.au

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht The TU Ilmenau develops tomorrow’s chip technology today
27.04.2017 | Technische Universität Ilmenau

nachricht Five developments for improved data exploitation
19.04.2017 | Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH, DFKI

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Fighting drug resistant tuberculosis – InfectoGnostics meets MYCO-NET² partners in Peru

28.04.2017 | Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Wireless power can drive tiny electronic devices in the GI tract

28.04.2017 | Medical Engineering

Ice cave in Transylvania yields window into region's past

28.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

Nose2Brain – Better Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

28.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>