What's New Archive
In a study published May 19 in Nature, PMEL and University of Hawaii scientist Dr. John Lyman (pictured left above) describes how the upper layer of the world's ocean has warmed steadily since 1993. Data from Argo floats, deployed by PMEL's Dr. Greg Johnson (pictured right above) and others help greatly reduce the uncertainties in estimates of ocean heat content over the past several years.
Scientists and engineers from PMEL's Vents Program successfully flew an ocean glider for exploring for underwater volcanic plumes and eruptions in the South Pacific on May 8. Over the two day mission, the glider travelled about 50km and was "flown" by engineers located 5000 miles away in Washington and Oregon.
You can read more about this glider mission, including an update on the active underwater volcano, West Mata, on the Lau Eruptions blog.
The March 2010 (Vol. 23, No. 1) special issue of Oceanography focuses on seamounts, submerged isolated mountains in the sea. Seamounts are of volcanic origin, with some presently forming. PMEL scientist Bill Lavelle is guest editor and the issue also features the Axial Seamount and Northwest Rota-1 Seamount, discovered by the PMEL Vents Program.
You can read the current issue featuring many PMEL authors along with our partners at Oregon State University and University of Washington on the Oceanography web site.
Scientists from PMEL's Fisheries Oceanography program are cruising the Bering Sea from April 23-May 3 for the first mooring cruise of the spring season. Aboard the NOAA research ship Oscar Dyson, they are in Alaskan waters to retrieve and redeploy moorings, collect CTD (conductivity-temperature-depth) and other data.
You can follow the cruise and see pictures from the Bering Sea on the Research Mooring Cruise to the Bering Sea web page.
PMEL would like to congratulate Dr. Michael McPhaden for being awarded the European Geosciences Union 2010 Fridtjof Nansen Medal. This prestigious award in ocean sciences was given to Dr. McPhaden for his leadership in developing ocean observing systems for climate research and forecasting and for fundamental contributions to our understanding of the ocean’s role in climate.
Please visit the Global Tropical Moored Buoy Array web page for more information on Dr. McPhaden’s research for which he received this medal.
NOAA Vents scientists led by Dr. Bill Chadwick have confirmed that NW Rota in the Mariana Arc is still erupting and has been active on each visit since 2003. The team has documented major changes in the landscape of the volcano including a large landslide that occurred during the past year. During the expedition, scientists will be filming high definition footage of the eruption, collecting samples, and deploying and recovering instruments.
You can follow Dr. Chadwick and his team on this exciting cruise, which runs from March 16-30, on the NW Rota 2010 blog.
On March 16, 2010 PMEL launched a new web site to help those interested in the Arctic learn more about the longer-reaching impacts of the loss of Arctic summer sea ice with a new website, https://www.pmel.noaa.gov/arctic-zone/future/. Changes in the Arctic are not only affecting sea ice but models show that they can impact weather in the mid-latitudes as well, where a large part of the population lives.
For more information on the Arctic please visit NOAA's Arctic theme page.
On February 27, 2010 a magnitude 8.8 earthquake off the coast of Chile sent tsunami waves across the Pacific Ocean. Tsunami scientists at NOAA's Center for Tsunami Research (NCTR) modeled this event in real-time to help determine when the waves would arrive and the impact they may have on various coastal communities including Hawaii and the U.S. West Coast.
Please visit NCTR's Chile tsunami page for a tsunami animation and more information on this event.
In an article to be published in the scientific journal Deep-Sea Research I, PMEL scientists Sunke Schmidtko and Gregory Johnson, together with international co-authors, describe ocean oxygen minima expansions and their biological impacts. Through their global analysis of recent and historical oceanographic data, the authors find that tropical oxygen-poor zones expanded significantly in area around the globe in the 1990s-2000s compared with the 1960s-1970s.
For more information on recent sustained oceanographic measurements visit PMEL's Repeat Hydrography web site.
In a study published January 30 in Geophysical Research Letters, a multi-disciplinary team of researchers that included PMEL’s Phyllis Stabeno and Dave Mellinger described integrated biophysical data “from wind to whales” in the Southeast Bering Sea. Distinct patterns in production, zooplankton biovolume and the occurrence of zooplankton predators such as fin and right whales were related to discrete features in the annual physical cycle.
For more information on the EcoFOCI Program, please visit their website.