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Session Descriptions

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Detailed descriptions of the four symposium sessions are provided below. All sessions will be arragend in plenary over a duration of 3 days. For abstract submissions please refer to the "Abstract focus" dot-point list for further details.

Session 1: Overview and international context

Session 2: Operational Oceanography Infrastructure  Where are we now? 15 Years of Progress

Session 3: Key Scientific & Technological Advances - Scientific capabilities & data requirements and user applications

Session 4: A vision for the future of Ocean Forcasting



Session 1 - Overview and international context

Session conveners: Eric Dombrowsky (Mercator Ocean), Eric Lindstrom (NASA)

GODAE OceanView (GOV) was set up in 2009 as an international program to take over the legacy from the Global Ocean Data Assimilation Experiment (GODAE). In addition, GODAE OceanView has broadened the scope of GODAE by implementing new Task Teams and by widening its collaboration to established international and intergovernmental research groups.

The GOV Science team (GOVST)) strives to fulfill the overall GODAE OceanView objectives

  1. to lead the scientific development of operational oceanography
  2. to improve the accuracy and utility of the corresponding numerical prediction services
  3. to promote the downstream use of these services,
  4. to support the transition to truly operational services, and
  5. to demonstrate the value of the global ocean observing systems.

The GOV Science Team is an international forum in which leading scientists involved in operational oceanography share their knowledge and expertise in advancing operational ocean forecasting systems , discuss emerging scientific and technical issues and work together on suitable solutions. A review of progress made in improving the operational oceanography infrastructure will be covered in Session 2.

GOV has established five task teams which address specific topics of particular importance to GODAE OceanView, working in collaboration with external experts or representatives of other international research programs. Symposium Session 3 will cover the outcomes and achievements of the task team activities, which among other things will focus on the prediction of the marine ecosystem, of the coastal and shelf seas and the high resolution ocean atmosphere coupling.

GOV is following the GODAE concept of freely sharing ocean information and tools, and through its activities establishes links and collaborations with international and intergovernmental research groups and programs.

Abstract Focus - Session 1

This session invites abstract related to the general context of GODAE OceanView, its relationship with the international programs and existing structures such as

  • Argo
  • COPERNICUS / MyOcean
  • GOOS
  • OOPC





Session 2 - Operational Oceanography Infrastructure: Where are we now? 15 Years of Progress

Session conveners: Ed Harrison (NOAA), Mike Bell (Met Office), Hui Wang (NMEFC)


The goal of this session is to give an overview of the current status of operational oceanography, including the ocean observing systems, the operational prediction systems and the services they provide, and the exploitation of the analyses and forecasts by intermediate service providers in a wide range of applications.

The session is composed of 3 sub-sessions 2.1 - 2.3 detailed below:


2.1 National and International Efforts for a Sustained Ocean Observing System

Monitoring the ocean by measuring it involves many challenges. The challenges include development of suitably accurate cost-effective technologies, deployment of instruments, rapid dissemination of the measurements, monitoring of system performance and the coordination of measurements funded from different sources and collected for various purposes. The aim of this sub-session is to give an overview of the current status of both the satellite and in-situ components of the global ocean observing system and to indicate how they may evolve over the next 5-10 years.

The talks in this sub-session will summarise the current status of

  1. the global satellite observing system
  2. the global, regional and national in-situ observing systems

Abstract Focus - Session 2.1

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Status and future prospects for specific components of the observing system
  • New observation technologies being developed for ocean monitoring
  • Work to improve the monitoring, dissemination and management of the data
  • Coordination of observation programmes at regional, national or international levels



2.2 Evolution of National and Regional Ocean Analysis and Forecasting Systems: From Demonstrating Feasibility to Robust Services

The GODAE OceanView Science Team includes the leaders of many of the teams developing national operational ocean forecasting capabilities. These capabilities now typically produce real-time predictions and retrospective analyses for the last 10-50 years. The development of these systems was the core activity within the International GODAE Science Team and continues to be a core activity within GODAE OceanView. Over the last few years, particularly within Europe, a more disciplined approach to provision of services based on observation processing and monitoring & prediction systems has been developed and the techniques for providing access to the products have evolved. The aim of this sub-session is to give an overview of the current status of the components of these operational systems and the services they provide. The talks in this sub-session will describe thecurrent status of

  1. “national” global and basin-scale ocean analysis and prediction systems
  2. ocean analysis and prediction services

Abstract Focus - Session 2.2

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Descriptions of “national” operational or pre-operational prediction systems and observation processing systems
  • Analyses and forecasts produced by the above systems and assessments of their quality
  • Evolution and status of the services provided and service methodologies
  • Systems and methodologies for providing access to the analyses and forecasts



2.3 Overview of downstream applications & services

The raison d’etre of operational oceanography is to provide environmental information that will be of significant value to a large community of users. For example operational oceanography aims to support maritime operations, to improve safety and security and weather predictions, to help to protect the marine environment and to make better use of marine resources. In most of these areas intermediate service providers, often specialising in specific niche markets, have a crucial role to play in unlocking the potential of the analyses and forecasts. This work requires good understanding of the needs of the market sector and of the quality, reliability and limitations of the analyses and forecasts. The aim of this sub-session is to highlight successes and lessons learnt by intermediate service providers and to give some insight into the current value to society of operational oceanography.

The talks in this sub-session will each cover a number of specific examples from a broad market sector. The talks will describe the nature of the services provided, the drivers for the services, their impact, lessons learnt and future prospects. The talks are likely to cover services aiming to

  1. support maritime operations
  2. improve safety and security
  3. help to protect the marine environment and make better use of marine resources

Abstract Focus - Session 2.3

Submission of abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • We invite abstracts describing services that have been developed, the rationale and drivers for the service, assessments of the fitness for purpose of the analyses and forecasts, and examples, testimonials or analyses of the impact of the services.




Session 3 - Key Scientific & Technological Advances – Scientific capabilities & data requirements and user applications

Session conveners: Johnny Johannessen (NERSC), Eric Chassignet (COAPS, Florida State Universityi), Masafumi Kamachi (MRI-JMA)

In this session the goal is to project and objectively assess the scientific and technological achievements and outcome of the progress within GODAE OceanView during the last 5 years. The presentations will span from the scientific research and development via data requirements and validation to user applications and benefits. Steps towards improvements of operational ocean analysis and forecasting and the international coordination of activities will also be highlighted.

The session is composed of 6 sub-sessions 3.1 – 3.6 detailed below:


3.1 Ocean Modelling and Data Assimilation: Underpinning Ocean Forecasting and Reanalysis

Sub-session conveners: Eric Chassignet (COAPS), Masafumi Kamachi (MRI-JMA)

An ocean forecasting system has three essential components (observations, data assimilation, numerical model). Observational data, via data assimilation, form the basis of an accurate model forecast; the quality of the ocean forecast will depend primarily on the ability of the ocean numerical model to faithfully represent the ocean physics and dynamics. Even the use of an infinite amount of data to constrain the initial conditions will not necessarily improve the forecast against persistence of a poorly performing ocean numerical model. Similarly, one needs data assimilation techniques that are not only effective at combining model and data in a dynamically consistent way, but that also affordable computationally.

Abstract Focus - Session 3.1

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Numerical model development
  • Numerical model validation
  • Dynamically consistent data assimilation
  • Determination of model error
  • Numerical performance
  • Predictability
  • Impact of coupling (atmosphere, waves, ice, biogeochemistry)



3.2 Evaluating the Impact of Observations on Ocean Forecasting Systems: Dividends from Investing in a Global Ocean Observing System

Sub-session conveners: Peter Oke (CSIRO), Gilles Larnicol (CLS)

Demonstrating the impact of the global ocean observing system (GOOS) on ocean forecast and analysis systems is a key objective of the GODAE OceanView Observing System Evaluation (OSEval) task team (TT). The OSEval-TT aim to support the ocean forecasting and observation communities by demonstrating the benefits of ocean observations to forecast and analysis systems, by identifying emerging gaps in the GOOS, by quantifying the impact of “observing system events” (e.g., when a component of the GOOS becomes temporarily or permanently unavailable, such as an altimeter safe-hold event), and by contributing to the design and assessment of current and future observing systems. Presentations in this session will demonstrate the utility of different approaches used to evaluate the impact of different components of the GOOS using a range of traditional and emerging techniques. Information pertaining to the current status and suitability of the GOOS for underpinning ocean forecasting will be presented, including demonstrations that show of the benefits of different components of the GOOS – including satellite altimetry, sea-surface temperature and salinity; Argo, XBT, and the tropical moorings; and deep sea gliders, surface drifting buoys, and coastal monitoring platforms (shelf moorings, coastal gliders, HF radar).

Abstract Focus - Session 3.2

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Demonstrations of the impact of observations on ocean forecast, reanalysis, or analysis systems; showing initiatives for Observation Impact Statements (OISs) demonstrating the impact of observations on forecast systems in near-real-time;
  • Observing System Experiments (OSEs) quantifying the impact of components of the current or past GOOS
  • Observing System Simulation Experiments (OSSEs), or twin experiments, that quantify the potential impacts of future components of the GOOS, including studies comparing different options for future components of the GOOS
  • Observing system design and evaluation studies
  • Studies developing alternative methods (i.e. exploiting assimilation diagnostics) for demonstrating the impact of the GOOS on data assimilation models
  • Studies for applications on scales ranging from the littoral-zone, coastal- and shelf-scales, and basin- and global-scales



3.3 Validation of Ocean Forecasting Systems: Addressing User Needs for Accurate Information

Session conveners: Alistair Sellar (Met Office), Farbice Hernandez (Mercator Ocean)

Characterizing the forecasting skill, and the accuracy of ocean estimates from operational ocean forecasting systems (OOFS) is one of the goals of the Intercomparison and Validation Task Team (IV-TT) within GODAE OceanView (GOV). It is addressed through the development of scientific validation and intercomparison methodologies and projects, bringing a framework in which OOFS can compare the outputs in real time or delayed mode (ie reanalysis), and provide quality information to users. Activities include the definition of metrics to assess the quality of analyses and forecasts both for physical and biogeochemical parameters, or metrics related to specific –user’s- applications, and the setting up of specific global and regional intercomparison experiments. IV-TT international participants have been conducting two main projects, covering real-time forecasting skill assessment, and ensemble forecasting approach. In collaboration with CLIVAR reanalysis teams, they also contribute to the Global Synthesis Ocean Project (GSOP), assessing through an ensemble approach the ocean estimate over the past decade from reanalysis. This session will highlight advances covering the IV-TT activities.

Abstract Focus - Session 3.3

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Metrics definition for OOFS, covering forecasting skill, estimates/hindcast quality, specific ocean processes, user oriented application, in real time, or delayed mode, both for physical and biogeochemical parameters
  • Innovative diagnostics of the modeling, assimilation, or coupling components of the OOFS that provide new ways to scientifically assess the quality of the considered system, or the ocean products quality
  • Specific use of –new- components of the ocean observing system (remote sensing or in-situ) in order to assess more specifically the OOFS errors and product quality
  • Dedicated intercomparison projects that highlights some aspects of the IV-TT issues and interests
  • Science in support of scientific assessment of ocean forecasting systems



3.4 Ocean Forecasting in the Coastal Domain: Scientific Challenges and User Needs/Benefits

Session conveners: Villy Kourafalou (University of Miami) and Pierre De Mey (LEGOS)

Downscaling and extending predictability in coastal and shelf seas are two of the objectives of the Coastal Ocean and Shelf Seas Task Team (COSS-TT) within GODAE OceanView (GOV). Broad participation and international coordination of interdisciplinary coastal and shelf models nested in data assimilative large scale models are COSS-TT priorities. This session will highlight advances in multi-scale hydrodynamic modeling and integrated observational studies that aim toward scientific validation, prediction and operational applications of numerical models in coastal and shelf seas, leading to new understanding of multiscale nonlinear ocean processes. The session will also illustrate methodologies that lead to reliable coastal forecasts and applications (such as data assimilation, probabilistic approaches, influence of nesting, currents-waves and atmosphere-ocean interactions), Observing System Simulation Experiments and the impact of sustainable, integrated modeling and observational networks that connect local, regional and global scales. Presentations are encouraged to comment on forcing needs (including boundary conditions from GOV large scale models) and progress on attributes desired for biogeochemical applications and interdisciplinary coastal predictions.

Abstract Focus - Session 3.4

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Coastal ocean and shelf seas science and modeling in support of forecasting activities
  • Downscaling from larger-scale models; nesting approaches
  • Data assimilation and predictability
  • Observation-related issues in coastal oceans and shelf seas; integrated observations, observing System Simulation Experiments and objective array design
  • Science in support of coastal applications.



3.5 Marine Ecosystem Prediction: The Next Frontier of Ocean Forecasting – New Users and Societal Benefits

Session conveners: Rosa Barciela (Met Office) and Pierre Brasseur (CNRS)

During the past years, the feasibility and utility of real-time monitoring of key properties of the ocean biogeochemistry and marine ecosystems have been demonstrated covering a wide range of applications and societal benefits. To accomplish this vision, new observing systems have been designed, and new modelling and assimilation approaches have been developed for both global and regional implementations. The goal of this session will be to review the progress in terms of design and deployment in situ and observing systems dedicated to the living ocean, to identify the new scientific challenges of an integrated “green” oceanography, and to identify the products that can be improved scientifically in order to better serve the user’s needs.

Abstract Focus - Session 3.5

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Space-born and in situ observing systems dedicated to marine biogeochemistry and ecosystems monitoring; optimal deployment strategies
  • Innovative modelling of marine optical properties, biogeochemical cycles and ecosystem dynamics in support of real-time and reanalysis applications
  • Assimilation of physical and biogeochemical data into coupled models
  • Nesting of regional/coastal ecosystem models into open ocean monitoring systems
  • Applications of operational products in support of management and monitoring of marine ecosystems, fisheries and the carbon cycle



3.6 Coupled Ocean-Atmosphere-Wave Prediction: en route to combined ocean and atmosphere weather prediction

Session conveners: Gary Brassington (BoM), Matthew Martin (Met Office) and Hendrik Tolman (NOAA)

Now that operational ocean forecasting systems have been demonstrated to provide skillful forecasts, a new area of development has been to combine ocean, atmosphere, sea-ice and wave components into one forecasting system on NWP time-scales. The short-to-medium range coupled prediction task team (SMRCP-TT) was formed to coordinate the development of these systems, to gather evidence for the impact of coupling on ocean and atmosphere forecasts, and to help define the observational requirements for coupled research and prediction systems. The aims of this session are to provide an overview of the current status of the development of such systems, to present results demonstrating the impact of coupling on the accuracy of ocean forecasts, and to describe efforts to coordinate these activities internationally.

Abstract Focus - Session 3.6

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Development of coupled models (including any of ocean, atmosphere, waves, sea-ice coupling) for short-to-medium range forecasting at regional and global scale
  • Development of coupled data assimilation systems. Demonstrations of the impact of coupling on the ocean component of the coupled forecasts
  • Design of metrics for assessment of coupled forecasts
  • Other aspects of the development of coupled forecasting systems.




Session 4 - A vision for the Future of Ocean Forecasting

Session conveners: Clemente Tanajura (REMO), Andreas Schiller (CSIRO) and Pierre-Yves Le Traon (Ifremer/Mercator Ocean)

GODAE OceanView has carried forward the legacy of GODAE and has guided the development and international coordination of global operational oceanography over recent years as this symposium will demonstrate. It has also supported the development of regional-to-coastal reanalysis and forecasting systems for specific applications that usually demand very high resolution and a multidisciplinary approach. Numerous aspects of operational oceanography such as coastal oceanography, biogeochemical modelling and observing system evaluation still face many research challenges and require ongoing international collaboration. Equally important is the maintenance and improvement of the global ocean observing system to constrain ocean models and to best serve applications, strongly supported and enhanced by GODAE OceanView initiatives. Recent scientific and technological progress shows that significant improvements in the quality of marine services have been achieved but opportunities exist to further improve utility and uptake of operational oceanography products by end users. The aim of this session will be to review and evaluate the overall impact and success GODAE OceanView had on ocean forecasting in the last 5 years and to discuss challenges and research priorities for future activities.

Abstract Focus - Session 4

Abstracts for this session are invited to focus on the following areas:

  • Visions for operational oceanography over the next decade
  • Challenges and opportunities for the global ocean observing system
  • Key future research priorities in operational oceanography
  • Future priorities for enhanced user engagement
  • Future plans of GODAE OceanView and links with other initiatives: JCOMM, GOOS, WCRP, GEO etc.