European Center for Geodynamics and Seismology | Centre Européen de Géodynamique et de Séismologie

GOCINA Workshop 2005

The workshop GOCINA: Improving modelling of ocean transport and climate prediction in the North Atlantic region using GOCE gravimetry” was held on April 13-15, 2005, at the NOVOTEL in Luxembourg-Kirchberg.

This page was last updated on March 24, 2005

The GOCINA programme is now available in PDF format.



Scope of the Workshop

The ocean transport through the straits between Greenland and the UK is
known to play an important role in the global circulation.

Gulf Stream
water flows into the Nordic seas and feeds the formation of heavy bottom
water that returns back into the Atlantic Ocean. A change of the Gulf
Stream with even a possible shut down of the heat transport towards high
latitudes would have a huge impact on the North European climate.

It is very possible that as global warming takes hold, the climate of Northern
Europe will buck the trend and become cooler. The mechanism for this
would involve the weakening or collapse of the Northward heat transport
between Europe and Greenland by the mean ocean circulation. Furthermore,
changes in the mean flows and transports in deep waters may change ocean
upwelling and transports of larvae, both relevant for fish populations.

The central quantity bridging the geoid and the ocean circulation is the
mean dynamic topography, which is the difference between the mean sea
surface and the geoid. The mean dynamic topography provides the absolute
reference surface for the ocean circulation and is, in particular,
expected to improve the determination of the mean ocean circulation. The
determination of the mean circulation will, in turn, advance the
understanding of the role of the ocean mass and heat transport in
climate change.

The workshop cover topics related to the determination
of those central quantities and developing methods and recommendations
for the joint exploitation of the satellite missions for ocean
circulation studies and associated climate modelling and operational
data assimilation. Together with radar altimetry from satellite missions
such as ENVISAT and JASON, gravity field missions such as GRACE and in
particular GOCE will be important.

Scientific Committee

Per Knudsen, Copenhagen
Johnny Johannessen, Bergen
Reiner Rummel/Thomas Gruber, Munich
Detlef Stammer, Hamburg and
Tonie van Dam, ECGS Luxembourg

Local Organizing Committee

  • Olivier Francis, ECGS
  • Tonie van Dam, ECGS
  • Patricia Codran, ECGS
  • Proceedings and Publications

    Proceedings of the workshop to be published in ‘Cahiers du Centre Europeen de Geodynamique et de Seismologie’. This is a requirement
    for Luxembourg funding.

    Preliminary Workshop Plan

    Session 1: Improving the geoid
    • The session will focus recent improvements in the data acquisition, merging of airborne and ship data, and geoid determination and, furthermore, highlight the expected contribution of GOCE satellite mission.
    Session 2: Cal/val of GOCE
    • The session will focus on technical issues related to the processing of GOCE data as well as product specifications.
    Session 3: Ocean transport in-situ
    • The session will focus on the oceanography of the GOCINA region, especially the characteristics of the circulation and heat transport as observed from in-situ measurements.
    Session 4: MSS and MDT
    • The session will focus on recent improvements in the computation of the mean sea surface based on satellite altimetry and on how the mean dynamic topography in the GOCINA region has been estimated using various approaches.
    Session 5: Ocean circulation modelling
    • The session will focus on ocean circulation modelling and assimilation of mean dynamic topography information and how the FOAM, MERCATOR, and TOPAZ plan to include that in their operational predictions.
    Session 6: Climate prediction
    • The session will focus on prediction of the circulation and heat transport in the GOCINA region and its role in the Northern Europe climate.
    Session 7: GUTS and user recommendations
    • The session will focus on the GUTS developments of algorithms for the exploitation of GOCE level 2 and ERS-ENVISAT altimetry for the generation of a user toolbox including, among others, an ocean absolute dynamic topography product.