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02 July 2008
CASIX held their final science meeting at the Geological Society in London on 2nd July 2008. The meeting entitled "Uncertainties of the Ocean Carbon Cycle: understanding changes in fluxes and ecosystems" presented latest results from the CASIX five-year programme to a mixed audience of scientists and policy makers. The meeting concluded with a discussion on how ocean carbon cycle research can be better used to guide and inform policy. A report of the meeting will follow shortly and for further information and presentations please click here.
01 April 2008
The National Centre for Earth Observation (NCEO) was commenced its research programme today. This new NERC centre is the successor to the NERC Centre of Excellence in Earth Observation programme and will seek to build on the success of CASIX and the other Centres. NCEO is headed up by Prof. Alan O'Neill from the University of Reading as Director. The research is organised around 8 research themes: climate, carbon cycle, atmospheric composition, hazardous weather, cryosphere, dynamic earth, data assimilation and EO informatics. The carbon cycle theme will build upon CASIX advances in the areas of air-sea fluxes, phytoplankton community structure and primary production, bio-physical interactions, data assimilation and model reanalysis.
31 March 2008
Having succesfully led CASIX through its five-year funding phase, Prof. Jim Aiken has decided to retire (for the second time!). Dr Nick Hardman-Mountford will take up the reigns as Acting Director until completion of the CASIX project later this year. Prof. Aiken has been the driving force behind CASIX and many other intitiatives in marine science over the past 38 years, most notably the Atlantic Meridional Transect programme, the Undulating Oceanographic Recorder and the development of ocean colour satellite research in the UK. He is looking forward to spending more time on the golf course (although we can't keep him away from the office still!).
21 February 2008
A one day scientific meeting was held to celebrate the research career of CASIX Director Prof. Jim Aiken. The meeting "Illuminating Ocean Ecosystems" focused on bio-optics of the ocean carbon cycle and was held in Plymouth on 19th February 2008. For presentations and images from the day please click here.
21 January 2008
CASIX has received 2 PhD studentships from the NERC algorithm allocation for 2008. Details of topics can be found on the Studentships page.
20 December 2008
The CASIX Annual Science Meeting was held in Exeter from 17-18 December 2007, hosted by the Met Office. The meeting commenced with talks by final year students on "Convective gas exchange in the tropical Atlantic" (Chris Jeffrey, Southampton), "Novel techniques to estimate primary production" (Kathryn Barker, Plymouth) and "Remote sensing of chlorophyll concentrations in turbid waters" (Elizabeth Kyte, Bangor), followed by some shorter presentations and posters by Vivian Scott (Edinburgh), Elizabeth Jones (UEA), Rhian Evans (Leicester), Diane Knappett (Leicester) and Bob Brewin (Plymouth). David McKee, a CASIX-affiliated NERC research fellow at the University of Strathclyde, talked on advances in bio-optics.
The evening commenced with a drinks reception and Oxford Union-style debate with Jim Aiken (PML) proposing the motion "The Oceans are the heart and lungs of the global C-cycle and the Earth’s climate system", seconded by Nick Hardman-Mountford (PML). The motion was opposed by Peter Cox (Exeter), who spoke in favour of the terrestrial biosphere, seconded by Chris Merchant (Edinburgh) and contributions were also made from the floor. The final result was declared a draw and we adjourned for a CASIX Christmas dinner.
The following day commenced with a keynote address by Andrew Watson (UEA) on "Current state of knowledge of the Ocean Carbon Cycle", which highlighted the need for sustained funding of in situ observations. This was followed by updates of progress in the main science themes.
22 October 2007
Further evidence for the decline of the oceans' historical role as an important sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide is supplied by new research by environmental scientists from the University of East Anglia, which includes Prof. Andrew Watson, a CASIX Principle Investigator.
Since the industrial revolution, much of the CO2 we have released into the atmosphere has been taken up by the world’s oceans which act as a strong ‘sink’ for the emissions. This has slowed climate change. Without this uptake, CO2 levels would have risen much faster and the climate would be warming more rapidly.
Results of their decade-long study in the North Atlantic show that the
uptake in this ocean, which is the most intense sink for atmospheric CO2,
slowed down dramatically between the mid-nineties and the early 2000s.
3 October 2007
Three new CASIX PhD students have started their projects this month. Emmer Litt will be based at University of Wales and Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML), working on the seasonal cycle of pCO2 in Northwest European shelf waters.
Bob Brewin will be based at the University of Plymouth and working with PML and the UK Met Office on the relative contribution of different phytoplankton groups to air-sea CO2 exchange.
Diane Knappett will be based at the University of Leicester, working on the retrieval of atmospheric methane concentrations over the ocean using satellite measurements.
28 September 2007
The CASIX Annual Science Meeting will be held from 17-19 December 2007 at the UK Met Office in Exeter. This year's meeting will have a strong focus on the work of CASIX PhD students and early-career researchers. For further details, please contact the CASIX directorate office: email@example.com.
CASIX PhD student presents at the British Antarctic Survey Antarctic Funding Initiative meeting
24 September 2007
Elizabeth Jones, CASIX PhD student at the University of East Anglia, gave a talk at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) annual Antarctic Funding Initiative meeting in Cambridge on 20 September.
Elizabeth has been working with a new timeseries of pCO2 (partial pressure of CO2) data collected onboard the BAS ship RRS James Clark Ross, using the new Plymouth Marine Laboratory / Dartcom instruments developed through CASIX. She will also be participating in a research cruise in the southern ocean during January 2008.
CASIX scientist presents at the American Meteorological Society 15th Conference
28 August 2007
David Woolf, leader of CASIX science element 1, attended the American Meteorological Society 15th Conference on Air-Sea Interaction in Portland, Oregon from 20-24 August 2007. David is a principle investigator at the Environmental Research Institute (ERI) in Thurso, Scotland. Chris Jeffery, a CASIX PhD student and supervised by David, has also had a paper accepted for publication in the journal Ocean Modelling.
Full citation: C.D. Jeffery, D.K. Woolf, I.S. Robinson and C.J. Donlon, One-dimensional modelling of convective CO2 exchange in the Tropical Atlantic, Ocean Modelling (2007), doi:10.1016/j.ocemod.2007.07.003.
Former CASIX PhD student has paper accepted
16 July 2007
Michael Barkley, former CASIX PhD student at the University of Leicester, has had another paper accepted by Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, entitled "Assessing the near surface sensitivity of SCIAMACHY atmospheric CO2 retrieved using (FSI) WFM-DOAS".
The paper is based on work undertaken by Michael in CASIX project 3. Following successful completion of his PhD, Michael is now undertaking post-doctoral research at the University of Edinburgh.
Full citation: M. P. Barkley, P. S. Monks, A. J. Hewitt, T. Machida, A. Desai, N. Vinnichenko, T. Nakazawa, M. Yu Arshinov, N. Fedoseev, & T. Watai. Assessing the near surface sensitivity of SCIAMACHY atmospheric CO2 retrieved using (FSI) WFM-DOAS, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 7, 3597–3619, 2007.
CASIX scientist presents at Aquafluo meeting in the Czech Republic
4 June 2007
James Fishwick, CASIX researcher and PhD student at Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML), presented his work on the PML time series of Fast Repetition Rate Fluorometer (FRRF) measurements from station L4, part of the Western Channel Observatory at the Aquafluo: chlorophyll fluoresence in Aquatic Sciences Meeting in the Czech Republic from 28 May to 1 June 2007.
CASIX scientist presents at the Envisat Symposium in Switzerland
30 April 2007
Kathryn Barker presented her work on "A novel technique to estimate primary production directly from earth observation data: an inherent optical property approach" at the Envisat Symposium in Montreux, Switzerland, from 23-27 April.
CASIX PhD student presents at the SOLAS science conference in China
12 March 2007
Chris Jeffery, CASIX PhD student at the National Oceanography Centre Southampton and the UK Met Office, gave a poster presentation on "1D Modelling of Convective CO2 Exchange in the Tropical Atlantic" at the International SOLAS Open Science Conference in Xiamen, China during 6-9 March 2007.
CASIX to award 3 NERC studentships (call now closed)
12 February 2007
CASIX has 3 NERC studentships to award this year. Details of topics can be found on the Studentship page.
CASIX Director to speak at the "Surface Ocean CO2 Variability and Vulnerabilities" Workshop
22 January 2007
Jim Aiken, Director of CASIX, has been asked to speak at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) workshop on "Surface Ocean CO2 Variability and Vulnerabilities", to be held in Paris from 11th - 14th April 2007. The talk is entitled "Combining satellite observations and in situ CO2 data with models to quantify air-sea flux".
Co-sponsored by IOCCP, SOLAS, IMBER and
GCP, the workshop will bring together more than 60 experts on ocean
carbon measurements, physical and ecosystem modelling, atmospheric data,
data managers and policy makers. This international meeting with over 20
nations represented, will aim to present the current state of knowledge
of surface ocean carbon fluxes, how the fluxes have varied in the recent
past, and to analyse and discuss the potential effects of climatic
variability on the future fluxes.
CASIX helps organise Earth observation meeting on behalf of the IGBP UK committee
15 January 2007
The NERC Earth Observation Centres of Excellence (CASIX, CLASSIC and ESSC) have begun organising "Understanding Land-Ocean-Atmosphere Interactions in the Climate System: the role of Earth Observation from Space", on behalf of the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP) UK National Committee. This meeting will be held at the Royal Society in London on Wednesday 14th February 2007.
This meeting will explore land-atmosphere and ocean-atmosphere interactions and the role that Earth Observation is playing in improving our understanding of the complex feedbacks involved. An important aim is to foster greater links between the terrestrial and oceanographic research communities. Three themes are to be addressed: Variability in Time; Variability in Space; Climate and the Biosphere.
For more information, please click here.
pCO2 system demonstrated to Secretary of State for Trade and Industry
14 November 2006
The pCO2 system was demonstrated to the Rt. Hon. Alistair Darling MP, Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, during a visit to CASIX and Plymouth Marine Laboratory on Monday 13th November. He was accompanied by local MPs Linda Gilroy and Alison Seabeck, as well as the Director of the Government Office for the South West.
pCO2 system set to work in the southern oceans
30 October 2006
CASIX collaborator is awarded NERC Fellowship
2nd October 2006
From 1 October 2006, Helen Kettle from Edinburgh University will begin a NERC Fellowship to continue the development of a 1-d marine ecosystem ocean turbulence model, with a Lagrangian model for phytoplankton acclimation, coupled to a bio-optical model. The aim is to provide a forward model for water leaving radiance so that ocean colour (satellite) data can be related to the state of the marine ecosystem. This will contribute to quantification of the global carbon cycle and aid climate change prediction.
Previously Helen has been working on CASIX P8 (1-D modelling) and will continue to collaborate with CASIX in her new role.
6 July 2006
An expert panel convened by BBC News, including CASIX investigator Prof. Andrew Watson (UEA), has concluded that climate change is "real and dangerous". The panel's discussions were based on themes set by Professor James Lovelock in his latest book The Revenge of Gaia.
Temperatures are likely to rise by 3oC to 5oC by the end of the century, with impacts likely to be "severe" but not "catastrophic", the panel said. It also concluded that politicians are unlikely to cut emissions sufficiently to prevent dangerous global heating.
The full story and results of the panel can be found from the following links:
14 April 2006
The Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) is preparing a supplemental document that provides detail to the requirements of the Implementation Plan for the Global Observing System for Climate in Support of the UNFCCC ("GCOS Implementation Plan", GCOS-92, October 2004) for satellite-based climate products and datasets that need to be available to all Parties to the UNFCCC (UN Framework Convention on Climate Change). This document is intended to assist Parties (countries) that support and/or use Earth observation from space in working with their Space Agencies to respond to the requirements of the GCOS Implementation Plan. This document covers a wide range of topics and issues which need community advice and consultation in its preparation.
An initial draft has been prepared by a group of authors from the climate community, in collaboration with the GCOS panel chairmen, and is now available for review and comment on the GCOS homepage: http://www.wmo.int/web/gcos. Comments should be sent electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org. The period for open review and comment will last from 14 April to 12 June 2006. This report will be published by GCOS in September 2006.
31 March 2006
A Science and Management Audit (SMA) of the NERC Earth Observation (EO) Sector has awarded CASIX the top possible score. The review, carried out last September, graded NERC EO activities according to four criteria, as follows: Scientific Excellence (Grade Alpha 5), Fit to NERC priorities (Grade A), Reward (Grade: High) and Cost effectiveness (Grade V). The NERC Director of Earth Observation, Dr Arwyn Davies, congratulated CASIX on achieving "an outstanding 'straight As' result".
31 January 2006
A new CASIX studentship has been approved by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) for the academic year 2006/2007. Possible topics are available on the CASIX studentships page. Deadline for submissions is 24 March 2006.
15 December 2005
Sea trials have been successfully completed for the new CASIX pCO2 systems being manufactured by Dartcom. The first production system is scheduled for delivery in March 2006.
9 October 2005
Sea trials are getting underway this week for the new CASIX pCO2 systems being manufactured by Dartcom. The pre-production prototype has been installed on the RRS Discovery for testing on the Atlantic Meridional Transect research cruise AMT-17, between Glasgow and Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Funding for the systems is from a NERC Capital Equipment grant. The systems will be installed on UK research vessels for open ocean and shelf sea measurements. Iridium based telecommunications on the systems will allow for real time transmission of data from the ships. These measurements are important for improving estimates of air-sea gas fluxes and validating models within CASIX. For more information on the pCO2/O2 systems contact Dr Nick Hardman-Mountford (email@example.com), for more about Dartcom see www.dartcom.co.uk. Latest information from AMT-17 can be found at http://www.pml.ac.uk/amt/.
22 September 2005
The CASIX Annual Science Meeting was held in Southampton from 20-21 September this year, hosted by the National Oceanography Centre (NOC). Scientific updates on the first day brought everybody up to date with the latest CASIX research across the four science elements and these were followed by a poster session which generated many interesting discussions. Students and post-docs contributed substantially to the presentations and the first meeting of the CASIX Student Forum brought together students from a range of disciplines and institutes who are all contributing to CASIX science. The second day focussed on the future of EO data exploitation and CASIX science. The highlight of the meeting (for me), however, was Paul Monks rendition of Jerusalem in Pizza Express!
22 August 2005
NERC have awarded £995k to the MarQUEST consortium to undertake the Marine Biogeochemistry and Ecosystem Modelling Initiative of its QUEST programme (Quantifying & Understanding the Earth System). Led by Prof. Andy Watson (UEA), the project will undertake global biogeochemical ocean and shelf-seas modelling with a focus on the incorporation of phytoplankton functional types. The MarQUEST project is closely aligned to CASIX goals and shares several investigators (Andy Watson, UEA; Jim Aiken, PML; Icarus Allen, PML; Tom Anderson, NOCS; Keith Haines, ESSC). Other investigators in MarQUEST include Richard Geider (U Essex), Corinne Le Quere (UEA, BAS) and Andreas Oschilies (NOCS). The CASIX directorate will manage MarQUEST alongside its other projects.
8 July 2005
CASIX has ordered a CARIOCA buoy from Martec, France. The buoy will be used to obtain measurements of CO2 in the western English Channel. These measurements are important for improving estimates of air-sea gas fluxes and validating models within CASIX. Funding for the systems is from a NERC Capital Equipment grant last year.
1 July 2005
The new director of the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory, Prof. Andrew Wilmott, has taken up his post from today. Professor Wilmott was previously at Keele University where he was Professor of Applied Mathematics and Head of the School of Computing and Mathematics, as well as Director of the Keele Centre for Wave Dynamics. Professor Willmott said "It’s a great honour to be appointed Director of the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory. I am looking forward to working with the scientists there, to build on POL’s well-deserved international reputation for conducting wide-ranging research on shelf seas". POL is a CASIX partner organisation. For further details see www.pol.ac.uk.
Royal Society report on ocean acidification from increasing atmospheric CO2
30 June 2005
The Royal Society has today launched its report on ocean acidification due to increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide. Drawing on the knowledge and experience of the Royal Society's working group of international scientific experts, the report addresses the possible effects of increased carbon dioxide on organisms and ocean chemistry, and puts forward mitigation recommendations. PML's Dr Carol Turley, one of the members of the working group, explains that “oceans are becoming more acid because they are taking up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere due to emissions from human activities. It is happening now and will continue to do so. The impact on marine organisms and ecosystems is of great concern. This report on ocean acidification highlights a very strong argument to that of climate change for reducing our carbon dioxide emissions”. CASIX investigator Prof. Andrew Watson FRS (University of East Anglia) was a member of the Royal Society working group which conducted the study. Click here for the full copy of the report (PDF).
Note: for any enquiries, please contact PML Press Office on 01752 633 437, 07818 402 632 or on firstname.lastname@example.org.
CASIX sponsors Advances in Marine Ecosystem Modelling Research Conference
27 June 2005
CASIX are co-sponsoring the first Advances in Marine Ecosystem Modelling Research (AMEMR) Conference is being held in Plymouth, UK this week. Nearly 200 delegates have registered from Europe, USA, Australia and Africa. CASIX is well represented in oral and poster presentations at the conference, and a keynote talk is being given by CASIX investigator Icarus Allen (Plymouth Marine Laboratory). The conference has been hosted by Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML). CASIX have also been strongly represented on the local organising committee and the scientific steering committee. Further details are available from: www.amemr.info.
CASIX science given top marks at annual review
31 May 2005
CASIX science was awarded top grades of alpha-5 and higher alpha-4 at the annual steering committee meeting on May 18-19. The meeting was hosted by the University of Leicester at the National Space Centre. The steering committee said that the research was "highly novel and cutting edge and leading the field internationally". They also strongly praised the project management of CASIX. Director Jim Aiken said he was delighted with the review and thanked all the CASIX science team members for their hard work.
Dartcom to build 5 pCO2 systems for CASIX
10 May 2005
An order has been placed with Dartcom to build five pCO2/O2 systems for CASIX in partnership with PML. Funding for the systems is from a NERC Capital Equipment grant last year. The systems will be installed on UK research vessels for open ocean and shelf sea measurements. Iridium based telecommunications on the systems will allow for real time transmission of data from the ships. Dartcom are an electronic engineering company specialising in satellite communications. These measurements are important for improving estimates of air-sea gas fluxes and validating models within CASIX. For more information on the pCO2/O2 systems contact Dr Nick Hardman-Mountford (email@example.com), for more about Dartcom see www.dartcom.co.uk.
National focus and new Director as Southampton has a name change
1 May 2005
As of today, CASIX partner organisation Southampton Oceanography Centre (SOC) has changed its name to the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton (NOCS). The centre is jointly owned by the Natural Environment Research Council and the University of Southampton. The name change coincides with the new director of NOCS, Prof. Ed Hill, taking up his post. NOCS web and e-mail addresses will remain similar to those of SOC, but with "soc" replaced by "noc". For further details see www.noc.soton.ac.uk.
CASIX student paper makes AGU journal highlights
14 April 2005
A paper in AGU journal Geophysical Research Letters by CASIX student Dionysios Raitsos has been selected as one of the journal highlights of the week. The paper compares ocean colour data with SeaWIFS with phytoplankton colour index data from the Continuous Plankton Recorder (CPR) survey) to produce a 50 year record of changes in oceanic chlorophyll concentration for the Northeast Atlantic. Read more on the CASIX science update page.
CASIX publication list updated
31 March 2005
The updated lists of CASIX publications for 2004 and 2005 can be found by following the link to Publications.
CASIX scientists test model uncertainty software
23 March 2005
Three CASIX scientists attended a course on "Uncertainty in Environmental Process Models" this week. The course was hosted by the Centre for Terrestrial Carbon Dynamics (CTCD), another NERC EO Centre of Excellence, at the University of Sheffield. The course was based around use of the Gaussian Emulation Machine for Sensitivity Analysis (GEM-SA) software, designed by Dr Mark Kennedy of CTCD (see http://www.shef.ac.uk/st1mck/code.html). CASIX researchers will now evaluate whether the software is suitable for CASIX requirements.
Two new papers published by CASIX scientists
28 January 2005
Two new papers from work undertaken in CASIX have been published. Helen Kettle and Chris Merchant from University of Edinburgh have had the paper 'Systematic errors in global air-sea CO2 flux caused by temporal averaging of sea-level pressure' published in Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. This paper reports work undertaken in Project 8 of CASIX and is available for download and open for interactive public discussion via the webpage http://www.atmos-chem-phys.org/acpd.php under Online Library ACPD, Papers in Open Discussion. Samantha Lavender and co-authors have had the paper 'Modification to the atmospheric correction of SeaWiFS ocean colour images over turbid waters' published in Continental Shelf Research. This describes work contributing to Science Element 2 (Projects 4 and 5) of CASIX and is available for download via Science Direct at http://authors.elsevier.com/sd/article/S027843430400247X.
Interface Modelling Tool now available to all CASIX members
10 January 2005
A 1-d bio-geochemical ocean turbulence model for air-sea carbon flux has been developed by Helen Kettle and Chris Merchant at the University of Edinburgh and is available for use by CASIX scientists. Using this model you can simulate the ocean carbon cycle and resulting CO2 fluxes at any time and space resolution. The model is ideal for studying short time scale at the air-sea interface. For example, diurnal variations in carbon flux governed by diurnal variation of light and turbulent mixing through the water column. To read more click here.
New PDRA appointment at UWB to investigate role of slicks in air-sea fluxes
1 November 2004
The Centre for Applied Oceanography at
the University of Wales Bangor have appointed a new postdoctoral
research assistant to work on CASIX project 2: Quantifying Surface
Slicks for CO2 flux studies. Dr Rob Potter will be using SAR data to
investigate the influence of small to mesoscale
MERIS NRT rolling archive data made available to CASIX
1 October 2004
ESA have made their reduced resolution (RR) rolling archive of MERIS data available to a number of CASIX investigators in near real time. Global MERIS RR data are being downloaded to PML under Envisat AO511. Data are in level 2 form with both algal products and all radiance bands. PML is working on automating the image re-projection to provide commonality with existing MODIS, AVHRR and SeaWiFS data. Additionally, Brockmann Consult have installed the MERCI software at PML for beta testing - PML is the first European test site.
CASIX accepted as NASA partner programme
1 September 2004
A CASIX proposal to NASA has been accepted with highest rating. The Observation of Air-Sea Interactions and fluxes of Carbon (OASIS-C) proposal was accepted as part of the Carbon Cycle Science programme on 8th July. The Earth observation of Properties and Processes controlling the Ocean Carbon Cycle (EPP-OCC) proposal was also rated at the highest level by reviewers for the Oceans and Ice programme. Prof Jim Aiken has been invited to be a science team member for the new NASA Lidar mission (PhyLM).
CASIX successful in UK SOLAS outline bids
31 August 2004
CASIX PIs have been successful in a number of outline bids to UK SOLAS. The closing date for full proposals is 8th Nov 2004.
CASIX to get real time pCO2 systems
6 July 2004
CASIX has been awarded Capital Equipment funds by NERC to build 5 pCO2/O2 systems and to purchase a CARIOCA buoy. The systems will be installed on UK research vessels for open ocean and shelf sea measurements. Iridium based telecommunications on the systems will allow for real time transmission of data from the ships. These measurements are important for improving estimates of air-sea gas fluxes and validating models within CASIX.