Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 28 Issue 03

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Volume 28, No. 3
Pages 12 - 15


COMMENTARY • Mediterranean Sea Ship-based Hydrographic Investigations Program (Med-SHIP)

By Katrin Schroeder , Toste Tanhua , Harry L. Bryden, Marta Álvarez , Jacopo Chiggiato , and Simona Aracri 
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Although the Mediterranean influences the global ocean through its connection to the Atlantic and is clearly important for regional climate, fisheries, and tourism, until now it has been sampled by ship-based research cruises only at irregular intervals, mostly by national expeditions in regional areas. It has largely been neglected by global-scale international programs, such as the one-time survey conducted during the World Ocean Circulation Experiment (WOCE) and the subsequent repetition of key WOCE hydrographic lines promoted and coordinated by the Global Ocean Ship-Based Hydrographic Investigations Program (GO-SHIP). Med-SHIP is a new program that will fill this gap, collecting sustained hydrographic observations in the Mediterranean Sea. Med-SHIP has two primary objectives: (1) to observe and quantify long-term changes in marine physical and biogeochemical properties in the Mediterranean Sea, where the shorter turnover time scale suggests they can be extrapolated to the global ocean, and (2) to observe changes in thermohaline circulation and to determine how often and how much deep water is formed, and whether the currents are changing in position and intensity.


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