Salinity Working Group Meetings

US CLIVAR Salinity Workshop
8-10 May 2006
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The salinity field of the global oceans is attracting increasing attention, due to its influence on ocean-atmosphere exchanges, its role as an indicator of the water cycle and its potential for improved climate forecasting. New sources of salinity data are now available (The Argo Project profiling float array: and others are on the horizon (The Aquarius satellite mission to be launched in March 2009 will measure sea surface salinity: ).

All investigators (PIs, post-docs and students) working toward the understanding of the regional and global processes linked to the variability and trends of salinity in the coupled climate system were invited. Also those able to address the technical challenges of long-term salinity measurements were invited to attend. The goal of the workshop was to produce a “white paper” articulating the significance of salinity measurements to the advancement of understanding, and ultimately predicting, climate; outlining the necessary measurements; and describing additional activities to enable the full utilization of these measurements. To this end the meeting forma entailed invited presentations, and an emphasis on group discussions, with poster space available to all attendees.

The Workshop was held in the Redfield Auditorium of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, May 8-10, 2006. It was followed immediately by the Aquarius/SAC-D Third Science Workshop (May 10-12), given the strong connection between the workshop goals and the satellite mission's surface salinity measurement capabilities.


8 May (Day 1)
0730 Continental Breakfast  
0830 - 0845 Welcome and Introductions, goals and logistics Carton/Schmitt
  Session 1: Surface Water Fluxes  
0845 - 0915 New estimates of global evaporation Yu
0915 - 0945 Estimates of global precipitation Arkin
1015 - 1030 Morning Break
1030 - 1100 Evaporation minus Precipitation Schmitt
1100 - 1200 Discussion: Future of surface flux estimates: can oceanic data provide constraints? Schmitt
1200 -1300 Break for Lunch


Session 2: Salinity structure: trends and variability  
1300 - 1330 Salinity and Climate Dynamics Johnson
1330 - 1400 Atlantic Ocean Salinity Trends Dickson
1400 - 1430 Salinity trends from archival data Curry
1430 - 1500 Arctic Ocean Salinity Trends Proshutinsky
1500 - 1530 Afternoon Break
1530 - 1630 Discussion:  
1730 - 1830
Poster Session and light snacks/beverages
9 May (Day 2)
0730 Continental Breakfast  
  Session 3: Trends and Variability of Salinity  
0830 - 0900 Southern Ocean Salinity Trends Gordon
0900 - 0930 Pacific Salinity Variability Lukas
0930 - 1000 Tropical Salinity Variability Delcroix
1000 - 1015 Morning Break
1015 - 1115 Discussion: What do changing salinities tell us about the water cycle? Large
  Session 3: Salinity and Climate  
1115 - 1145 Salinity and El Nino predictability
1145 - 1215 Paleo-salinity issues
M. Schmidt
1215 - 1315
  Session 4: Observations and monitoring opportunites  
1315 - 1345 Salinity Trends revealed by ARGO
1345 - 1415 Thermosalinographs on VOS
1415 - 1445 Inferring fluxes from surface convergences: salinity on surface drifters Niiler
1445 - 1500
Afternoon Break
1500 - 1530
In-situ sensors: New developments
1530 - 1700 Discussion: Are there specific experiments that need to be done? What are the observational requirements for monitoring salinity variability in the coastal zone, the tropics, subtropics, and at high latitudes?
10 May (Day 3)
0730 Continental Breakfast  
  Session 5: Future Prospects  
0830 - 0900 Remote Sensing and Aquarius Mission Overview Lagerloef
0900 - 0930 Improved salinity measurements to constrain oceanic fluxes: Prospects for data assimilation
0930 - 1030 Discussion: What are the elements of an improved salinity monitoring system for climate? water cycle? Aquarius
1030 - 1045 Morning Break
1045 - 1200 Discussion: SWG White paper and future plans  


Salinity Posters Presentations:

  • Disbrutions of mixed layer properties in North Pacific water mass formation areas: comparison of ARGO floats and World Ocean Atlas 2001 - Frederick M. Bingham
  • Using Sea Surface Salinity as a parameterin the Gravest Empirical Mode - Deirdre A. Byrne
  • The Freshening of Surface Waters in High Latitudes: Effects on the Thermohaline and Wind-driven Circulations - Alexey Fedorov
  • The SMOS approach to retrieve sea surface salinity from L-BAND radiometric measurements - Jordi Font
  • Low Frequency Variation of Sea Surface Salinity in the Tropical Atlantic - Semon Grodsky
  • Role of assimilation of salinity data in tropical Pacific Ocean simulations - Eric Hackert
  • Upper ocean T-S variations in the Greenland Sea and their association to climatic conditions - Sirpa Hakkinen
  • How was Seasonal Variability of Upper Ocean Salinity Simulated by Global Ocean Data Assimilation Systems? - Boyin Huang
  • Using Data Mining Technique to Discover Useful Salinity/Temperature Patterns in ARGO data - Yo-Ping Huang
  • Variability Scales of Sea Surface Salinity - S. Daniel Jacob
  • Internnual Variations of mixed layer Salinity inthe Equatorial Pacific Ocean - Seung-Bum Kim and Frank J. Wentz
  • Poleward propagation of compensated salinity anomalies in the North Atlantic Ocean and impacts at high latitudes - Audine Laurian
  • Upper Ocean State and Variability in the Subpolar North Atlantic from Lagrangian Floats - Xingwen Li
  • Internal Variability of sea surface salinity in the tropics - Raghu Murtugudde
  • Modelled and observed Atlantic salinity changes over the last half-century - Anne Pardaens
  • Decadal Changes of Pacific Salinity - Li Ren
  • Ocean surface salinity in the tropical oceans using satellite derived OLR - Bulusu Subrahmanyam
  • Impact of ARGO salinity observations on ocean analysis - Chaojiao Sun
  • The role of salinity in the climate response to an intensified water cycle - Paul Williams
  • Understanding and Attributing Subpolar North Atlantic Freshening - Peili Wu, Michael Vellinga and Richard Wood
  • Observational evidence of winter spice formation - Stephen Yeager
  • How does the subsurface salinity maximum in the South China Sea reach its equilibrium - Zuojun Yu
  • An Empiricial Parameterization for the Salinity of Subsurface Water - Rong-Hua Zhang