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Physical Oceanography Highlights & Events

Upcoming Events

Physical Oceanography Seminars

Seminars are held in Clark 507 on Tuesdays at 3 p.m., unless noted otherwise. Occasional special seminars are on Thursdays at 10 a.m. Refreshments (cookies) are available 15 minutes before the seminar.

Buoy Lunch

The Buoy Lunch will be held on the second and fourth Mondays of the month at noon in Clark Annex Conference Room 271 unless noted on schedule.

WHOI Calendar

View listings for seminars happening around WHOI.

Online Expeditions Featuring PO Researchers

To Greenland's Frozen Coast

July-August 2012
A team from Iceland, Norway, Germany, the Netherlands, and the United States on a 30-day expedition along the East Greenland Coast to the High-Arctic island of Spitsbergen.

To the Denmark Strait

August 23 - September 24, 2011
Researchers hunt for the origins of a mysterious current in the North Atlantic

Dynamite: Dynamics of Abyssal Mixing and Interior Transports Experiment

May to June, 2011
Follow researchers as the study deep mixing and circulation in the North Atlantic ocean.

Fukushima Radiation in the PacificFukushima Radiation in the Pacific

June 3 - 17, 2011
Follow scientists on board the R/V Ka`imikai-o-Kanaloa examine many of the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of the ocean that either determine the fate of radioactivity in the water or that are potentially affected by radiation in the marine environment.

Vanishing Arctic

August 28, 2010
Dallas Murphy reports back from Bob Pickart’s expedition aboard the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Healy to study the effects of warming and climate change in the Arctic.

Irminger Sea

information about the water and atmosphere to learn how storms influence the sea.

Polar Discovery

Polar Discovery

2007-2009
Researchers from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are on their way to a North Pole ice camp to deploy instruments that will make year-round observations of the water beneath the Arctic ice cap to learn more about the changing global climate.

Beaufort Gyre Exploration Project

A series of nine expeditions from 2003 to 2011
The purpose is to study fresh water accumulation and release mechanism and the role of fresh
water in Arctic climate variability.

rminger Sea Cruise: Tracking Warm Eddies in a Cold Sea

Ocean InSight: Irminger Rings in the Labrador Sea

September 19 to 28, 2007
Join oceanographer Amy Bower as she travels on the R/V Knorr to the Labrador Sea to install a deep water mooring and technology to observe currents. She will be posting interactive updates on the OceanInsight website, which has special enhancements for the visually impaired.

Cruising Where Currents Collide

August 2004 and February 2005
At Cape Hatteras offshore North Carolina, scientists are learning about the turbulent meeting of two powerful Atlantic currents. See photos and read about their research.

Edge of the Arctic Shelf

2002-2004
A series of three expeditions from 2002 to 2004, the Edge of the Arctic shelf covers cruises that represent the physical oceanographic component of the Western Arctic Shelf Basin Interactions (SBI) Experiment. The overall goal is to understand how the Arctic shelves communicate with the interior basin from a coupled physical--biogeochemical standpoint.

Recent Research Highlights [more highlights]

July 25, 2014

A Mooring in Iceberg Alley

Fjords may link warming oceans and melting glaciers
Source: Oceanus Magazine
July 18, 2014

A Drop in the Ocean

Scientist pioneered tracer to reveal hidden ocean flows
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 6, 2014

A Buoy's Long Strange Trip

An oceanographic instrument drifts from the Arctic to Ireland
Source: Oceanus Magazine
January 15, 2014

What Causes the Atlantic to Bloom?

Scientists find surprising trigger for spring plant growth
Source: Oceanus Magazine
Storms
November 1, 2012

Storms, Floods, and Droughts

The cycle that transports water around the Earth is intensifying
Source: Oceanus Magazine
water cycle
October 12, 2012

Calculating Evaporation from the Ocean

Scientists strive to unravel a mix of dynamic factors
Source: Oceanus Magazine
July 20, 2012

A Robotic Albatross?

Soaring seabirds offer lessons on glider technology
Source: Oceanus Magazine
June 7, 2012

Beneath Arctic Ice, Life Blooms Spectacularly

Pools of water atop ice act as lenses to focus sunlight
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 23, 2012

A Newfound Cog in the Ocean Conveyor

Scientists confirm existence of a previously unknown current
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 9, 2012

Lessons from the 2011 Japan Quake

What have scientists learned about its cause and consequences?
Source: Oceanus Magazine
February 14, 2012

The Great South Channel

Where marine life meets to feast every spring
Source: Oceanus Magazine
January 25, 2012

Powerful Currents in Deep-Sea Gorges

What energy drives these currents in hundreds of seafloor Grand Canyons?
Source: Oceanus Magazine
November 10, 2011

Between the Beach and the Deep Blue Sea

Student explores the dynamic gateway of the shallow inner shelf
Source: Oceanus Magazine
August 11, 2011

The Ghost Mooring

WHOI engineers find equipment lost in the Antarctic a decade ago
Source: Oceanus Magazine
May 13, 2011

Another Piece in the Arctic Puzzle

Latest Ice-Tethered Profiler installed to monitor polar conditions
Source: Oceanus Magazine
April 28, 2011

Where Ocean and Ice Meet

An audio slideshow on working in Greenland's glacial fjords
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 23, 2011

Gliders Tracked Potential for Oil to Reach the East Coast

Finding the location shifting Gulf Loop Current was critical
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 17, 2011

Of Wings, Waves, and Winds

WHOI oceanographer explores the mysteries of albatross flight
Source: Oceanus Magazine
February 25, 2011

When 'The Fish Are Biting' Is Bad News

Researchers found cause of mysterious damage to mooring lines
Source: Oceanus Magazine
February 1, 2011

Where the Food Is in the Sea, and Why

Student unravels the physics at the fertile continental shelf break
Source: Oceanus Magazine
January 19, 2011

Exploring the Arctic in the Midst of Change

The polar region's distinctive feature also makes it hard to study: ice
Source: Oceanus Magazine
December 10, 2010

Building Them Tough, Bringing Them Back

WHOI's pioneering Buoy Group celebrates its 50th anniversary
Source: Oceanus Magazine
November 24, 2010

WHOI Engineer Turns Author

An audio slideshow: New book chronicles fateful expedition
Source: Oceanus Magazine
October 29, 2010

The Icebot

A video documents expedition to use robots under Arctic ice
Source: Oceanus Magazine
August 25, 2010

Boy Scouts Get a Taste of Oceanography

WHOI engineer helps Scouts earn merit badges at national Jamboree
Source: Oceanus Magazine
June 18, 2010

The Call of the Sea

An ocean engineer-turned-businessman returned to WHOI and the work he loves most
Source: Oceanus Magazine
June 18, 2010

Basic Sea Cable Gets a High-tech Upgrade

WHOI engineer's discovery will help scientists track undersea contaminants from Gulf oil spill
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 25, 2010

Mysteries at High Latitudes

A WHOI graduate student explores tip jets and deep convection
Source: Oceanus Magazine
February 4, 2010

Into the Wild Irminger Sea

WHOI ship, scientists, and crew probe strategic oceanic gateway
Source: Oceanus Magazine
October 9, 2009

Floats Reveal Unknown Ocean Pathways

The North Atlantic's circulation is more complex than previously thought
Source: Oceanus Magazine
February 20, 2009

As the World Turns and the Oceans Flow

In his lab, Jack Whitehead gets to the essence of complex phenomena
Source: Oceanus Magazine
January 9, 2009

Ocean Conveyor's 'Pump' Switches Back On

How will climate warming affect ocean circulation? The answer isn't so simple.
Source: Oceanus Magazine
December 23, 2008

What Makes the Great Ocean Currents Flow?

Audio slideshow: A graduate student explores the Gulf Stream and the Kuroshio
Source: Oceanus Magazine
October 7, 2008

The Ultimate Fluid Environment for Scientists

An audio slideshow celebrates the 50th year of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Program at WHOI
Source: Oceanus Magazine
September 25, 2008

'Green' Energy Powers Undersea Glider

Thermal glider uses heat from the ocean to fly through the deep blue
Source: Oceanus Magazine
September 17, 2008

The Spiral Secret to Mammal Hearing

... and other recent research findings by WHOI scientists
Source: Oceanus Magazine
September 11, 2008

Corralling the Wild and Wooly Southern Ocean

Graduate student creates supercomputer model to tame a vast, remote ocean
Source: Oceanus Magazine
November 30, 2007

OceanInsights for the Blind

WHOI scientist creates a bond with visually impaired students
Source: Oceanus Magazine
October 25, 2007

A New Way to Monitor Changes in the Arctic

Ice-Tethered Profilers go with the floe, relaying daily data from the ice-covered ocean
Source: Oceanus Magazine
September 24, 2007

A Warm Eddy Swirling in the Cold Labrador Sea

A conversation with WHOI physical oceanographer Amy Bower
Source: Oceanus Magazine
June 27, 2007

The Ocean—Captured in a Box

An "experimentalist" encapsulates ocean fluid dynamics in the lab
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 30, 2007

Measuring Raindrops in the Ocean

A quest to engineer sensitive but tough meteorological instruments for buoys at sea
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 27, 2007

Letter from Kangiqsujuaq

A mooring in the remote Hudson Strait offers a finger on the pulse of unfolding Arctic change
Source: Oceanus Magazine
March 15, 2007

Current Events off Antarctica

Graduate student helps discover a previously unknown ocean current
Source: Oceanus Magazine
February 8, 2007

Why the West Wind Wobbles

Are changes in wintertime climate random or predictable?
Source: Oceanus Magazine
January 31, 2007

Reaching Up Into Perilous, Icy Waters

The 'Arctic Winch' sends sensors toward the underside of sea ice—and back again
Source: Oceanus Magazine
January 26, 2007

A Mooring Built to Survive the Irminger Sea

It takes a tough buoy to stand tall when tip jets howl off the Greenland ice cap
Source: Oceanus Magazine

Recent People Highlights [more highlights]

September 24, 2007

A Warm Eddy Swirling in the Cold Labrador Sea

A conversation with WHOI physical oceanographer Amy Bower
Source: Oceanus Magazine