Observing the global ocean with Biogeochemical-Argo

Biogeochemical-Argo (BGC-Argo) is a network of profiling floats carrying sensors that enable observation of as many as six essential biogeochemical and bio-optical variables: oxygen, nitrate, pH, chlorophyll a, suspended particles, and downwelling irradiance. This sensor network represents today’s most promising strategy for collecting temporally and vertically resolved observations of biogeochemical properties throughout the ocean. All data are freely available within 24 hours of transmission. These data fill large gaps in ocean-observing systems and support three ambitions: gaining a better understanding of biogeochemical processes (e.g., the biological carbon pump and air–sea CO2 exchanges) and evaluating ongoing changes resulting from increasing anthropogenic pressure (e.g., acidification and deoxygenation); managing the ocean (e.g., improving the global carbon budget and developing sustainable fisheries); and carrying out exploration for potential discoveries. The BGC-Argo network has already delivered extensive high-quality global data sets that have resulted in unique scientific outcomes from regional to global scales. With the proposed expansion of BGC-Argo in the near future, this network has the potential to become a pivotal observation system that links satellite and ship-based observations in a transformative manner.

Claustre H., Johnson K. S. & Takeshita Y., 2019. Observing the global ocean with Biogeochemical-Argo. Annual Review of Marine Science 12: 11.1 – 11.26. Article (subscription required).

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