Along with collaborators at UW and beyond, we are using long term observations and models to explore different aspects of ocean climate variability.

Ocean tracers:  signatures of change and impact on ecosystems
Graduate student Shirley Leung is investigating the linkages between El NIno on oxygen variability in the tropical Pacific using all of available dissolved oxygen data over the last several decades.  The impact on this variability on tuna habitat is also being explored.  This work is also being done in collaboration with Allison Smith, UW post-doctoral scholar

Ocean eddies: controls on transport
Graduate student Miguel Urias-Jimenez is studying what role eddies play in the transport of warm/salty Atlantic water into the Nordic Seas.  Using idealized numerical models, he is exploring how eddy driven transport depends on season.  In addition, he is exploring how this eddy driven transport is represented in high resolution coupled climate models.

Oceans of the past
Post-doctoral scholar Daniel Amrhein is working on characterizing ocean variability over the last several thousand years by combining paleo temperature proxy data with models to create ocean state estimates.  This work is being done in collaboration with Greg Hakim, UW Atmospheric Sciences during the Last Glacial Maximum using ocean state estimates.

Marine Heat Waves
Graduate student Hillary Scannell is examining the temporal and spatial structure of marine heat waves using advanced data analysis techniques of observation and models.  See her visualization of the recent Marine Heat Wave in the Northeast Pacific (“the Blob”), and a news story about the importance of her work.

Ocean controls on air-sea interaction
We are what controls air-sea interaction in the mid-latitudes on seasonal time scales.  We use radar altimetry as a proxy for upper ocean heat content and examine the regional temporal relationship with air-sea interaction to find places and seasons where the ocean controls air-sea interaction.

Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation and heat transport variability
Using observations and high resolution coupled climate models, we are exploring the relationship between changes in AMOC and heat storage in the ocean, and how these changes are also manifested in the Gulf Stream.  This work is done in collaboration with the Oceanography Section within Climate and Global Dynamics  Modeling group at the National Center for Atmospheric Research.