COP22 10/12/2015

ARGO, The planetary thermometer

CLS processes, calibrates and distributes the data of more than 6000 oceanographic beacons to the international scientific community.
The ocean can store 1000 times more heat than the atmosphere. The network of underwater ARGO floats measures the temperature and salinity of the oceans from the surface down to a depth of 2000 meters. This unique network of 3880 autonomous beacons is used to measure thermal expansion due to global warming of the Ocean. An indispensable complement to satellite observation data, it unfortunately does not sufficiently take into account marginal seas or ice areas today.
CLS processes the data of 75% of the ARGO fleet and transmits them to climatologists around the world. Some floats already measure the chemical composition of our oceans (dissolved oxygen, CO2, pH, chlorophyll, nitrogen) to better characterise the acidification of our waters. In addition, instruments capable of descending into the deepest parts of the ocean and of bringing back accurate measurements of temperature and salinity at depths of up to 6000 meters, are currently being developed. The aim is to improve our understanding of ocean currents, which in turn will increase knowledge of the Earth’s climate.