From the Executive Officer 

An update on SOOS activities up to August 2016

  • This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , SOOS Executive Officer
  • August 2016

As always, it’s been a busy and productive few months for SOOS! The updates below cover recent SOOS meetings, the SCAR/SCOR Review of SOOS Progress, and an update on the SOOS Project Office sponsorship.

 From the EO 2016

Figure 1: The Aurora Australis outside the IMAS building in Hobart 


Recent SOOS Meetings

Four key SOOS meetings took place in May this year. The SOOS Executive Committee and Scientific Steering Committee meetings were hosted by Scripps institution of Oceanography, USA, on the 10th and 12-14th May respectively. A core focus of these meetings was discussion of the SCAR/SCOR international review of SOOS (see below), and planning for implementation activities in 2016/2017. The SSC meeting minutes will be available on the SOOS website here in October 2016.

Also hosted by Scripps, a joint workshop between SOOS and the US Southern Ocean Carbon and Climate Observations and Modelling (SOCCOM) project brought the two communities together to discuss common issues and challenges around technology, float deployment, data discovery and delivery and communication. Key breakout discussions focussed on specific efforts to enhance under ice observations south of 60 South, the potential for combined efforts in data delivery, and modelling requirements of observational data.

Alongside these meetings, the SOOS Data Management Sub-Committee held their annual meeting, as highlighted in the newsletter article here.

SOOS thanks Scripps, SOCCOM, SCAR, SCOR and our other supporters for their support of these meetings!


Network of Southern Ocean Moorings

The SOOS Data Officer and Data Management Sub-Committee has been very busy since their annual meeting in May 2015. Working with the broader community they have brought together information on Southern Ocean mooring locations and data into an interactive map. Led by Florence Fetterer (NSIDC, USA), they were also successful in a funding bid to the NOAA Big Earth Data Initiative to fund efforts to make Southern Ocean mooring data more easily available. For more information, read the project newsletter article (here)!


EO Image August 2016

Figure 2: New, interactive map of currently deployed, and historical mooring sites with information on location and data!


SCAR/SCOR Review of SOOS Progress

SOOS is a joint initiative of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) and the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR). Both sponsors recently coordinated an international external review of the SOOS 5-Year Implementation Plan and progress thus far. SOOS was very happy with the positive comments and feedback provided by the review. Recommendations focussed on clearer communication of the timeline and resources required to achieve SOOS milestones, and a better reflection of the strategic partnerships between SOOS, stakeholders, and other key communities. We are in the process of modifying aspects of the 5-Year Implementation Plan in response to the review, and this modified plan will be presented to both SCAR and SCOR at their upcoming annual executive meetings. The plan will be published and made available on the SOOS website shortly thereafter (likely October 2016). We thank SCAR, SCOR and the reviewers for their thoughtful and timely comments!

Can’t wait for the finalized plan? See the interim 5-Year Implementation Plan here!


Project Office Core Sponsorship

The SOOS International Project Office has been hosted by the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies at the University of Tasmania (IMAS-UTAS), since August 2011. This hosting is set to end in August 2016, and we thank IMAS-UTAS for their support over the last 5 years! The IPO will continue to be located at IMAS-UTAS, with sponsorship from the Australian Research Council’s Special Research Initiative for Antarctic Gateway Partnership (Project ID SR140300001) until mid-2018. The Antarctic Gateway Partnership has also provided funding for the SOOS Data Officer, and for operating expenses and travel since early 2015. SOOS is excited to be supported by this initiative, which is a partnership between the Australian Antarctic Division, the University of Tasmania, and CSIRO.

Click here for more information on SOOS sponsors and endorsers.



Schofield O., et al., 2016: Moving towards implementation of a Southern Ocean Observing System, Marine Technology Society. Volume 50, Number 3, May/June 2016, pp. 63-68(6)

If you would like more information on any of the above, please contact me at the International Project Office ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ). 

Louise Newman


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