Aurora australis preparing for her last season of operation with the Australian Antarctic Program.

From the EO October 2019

  • October 2019

It has been a long time between newsletter issues so there is a lot to report! The SOOS community and Project Office have been very busy in 2019!

There have been a number of key meetings and workshops, publications, new staff members joining the SOOS International Project Office (IPO), changes in the SOOS sponsorship, reviewing of the SOOS 5-year Implementation Plan as well as changes to the broader ocean observing community.


SOOS International Project Office

I am delighted to announce the growth of the SOOS IPO and welcome two new staff members to our team.


Alyce Hancock has joined the IPO as our new Communications Officer, supporting SOOS working groups and task teams through community and stakeholder communication, updating the website, the SOOS contacts database and working group mailing lists, and more timely production of the SOOS newsletter!





Elizabeth Eyre joined the SOOS IPO team in April this year, to provide administration support for planning and organisation of the annual meetings. Amazingly efficient, Elizabeth is now the SOOS Administration Officer and will continue to support the IPO with finance and management expertise.




SOOS Sponsorship

Over the last 2 years, SOOS has worked hard to secure new sponsorship for the IPO, as support from our current main sponsor, Australian Research Council's Antarctic Gateway Partnership, ends in 2019. We thank the Antarctic Gateway Partnership for this sponsorship and support over the last four years. New sponsorship has now been secured for SOOS, for full details on the new sponsorship please see here.


SOOS Scientific Steering Committee

In mid-2020, Dr Sang Hoon Lee rotated off the SOOS Scientific Steering Committee in May this year, following his retirement and 4.5 years on the SSC. We thank Sang Hoon for his inspirational leadership, wisdom and guidance throughout these years, and in particular for his support in development of the Amundsen Sea Regional Working Group!

Next year, the current Co-Chairs, Andrew Constable and Sebastiaan Swart, rotate off the committee. We will be calling for nominations of new Scientific Steering Committee members in the coming months. The full call will be made in the next issue of the SOOS newsletter, or keep an eye for updates on our nominations page.


Changes in the Ocean Observing Community

There have been two recent changes within the greater ocean observing community that will have an impact for SOOS. We bid farewell to Tim Moltmann, the Director of Australia’s Integrated Marine Observing System (IMOS). Tim has been a rock-solid support for SOOS since it first started in 2011 and we will miss his insight and knowledge – thank you for the last 8 years of support Tim! At the same time, we welcome Dr. Michelle Heupel as the new IMOS Director and look forward to working with Michelle and IMOS over the coming years!  IMOS’s bid farewell to Tim, as well as a farewell and thanks from Tim is available here.

Secondly, we thank Dr. Ed Urban, Executive Director of the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR), Dr Ed Urban. Through SCOR, Ed was integral in the development of SOOS and has played an important role in shaping SOOS into the successful program that it is. We will miss his steady guidance and advice! We are excited to work more closely with the new SCOR Executive Director, Dr Patricia Miloslavich, when she starts the position in 2020.


SOOS Meetings in 2019

SOOS has had a busy year of meetings and workshops with the Korean Polar Research Institute (KOPRI) playing host to five meetings and workshops; the SOOS Executive Committee meeting, Scientific Steering Committee meeting, Data Management Sub-Committee meeting, the Amundsen-Bellingshausen Sea Regional Working Group workshop and a SOOS Data Hack. For more information on the KOPRI Week, see here.

The Weddell Sea - Dronning Maud Land Regional Working Group also held a workshop in January 2019 hosted by the Norwegian Polar Institute, Tromsø, Norway. The full report of this workshop is available here.


SOOS 2018 Annual Report

The SOOS annual report for 2018 is now complete and highlights the progress made against each of the SOOS objectives and for each SOOS Working Group and Task Team.  The full report is available here.


OceanObs19 Publications

SOOS contributed to three community publications in the OceanObs19 special issue:


If you would like more information on any of the above, or any of the articles in our latest newsletter, 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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