National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 2022

Argo–two decades: Global oceanography, revolutionized

Johnson, G.C., S. Hosoda, S.R. Jayne, P.R. Oke, S.C. Riser, D. Roemmich, T. Suga, V. Thierry, S.E. Wijffels, and J. Xu

Annu. Rev. Mar. Sci., 14(1), 379–403, doi: 10.1146/annurev-marine-022521-102008, View online (2022)

Argo, an international, global observational array of nearly 4,000 autonomous robotic profiling floats, each measuring ocean temperature and salinity from 0 to 2,000 m on nominal 10-day cycles, has revolutionized physical oceanography. Argo started at the turn of the millennium,growing out of advances in float technology over the previous several decades. After two decades, with well over 2 million profiles made publicly available in real time, Argo data have underpinned more than 4,000 scientific publications and improved countless nowcasts, forecasts, and projections. We review a small subset of those accomplishments, such as elucidating remarkable zonal jets spanning the deep tropical Pacific; increasing understanding of ocean eddies and the roles of mixing in shaping water masses and circulation; illuminating interannual to decadal ocean variability; quantifying, in concert with satellite data, contributions of ocean warming and ice melting to sea level rise; improving coupled numerical weather predictions; and underpinning decadal climate forecasts.

Feature Publications | Outstanding Scientific Publications

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