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10 years of world-leading science at the ocean-atmosphere interface led by UEA


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Diagram to illustrate the domain of SOLAS, its interdisciplinary nature and key process.

10 years of world-leading science at the ocean-atmosphere interface led by UEA

The Surface-Ocean Lower-Atmosphere Study (SOLAS), studies the interactions between the atmosphere and ocean; from the exchange of heat and gases to the role of dust deposition on stimulating phytoplankton growth and carbon uptake. A new open access paper, published in Anthropocene, summarises some of the key findings and how they are important to policy makers and our understanding of the Earth system and climate.

SOLAS has led to a step change in our understanding of subjects such as the physics and chemistry of interfacial exchange (relevant to many applications beyond the ocean-atmosphere interface), the role of anthropogenic emissions of nitrogen compounds in fertilising the ocean and resulting effects on oxygen minimum zones (resulting in serious damage to fisheries in some regions), and the effect of eutrophication and algal aquaculture on the emissions of gases which are damaging to our atmosphere or human health. All of these things and much more of the work done under SOLAS go far beyond ‘blue skies’ research to inform policy and management decisions but also in some cases with potential interest to industry.

As SOLAS moves into its second decade, with a new science plan and implementation strategy it also becomes part of the International Future Earth project, the European Hub of which is hosted at UEA under the leadership of Professor Corinne Le Quéré, who has also been instrumental in the success of SOLAS one the past decade. Future Earth and its projects such as SOLAS will shape international research into the future of global climate and sustainability. To be involved at the highest level in the scientific directorship of global environmental research presents a hugely valuable opportunity for UEA and its partners and stakeholders.

For more information, or for contact points in to SOLAS or Future Earth, drop us a line at mken@uea.ac.uk

Diagram to illustrate the domain of SOLAS, its interdisciplinary nature and key process.
Figure from SOLAS, 2004

SOLAS is an international project supported by numerous funders including the Natural Environment Research Council in the UK. It has been running since 2004, and from 2004 –  2009 was coordinated and run from UEA. Scientists from the School of Environmental Sciences have contributed extensively to this  international programme, from the design and leadership of the programme to many small and large research projects contributing to the body of knowledge the programme created. As well as the paper by Breviere et al, and and hundreds of scientific publications, SOLAS scientists have published the state of the art in the field in an open access textbook: Ocean-Atmosphere Interaction of Gases and Particles, edited by Professor Peter Liss and Dr Martin Johnson from UEA. 

Posted by Martin Johnson on Mon, 30 Oct 2017



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