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Climate Variability & Change, Water & Energy Cycles

The last several years have seen an explosion of interest (mostly in Europe) in potential use of satellite magnetometry for study of large-scale ocean circulation. Our 2005 global numerical model of the ocean-induced magnetic field (Glazman, Golubev; 2005) has demonstrated that the ocean signal at sea surface (attaining 120 nT) is almost two orders of magnitude greater than previously predicted. At satellite altitude the magnitudes of the magnetic field reach 6 nT which is also much larger than in previous studies. Given the 0.1 nT sensitivity of present (scalar) magnetometers, detection of ocean currents by such a remote sensing technique presents a highly attractive possibility, especially in the absence of alternative concepts. A statistical approach developed in (Golubev, Zlotnicki; 2008) allowed to extract the ocean-induced magnetic signal from historical aeromagnetic survey data (Project Magnet; 1951-1994) and reconstruct the picture of the ocean circulation in mid latitudes. These studies provide a solid foundation for a new research phase in the field. Now we are proposing the project that will move us toward satellite applications. The main objectives of the proposed study are: 1) To develop a filtering technique for extracting the ocean magnetic field signal from existing satellite observations. 2) Using multi-year observations from the CHAMP mission, to apply these new techniques to obtain the ocean currents water transport and to study ocean circulation variability (focusing on the area of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current). 3) To validate the results by comparing them with data from independent sources (magnitude estimates based on in situ measurements and ocean circulation models data). Our long-term goal is to develop a novel powerful remote sensing technique for detection of ocean currents from satellite orbit.

Project PI: Yury Golubev/Advanced Marine Systems

Email: Yury.N.Golubev@jpl.nasa.gov

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Started: Aug 10, 2010

Last Activity: Mar 17, 2011

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