No. 07 - 2010-06-16: 25th IUGG General Assembly, Albert I Medal Nominations, SCOR/IAPSO WG 127

No. 07 - 2010-06-16: 25th IUGG General Assembly, Albert I Medal Nominations, SCOR/IAPSO WG 127
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OPEN LETTER No. 7 ‚ÄĘ June 16, 2010
Written by LAWRENCE A. MYSAK, IAPSO President


25th IUGG General Assembly, Albert I Medal nominations, SCOR/IAPSO WG 127


Dear IAPSO Colleagues:

In just over a year, I look forward to meeting many of you again in Melbourne at the 25th IUGG General Assembly (GA), June 27-July 8, 2011.  Our Secretary General (SG) Johan Rodhe has been working closely with the other association SGs, IUGG SG Alik Ismail-Zadeh and the IUGG Scientific Program Committee chaired by Peter Manins from CSIRO, to prepare what I believe will be an exciting program.  At this GA, the focus will be on 12 Union Symposia, one of which will be organized by IAPSO (on sea level change).  IAPSO is also taking the lead in organizing three joint (inter-association) symposia: one on the Southern Ocean, one on the Arctic, and one on a continuation of the union sea level change symposium.  In addition there will be seven IAPSO-only symposia covering topics in physical and chemical oceanography as well as biogeochemistry of the oceans.  As in the past, IAPSO is a participant in many other inter-association symposia.  For those of you with limited time for travel, you will be pleased to learn that the IAPSO-led symposia will take place during the period June 28-July 2. The program details can be found at the following website: To apply for travel support (intended for developing world scientists), please see the IAPSO website

To ensure the success of the GA, I encourage you and your colleagues to submit abstracts to the various symposia.  Please check the GA website regularly to see when abstracts can be first submitted.

I would like to warmly thank our SG Johan for helping to organize the scientific program in Melbourne.  Also, I am extremely grateful the IAPSO Executive Committee (EC) members and other colleagues who have agreed to serve as conveners for the IAPSO and IAPSO-related symposia.
Recently you received an invitation from Johan Rodhe to submit nominations for the next (the sixth) Prince Albert I Medal, which will be awarded in Melbourne. In the past all the Medal recipients have been male physical oceanographers.  I would like to encourage you and your colleagues to nominate more chemical oceanographers as well as female scientists.  Nominations should be sent electronically to Johan by the end of September.  Details on the nomination procedure are given on the IAPSO website.

At this time, it is a great pleasure to thank SCOR/IAPSO WG 127 (The Thermodynamics and Equation of State of Seawater) for the completion of their extensive work over the past four years which involved the introduction of the Gibbs potential function for seawater and a new salinity formulation called Reference Salinity (SR), expressed in g/kg. The Gibbs function makes it possible to obtain accurate representations of many thermodynamic properties of seawater (e.g., density, enthalpy, entropy, heat capacity, and sound speed). The Reference Salinity more accurately represents the chemical composition of seawater over a wide range on concentrations, and it replaces the familiar Practical Salinity (SP), which has been used by the oceanographic community for the past 30 years.  However, we note that Practical Salinity will continue to be recorded in national and international data bases to maintain continuity with past practice.  It is further noted that in cases where the influences of seawater composition anomalies are negligible, the two salinities are related by the following equation:  SR = (35.16504/35) SP.  The new formulation for the thermodynamics of sea water will be published in a joint IOC-SCOR-IAPSO Manual, a draft of which is available from  This WG has been under the excellent chairmanship of Trevor McDougall from Australia, and it is comprised of full members from Germany (Rainer Feister and Petra Spitzer), Taiwan (Chen-Tung Chen), Australia (David Jackett), the USA (Giles Marion and Frank Millero) and Canada (Dan Wright).  Associate members include two others from Canada (Rick Pawlowicz and Peter Tremaine) and one from Germany (Steffen Seitz).  Many congratulations to Trevor and his team!

In closing, I should like to remind you that the present IAPSO EC will end their terms of service at the GA in Melbourne, when a new EC will be elected.  If any of you would like to be considered for membership in the next IAPSO EC, please contact Shiro Imawaki (, the Past President of IAPSO.

With best wishes for a happy summer.

Lawrence A. Mysak
President, IAPSO
and Canada Steamship Lines Emeritus Professor
Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences
McGill University
805 Sherbrooke St. W.
Montreal, QC  H3A 2K6
Tel:  514-398-3768    FAX:  514-398-6115

Participate in IAPSO and related activities at the 25th IUGG General Assembly in Melbourne, Australia,
June 27-July 8, 2011:


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