IAPSO Newsletter No. 1.2 - September 2016

IAPSO Newsletter No. 1.2 - September 2016
iapso logo 03 650x100

The IAPSO six-monthly Newsletter

Vol. 1 n. 2 (September 2016)

This informal newsletter, released approximately every six months aims to keep IAPSO Members informed about the activities of the Association. IAPSO welcomes contribution from Delegates about recent research findings in their respective countries or details of research programmes that are upcoming or have been completed.

Past issues are stored in the IAPSO website (IAPSO Letters Archive). Please forward this message to those who will benefit from the information. Your comments and contributions are welcome (please write to iapso.sg@gmail.com).


In this issue

1. News from IAPSO

   1.1 IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA Joint Assembly, Cape Town, 2017  

   1.2 IAPSO Awards 2017

   1.3 Future of seas and oceans: G7 initiative

2. News from IUGG

   2.1 IUGG Support of Scientific Meetings in 2017

¬†¬† 2.2 Sad news ‚Äď Prof. David Collins passed away

3. News from SCOR

4. In memory of Dr. Robert E. Stevenson

5. Contacting IAPSO


1. News from IAPSO

1.1 IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA Joint Assembly, Cape Town, 2017

The Local Organising Committee (LOC) is thrilled to welcome you to the 2017 Joint IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA Assembly in Cape Town, South Africa, 27 August¬†- 1 September 2017. The LOC is strongly convinced that Cape Town is an excellent location for the 2017 meeting. The dynamic LOC comprises of a mix of young early career scientists as well as established researchers in all three earth disciplines (Oceanography, Meteorology and Geomagnetism). In addition, many of the LOC members are currently committee members of the IUGG ‚Äď South Africa National Committee.

Cape Town acts as an environmental gateway to the southern oceans and thus provides an ideal scientific destination for an international conference on various earth system studies (IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA). The oceanic region south of Africa is a critical crossroad for the inter-ocean communication between the subtropical South Indian Ocean, South Atlantic gyres, and the cooler Southern Ocean waters. Modelling and observational studies have provided a large body of evidence that increased transport of warm water between the Indian and Atlantic oceans south of Africa plays a role in strengthening local storms and increasing rainfall over large parts of South Africa. Many of South Africa's flooding disasters have resulted from cut-off lows that can intensify further when the southern Agulhas Current is anomalously strong and warm. The wide range of ocean environments influencing both the biota and climate conditions of the region provides an ideal scientific backdrop for the location of Cape Town as the host for the 2017 Joint Assembly.

In addition, the development of the internationally recognized Square Kilometer Array (SKA) in the Karoo as well as the currently operational SALT and the Meerkat facilities create further interest to scientists working in the field of Geomagnetism and Aeronomy. South Africa is host to many National Research Facilities including the Hermanus Magnetic Observatory, South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity, South African Environmental Observation Networks and many others that will be of interest to the delegates.

Visit the Joint Assembly 2017 website to read more about the arrangements, draft programme, registration and call for abstracts (http://www.iapso-iamas-iaga2017.com/).

Received from the Local Organising Committee

2017 Joint IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA Assembly

1.2 IAPSO Awards 2017

Prince Albert I Medal 2017, Call for nominations

Albert I medal pictureThe Prince Albert I Medal is an award offered by the Foundation Rainier III of Monaco to a scientist who has made outstanding contributions to the enhancement and advancement of the physical and/or chemical sciences of the oceans. It is awarded every two years at the IAPSO General Assembly, to a most prominent scientist chosen by a specially appointed IAPSO Award Committee.


The Prince Albert¬†I Medal 2017 will be awarded at the IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA Joint Assembly in Cape Town, South Africa, 27 August ‚Äď 1 September, 2017.


The call for nominations was launched on 25 August, 2016. Nominations must be received by the Secretary General by 24 November, 2016.


Eugene LaFond Medal 2017, Call for candidatures


Eugene LaFondMedal picture

The Eugene LaFond Medal 2017 will be awarded to an ocean scientist from a developing country making a presentation (poster or oral) in a IAPSO-sponsored or co-sponsored symposium at the IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA Joint Assembly "Good Hope for Earth Sciences", Cape Town, South Africa.

When registering for the Assembly, candidates can propose themselves by selecting "IAPSO" as their area of expertise in the Joint Assembly registration form and then clicking on the button "Eugene LaFond Medal", and subsequently choosing "yes" in the next form.

Thereafter, candidates must send an e-mail, including a brief CV describing their education and research activities to the IAPSO Secretary General.

For further information about the medals, nomination procedures and previous medal winners, see http://iapso.iugg.org/medals-and-awards.

Stefania Sparnocchia (IT), Secretary General 

1.3 Future of seas and oceans: G7 initiative

In November 2015, the Secretary General of IUGG, Alik Ismail-Zadeh, requested the President of IAPSO, Denise Smythe-Wright to instigate an initiative in response to the marine science issues raised by the G7 Science Ministers in the communiqué arising from their meeting in October 2015. The G7 countries have outstanding oceanographic capabilities and are well placed not only to continue to provide world leadership in marine environmental research, but also to use the research outcomes for their wider socio-economic benefit.

Realizing that this was not just an IAPSO initiative, Dr Smythe-Wright approached Professor Peter Burkill, President of SCOR and together they mustered fourteen international experts to address the following issues:

  • Marine Litter
  • Ocean Acidification
  • Biodiversity Loss
  • Deoxygenation
  • Ocean Warming
  • Ecosytem degredation
  • Deep-sea mining

The resulting report - Future of the Ocean and its Seas: a non-governmental scientific perspective on seven marine research issues of G7 interest, was completed in April 2016 and submitted to the Science Ministers prior to their meeting in Japan, May 2016. A copy of the report can be found at http://www.icsu.org/news-centre/news/pdf/Report%20to%20G7%20SMins%20on%20FOSs.pdf .

At their meeting in Tsukuba the Science Ministers proposed a way forward and the lead for this has been taken by the UK Department of Business Innovation and Skills (UK BIS) working with the UK National Oceanography Centre. The focus of future work will be on observations and while IAPSO-SCOR are not formally part of this initiative the President of IAPSO has being working with UK BIS to ensure that IAPSO-SCOR input continues. For further details see the G7 Tsukuba communiqué which can be found at http://www8.cao.go.jp/cstp/english/others/communique_en.html .

Denise Smythe-Wright (UK), IAPSO President  

2. News from IUGG                         

2.1 IUGG Support of Scientific Meetings in 2017

The program of IUGG support for scientific meetings (e.g. workshops, advanced schools, symposia) is one of the most important means by which the Union and its Associations pursue a goal of promoting geophysics and geodesy through international collaboration.

The guidelines can be found on the web page: http://www.iugg.org/meetings/guidelines.php.

Organizers of prospective meetings to be held in 2017 should contact the respective Association Secretary-General by sending a request for IUGG support before the deadline of 15 October, 2016. The scientific merit of each proposal will be evaluated by the respective Association Secretary General, taking into consideration comments and advice received from the Association Executive Committee. The Association Secretaries-General will then communicate their recommendation for selection to the IUGG Secretary-General as soon as possible after receiving the requests, but not later than 31 October, 2016.

The IUGG Bureau will decide on the final selection and the decision will be communicated, as soon as possible, but not later than 1 December, 2016, to the Association Secretaries-General by the IUGG Secretary-General in the form of an award letter.  Immediately after the Association Secretaries-General will communicate the result to the organizers of the meeting.

Organizers of meetings pertinent to IAPSO are invited to send their proposals  to iapso.sg@gmail.com within October 15, 2016.

Source: IUGG website (www.iugg.org) 

2.2 Sad news ‚Äď Prof. David Collins passed away

David Collins, Chair of the UK National Committee for Geodesy and Geophysics and Chair of the IUGG Finance Committee, passed away on 8 September 2016 during his vacation in Croatia.

Over the last decade, David Collins significantly contributed to the activities of the Union in two capacities: as Chair of the United Kingdom’s National Committee for Geodesy and Geophysics, and as a Member and Chair (since 2011) of the IUGG Finance Committee. He was an outstanding scientist, teacher, colleague and friend. He was always sharp in analyzing a situation and suggesting a solution to problems.

In June, David was at the IUGG Executive Committee meeting in Paris, his usual larger-than-life self, regaling us with stories of his adventures to reach the meeting, as there was heavy flooding in Manchester, and also as usual offering insightful comments in the meeting … IUGG will miss him.

Received from IUGG

4. News from SCOR: Annual meeting (Sopot, Poland, 5-7 September, 2017)

The IAPSO President is an ex-officio member of the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR) and so Denise Smythe-Wright attended the 42nd SCOR Executive meeting in Sopot, Poland, 5-7 September, 2017.

One of the main remits of SCOR is to fund working groups and a call for proposals is made annually. This year SCOR received 11 proposals for consideration and following presentations outlining the merits and shortcomings of each one, the committee decided to fund two proposals. The first, entitled Iron Model Intercomparison Project (FeMIP), aims to deliver new insight into the functioning of the ocean iron cycle, using observations and, in particular, to improve its representation in ocean models. The second, entitled Measuring Essential Climate Variables in Sea Ice (ECVice), is concerned with providing standardized protocols for processing sea-ice samples and collecting data for key variables, including partial pressure of CO2, nutrients, algal biomass and production, and gas exchange.

In the past IAPSO has co-funded a number of very successful SCOR working groups including WG 127, which resulted in the development of new thermodynamic equations of state for seawater TEOS-10. IAPSO is not directly involved in the current working groups, but is considering how it will in the future.

In addition to business items relating to current SCOR working groups and groups affiliated to SCOR, the meeting included an afternoon of presentations from scientists from a number of Polish marine organisations, thus giving the attendees the opportunity to hear more about marine science in Poland.

Our Polish hosts made us all very welcome over the 3 days of the meeting and provided a very interesting evening tour of Gdansk Old Town and the European Solidarity Museum followed by a delicious conference dinner in the unusual surroundings of the museum on the Tuesday evening.

Denise Smythe-Wright (UK), IAPSO President,

IAPSO representative with SCOR


5. In memory of Dr. Robert E. Stevenson (Jan. 15, 1921 - Aug. 12, 2001)

Bob StevensonRobert E. (Bob) Stevenson was the Secretary General of IAPSO for eight years, from 1987 to 1995. We remember him as a leading figure, very active in running the Association, and able to gather together scientists worldwide in very successful meetings, such as the exemplary General Assembly organized in 1995 in Honolulu, Hawaii, in the USA.

He authored many scientiÔ¨Āc papers on topics relevant to physical oceanography and marine meteorology.

But, it was in August, 1966 that Bob, thanks to his seeing a photo of the Florida Keys taken by the Gemini IV astronauts - a photo showing deep internal waves between Cuba and Florida as well as two large eddies - that he had a profound new insight, one which led to the creation and development of an entirely new branch of science: Space Oceanography. This was Bob‚Äôs greatest accomplishment, acknowledged by the scientific community which considers him ‚Äúthe Father of Space Oceanography‚ÄĚ.

From 1970-1986, during most of Bob's space oceanography career, he worked for the Office of Naval Research at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, California, first as Scientific Liaison Officer and then as Deputy Director of Space Oceanography. In 1985 President Ronald Reagan awarded Bob the Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award in part for "his work on oceanography from Space Shuttle‚ÄĚ.

For over 30 years, Bob briefed each US astronaut crew on space oceanography matters. The photographs returned mission after mission were fundamental in revealing unknown ocean surface patterns, for example, the ‚Äúspiral eddies‚ÄĚ, and starting the debate on their importance and representativeness in weather and climate predictive models.

The valuable works on space oceanography of Robert E. Stevenson have recently been collected and made freely available by his son, Robert K. Stevenson, on a new website: http://spaceoceanography.com/.

I wish to thank Bob Jr. for this, and would like to invite the IAPSO community to visit and further advertise the above link. Any comments and suggestions concerning the website and its content can be sent to Bob Jr. using the contact email address: spaceoceanography@gmail.com.

Stefania Sparnocchia (IT), IAPSO Secretary General


6. Contacting IAPSO

The Secretary-General is the main point of contact for all matters concerning IAPSO:

Dr. Stefania Sparnocchia

CNR - Istituto di Scienze Marine

Viale Romolo Gessi 2, 34123 Trieste, Italy

E-mail: iapso.sg@gmail.com


End of IAPSO Newsletter Volume 1 Number 2 (26 September 2016)

Edited by S. Sparnocchia (Secretary General)



| Unsubscribe | {modify}Change your subscription{/modify} |


Email built with AcyMailing