Ocean-Colour Data in climate studies - NERC Advanced Training course

Monday 18 September 2017 - Friday 22 September 2017

Marine Matters Centre, Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Prospect Place, The Hoe, PL1 3DH

Group of students in the lecture theatre at desks Image courtesy of ESA

This training course provided PhD students and early career researchers with the fundamentals of ocean-colour satellite data and their applications.

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Course materials now available

Course lecture and practical materials are available online via the OceanTeacher Global Academy platform.

To access the course content please register at: http://classroom.oceanteacher.org/login/ and then login from the course page: http://classroom.oceanteacher.org/course/view.php?id=286 with password: OCD_2017

All materials have been recorded and uploaded thanks to Plymouth Marine Laboratory and the International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IOC, UNESCO).

About the course

Remote sensing experts from PML guided students through a combination of lectures and computer-based exercises covering the following topics: 1) Introduction to ocean colour; 2) Modelling primary production; 3) Ocean colour applications for ecosystem state assessment; 4) Climate impacts and feedbacks; 5) Ocean colour in data assimilation; 6) Datasets archive, management, visualisation and analysis.

Students from the course outside of Plymouth Marine Laboratory

During the course, students were exposed to remote-sensing ocean-colour data from the European Space Agency (ESA) Climate Change Initiative (OC-CCI), which provides the most complete, stable, and error-characterized time-series of multi-sensor global satellite data products for climate research and modelling. Students were also introduced to the latest ocean-colour data products from the OLCI sensor aboard the Sentinel-3 satellite. As part of the computer-based exercises, students gained experience in the necessary tools for management of large datasets (including handling files in Network Common Data Form NetCDF) and analysis (including interpolation procedures and uncertainty calculations). There was also the opportunity of informal discussion with instructors outside of the formal lectures. A visit of the NERC Earth Observation Data Acquisition and Analysis Service (NEODAAS) that is hosted at PML was provided. 

This event was held in the Marine Matters Centre (MMC) at Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Plymouth, UK.


The objectives and learning outcomes of this course were for students to be able to:
• Understand the fundamentals of ocean colour;
• Understand the principles for modelling primary production, for detecting phytoplankton size structure, Harmful Algal Blooms, and for estimating phytoplankton phenology;
• Conduct research with ocean-colour data for ecosystem state assessment, model validation, data assimilation and climate research;
• Plan requirements for large datasets processing, management and archiving;
• Apply tools and statistical methods for visualisation and analysis of ocean-colour data with their associated uncertainty. 

For any enquiries please contact Marie-Fanny Racault (mfrtNOSPAM@pml.ac.uk)

Organising Committee

Marie-Fanny Racault, PML
Shubha Sathyendranath, PML
Sophie Seeyave, Partnership for Observation of the Global Oceans (POGO), PML 
Ben Taylor, NERC Earth Observation Data Acquisition and Analysis Service (NEODAAS), Plymouth, UK 

Lecturers from Earth Observation and Modelling groups at PML:
Bob Brewin, Stefano Ciavatta, Hayley Evers-King, Thomas Jackson, Trevor Platt, Marie-Fanny Racault, Dionysios Raitsos, Shubha Sathyendranth, Ben Taylor 


This is course was primarily funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC):

With support from:
OceanTeacher Global Academy Logo European Commission logo
Copernicus logo Eumetsat logo


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