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UNESCO IOC Reports on Robotic Sensors Ocean Project

21 January 2013: The Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has reported that, by November 2012, ocean robots that conduct ocean monitoring, also known as Argo floats, had collected their millionth profile of temperature and salinity.

The robots, or Argo floats, are a key component of the UNESCO-IOC led Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS). GSOS is a collaborative partnership of over 30 countries, working together to provide a global array of over 3,000 profiling floats that measure the temperature and the salinity of the global ocean in real time, over all ocean areas without ice-cover.

According to UNESCO IOC, Argo makes visible large-scale ocean and climate features and processes, thereby improving knowledge on ocean dynamics that are helping society understand and forecast global climate. Furthermore, Argo observes changes in ocean salinity that reveal variations in the hydrological cycle.

UNESCO-IOC underscores that a better understanding of the ocean is needed to improve climate projections, reduce risks stemming from storms and floods, and optimize governmental climate change mitigation policies. [UNESCO Press Release] [Argo Programme Website] [Publication: Argo Brochure: One Million Temperature/Salinity Profiles]