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The WHOI Float Group is involved in several projects that seek to increase scientific understanding of the Arctic, one of the most under-observed areas of the ocean. Deployments of profiling floats in the Arctic complement the use of Ice-Tethered Profilers, instruments that use similar technology but are attached to the ice rather than free-drifting.

Stratified Ocean Dynamics of the Arctic (SODA)

Funded by the Office of Naval Research, SODA brings together scientists from several institutions to intensively survey the Arctic using a variety of observing tools, including floats. WHOI Float Group members deploy ALAMO floats programmed to measure temperature and salinity from the ocean surface down to a depth of 1200 meters.


Arctic Heat Open Science Experiment

Float Group members deploy ALAMO floats as part of the NOAA-funded Arctic Heat Open Science Experiment. This project aims to bridge the upper ocean observation gap in the Arctic marginal seas through the deployment of innovative new autonomous floats and other near real-time weather and ocean-sensing systems. Data from the Arctic Heat project are made publicly available. Download Arctic Heat data.

Marginal Ice Zone (MIZ) Program

The Office of Naval Research MIZ initiative employs an integrated program of observations and numerical simulations to investigate ice–ocean–atmosphere dynamics in and around the emerging seasonal marginal ice zone in the Beaufort Sea. 12 WHOI Polar Profiling floats will be deployed as part of this project.

Polar Argo

The international Argo program is expanding its array of floats into seasonally ice-covered seas at the poles. The WHOI Float Group is beginning deployments of Argo floats in the Arctic, as well as piloting deployments for other institutions.