Contribution to Argo international

The aim of Euro-Argo is to provide, deploy and operate ¼ of the global Argo floats array.

The initial target of the Argo international programme was a data coverage of 1 float per 3x3° grid cell and month over the global ocean. This data coverage is deemed to be sufficient to resolve many of the important global climate signals and support the enhanced real-time requirements of operational modelling applications in oceanography and meteorology. The Argo float distribution reveals that the network density nearly meets the initial target through the conscientious efforts of all involved partners, although some parts of the global array are already over-sampled while others are still under-sampled. A new international target has been sketched for 2020 for the core-Argo mission, with enhanced coverage in regions of specific interest such as western boundary currents, tropics or marginal seas.

The main challenges for Euro-Argo for the coming years are to sustain the core-Argo programme and to implement the new phase of Argo with an extension towards biogeochemistry, the polar oceans, the marginal seas and the deep ocean. The strategy for the European contribution to the international network is defined in a reference document that will continue to be revised regularly, taking into account both technological developments and the international Argo strategy.

The Euro-Argo ERIC is represented in international Argo bodies: the Argo Steering Team, the Argo Data Management Team, and contributes to the Argo Information Centre.