Central RI

The Central Research Infrastructure is in charge of facilitating the consolidation the improvement and the sustainability of European countries to Argo. This activity is carried on by the Program Manager, assisted by the project office in partnership with the ERIC partners for :

1. Project management and communication 

The structure adopted for the project management, with its project office and the Steering Committee, has proven quite effective in monitoring the project planning and progress, thus ensuring that deadlines were met, and that all project reports were submitted timely.

Several project meetings were organized, and all documentation has been made available on the project web site. Ifremer participated to European Commission meeting and workshops on ESFRI research infrastructures and has provided regular inputs on progress and issues to the European Commission.

A great financial work has been made by Ifremer, as project Coordinator who managed the budget, prepared the financial and administrative reports for the Commission, and transferred to the partners their share of the Commission grant.

Different communication activities have been carried out. WWW site, brochures, posters and a Euro-Argo movie (DVD) were prepared. The Euro-Argo movie is a 10 minutes movie that provides a comprehensive description of Euro-Argo and its application. It features interviews of the contributors and stakeholders (Copernicus, DG research). Euro-Argo progress have also been presented to Argo international partners as the Argo Steering Team meetings every march.

A consortium agreement (CA) has been prepared, and endorsed by the Contractors. It has served as the basis of the CA signed by the Consortium to carry on the Euro-Argo activities in the interim period from the end of the project (June 2011) to the establishment of the ERIC.

2. Strengthening the user community 
Set up and run a European Argo User Group 

Three Euro-Argo user group scientific meetings have been held with the aims of improving information flow among the group and thus assisting in problem solving (technical, scientific or data). A further objective is to enable the European Argo community to play a stronger role in international Argo programme.

  • The first Euro Argo User Group meeting took place at Southampton in June 2008, with invited talks, posters, submitted talks and round-table discussions. It was attended by 63 scientists from 9 countries.
  • The second took place in June 2009 in Trieste, Italy and attended by 49 scientists from 10 countries. The Trieste workshop was supplemented by a training day for new Argo data users.
  • The third workshop was held over 2 days in June 2010 at the Institute Océanographique in Paris. It was attended by 63 scientists from 15 countries.
  • A Euro-Argo Users mailing list has been established.

Euro Argo member countries have been encouraged to discover Argo data users previously unknown to the main partners. In the UK this has revealed a total of 50 individuals and/or projects. France has also been running workshop for its users to inform them on Argo data processing and QC issues.

Capacity building, training-new EC and non-EC countries 

A priority target has been to contribute to implement Argo in the Black Sea. A EuroArgo Black Sea meeting was organized in Varna (Bulgaria) in December 2009, including a full day of talks and discussions, and one day onboard R/V Akademik to deploy the first EuroArgo float (a Provor kindly donated by France) in the south-western Black Sea. Representatives from Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Russia, the Black Sea Commission, took part in these activities.

In addition, OGS has been continuously promoting Euro-Argo and encouraging participation in several Eastern Mediterranean countries, such as Cyprus and Israel. Two Argo floats were deployed in the Eastern Mediterranean in December 2009 with the help of oceanographers from Cyprus. OGS organized and hosted a Euro-Argo information and training day on 18 June 2009 in Trieste, just after the 2nd Euro-Argo Users Workshop, attended by more than 20 people from Italy, Slovenia, Spain, UK, Germany and France.

Ifremer participated to European Commission meeting and workshops on ESFRI research infrastructures and has provided regular inputs on progress and issues to the European Commission.