Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Dear Colleagues,

The Submesoscale Ocean Dynamics and Vertical Transport Experiment (S-MODE) is a NASA Earth Venture Suborbital (EVS-3) mission that utilizes research aircraft equipped with state-of-the-art remote sensing instruments, a research vessel, Wave Gliders, Saildrones, and many other in situ assets. These instruments contribute to an unprecedented view of the physics of submesoscale eddies and fronts, and their effects on vertical transport in the upper ocean.

S-MODE is committed to full and open sharing of scientific data obtained during field campaigns with all users as soon as it becomes available. The data from the S-MODE Pilot campaign that took place from October 18 – November 8, 2021 will be publicly available through NASA’s Physical Oceanography Distributed Active Archive Center (PO.DAAC) at https://podaac.jpl.nasa.gov/S-MODE. As such, the S-MODE team is planning its first Open Data Workshop, which will be held virtually on 1 December 2022 from 11:00am - 1:00pm ET. We invite everyone in the scientific community to attend this workshop to hear about the S-MODE mission, to learn about its instrumentation, and find out how to access and use its data products.

If you are interested in attending, please register here by 11/18/22. A calendar invite will be sent out closer to the workshop date to anyone that registers. The agenda can be found at https://espo.nasa.gov/s-mode/content/S-MODE_2022_Open_Data_Workshop. Please feel free to forward this to any of your colleagues who may be interested. We look forward to working with you!

Best Regards,

Tom Farrar (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution), Frederick Bingham (UNC-Wilmington), Erin Czech (NASA Ames Research Center), Victoria McDonald (NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory), Jack McNelis (NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory)

The S-MODE investigation is composed of a Pilot Campaign (Fall 2021) and two Intensive Operating Periods (IOP-1 and IOP-2, Fall 2022 and Spring 2023). Each field campaign is between 3-4 weeks in duration. Highlights from the S-MODE Pilot campaign, and details about instrumentation and available data products are as follows:

  • The JPL Doppler Scatterometer (DopplerScatt) and the UCLA Multiscale Observing System of the Ocean Surface (MOSES) airborne remote sensing instruments completed 12 science flights over approximately 54 hours onboard a King Air B200 aircraft operated by NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center. Surface velocity and surface wind data were collected by DopplerScatt, while MOSES collected sea surface temperature (SST) data.
  • The Scripps Modular Aerial Sensing System (MASS) completed 10 science flights over approximately 66 hours onboard a Twin Otter DHC-6 aircraft operated by Twin Otter International. MASS collected sea surface displacement, temperature, and kinematic data, which were used to measure ocean waves, currents, Stokes drift, sea surface height (SSH), ocean transport and dispersion, and biological activity.
  • The science team onboard the R/V Oceanus measured 1396 profiles of upper-ocean temperature, salinity, oxygen, and chlorophyll fluorescence. They also collected 87 radiosonde profiles of atmospheric temperature and humidity, including unique over-ocean measurements during a major atmospheric river event.
  • The biology team on the ship collected 94 nutrient samples, 157 discrete chlorophyll samples, and 162 POC samples to enable calibration and proxy-development of the in situ bio-optics and airborne ocean color measurements.
  • Three Wave Gliders operated in formation with each other and collected a number of data sets including wind, precipitation, humidity, temperature, pressure, ocean conductivity, ocean temperature, ocean depth, wave velocity, wave direction, etc.
  • Five Saildrones operated in formation with each other, the Wave Gliders and Oceanus. The Saildrones collected wind, air temperature, and pressure data, as well as ocean salinity, ocean temperature, wave height, and ocean current data.

More information about S-MODE can be found at http://smode.whoi.edu and https://espo.nasa.gov/s-mode.