Erik van Sebille - Tracking stuff with Lagrangian Ocean Analysis: answers to the ‘why’, and questions on the 'how'

Event type: 
10 October 2018
2.00 - 3.00 pm

Climate Change Research Centre, Seminar Room, Mathews Building 4th floor, UNSW, Sydney

Dr. Erik van Sebille
Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research, Utrecht University, Netherlands
Climate Change Research Centre, UNSW

Lagrangian Ocean analysis, where virtual particle trajectories are computed from OGCM velocity fields, has proven to provide a valuable way to analyse the output of models such as MOM and NEMO. The Lagrangian analysis of model velocity fields has helped to answer questions ranging from the transport of heat, nutrients, and plastic litter, to dynamical analysis of the flow itself. The question is how we can make optimal use of these Lagrangian tools, and what is then required from the OGCMS? For example, which fields need to be saved, at what temporal resolution? How do we treat parameterised physics such as convection? How do we implement advection and diffusion of offline virtual particles in a similar way as within the OGCM schemes? And how about the technical implementation? Just as OGCMs deal with up to hundreds of terabytes data, so Lagrangian Analysis tools need to process such enormous amount of data. In this presentation, Erik will introduce the project, where they build Parcels: a new Lagrangian Ocean Analysis framework, designed to process the output of state-of-the-art models. To combine modularity, user-friendliness and efficiency, the model API is implemented in Python before being compiled in C and executed as a library.


Speaker Biography: Erik van Sebille is a physical oceanographer from Utrecht University in Netherlands. He worked at the CCRC from 2011 to 2015, where he had a DECRA to study the circulation around Australia. His research focus has since moved to ocean plastic litter, and he is now one of the global experts on the transport, fate and impacts of marine litter.