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Institute of Oceanography

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Ocean waves
Foto: UHH/IfM/T. Wasilewski
Physical Oceanography

Physical Oceanography is used exclusively for physical marine science, i.e. the physics of the ocean. The aim of physical oceanography is to provide a systematic understanding and quantitative description of the ocean by means of the relevant physical parameters (i.e. temperature, salinity, density, pressure as well as three-dimensional current field).

Researchers onboard of a research vessel
Foto: UHH/IfM
Experimental Oceanography

In Experimental Oceanography, data is collected during ship expeditions or labratory experiments. Permanently anchored moorings are also measuring data at a certain place for a longer period of time.

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SMOS Satellite above a modelled earth.
Foto: UHH/IfM
Remote Sensing & Assimilation

Many important surface parameters of the ocean can be measured globally and for a longer period of time via satellites or airplanes, which provides a better data coverage in space and time. This data is used in physical Oceanography to validate numerical models, but also to constrain numerical models by data assimilation.

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Slider Climate Modelling
Foto: UHH/CEN/IfM/D.Domeisen
Climate modelling

The climate modeling research group works to improve the understanding of the variability of the climate system through the use of global climate models. A particular focus is on the variability of the oceanic and atmospheric circulation, and in particular its predictability at seasonal-to-decadal time scales.

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Helgoland Coast
Foto: UHH/IfM/A. Moll
Shelf Sea Oceanography

The working group 'Shelf Sea Oceanography' deals with numerical simulations of shelf sea dynamics or the dynamics on contintental margins in the ocean. Main working areas are the North Sea, the North West European shelf, the Baltic Sea, Arctic Shelf Seas and the Northeast Atlantic.

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Monthly mean temperatures and currents in 50 m depth from a high-resolution model
Foto: UHH/L. Czeschel
Theoretical Oceanography

Theoretical Oceanography attempts to provide the mathematical and physical basis of the dynamics and kinematics of the ocean. Oceanographers try to formulate simplified analytical models to explain certain aspects of the ocean.

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Monthly mean temperature and currents in 50m depth from a high resolution model simulation.

Research Vessel Maria S. Merian.
Foto: UHH/N. Verch
Control Station German Research Vessels

The 'Control Station German Research Vessels' is located at the Institute of Oceanography and organizes the operation of the research vessels METEOR and MARIA S. MERIAN. These ships are underway across the oceans for fundamental research and for scientific cooperation with other states.


Waltraut Domke-Sommer
Institute of Oceanography
Bundesstr. 53
20146 Hamburg
Fax: +49 40 42838-7488

Print | Last update: 6 July 2016 by Meike Demgen(meike.demgen"AT"uni-hamburg.de)
Universität Hamburg