Abstract's details

New insights from the sea level budget

Eric Leuliette (NOAA Laboratory for Satellite Altimetry, United States)

Event: 2016 Ocean Surface Topography Science Team Meeting

Session: Science I: Current and past mean sea level observations

Presentation type: Type Poster

Contribution: PDF file


Balancing the sea-level budget is critical to understanding recent and future climate change as well as balancing Earth's energy budget and water budget. During the last decade, advancements in the ocean observing system — satellite altimeters, hydrographic profiling floats, and space-based gravity missions — have allowed the global mean sea level budget to be assessed with unprecedented accuracy from direct, rather than inferred, estimates. In particular, several recent studies have used the sea-level budget to bound the rate of deep ocean warming [e.g. Llovel et al. 2014].

On a bi-monthly basis, the sum of the steric component estimated from Argo and the ocean mass (barystatic) component from GRACE agree with total sea level from Jason within the estimated uncertainties with the residual difference having an r.m.s. less than 2 mm [Leuliette 2014]. Direct measurements of ocean warming above 2000 m depth during January 2005 and July 2016 explain about one-third of the observed annual rate of global mean sea-level rise.

Extending the understanding of the sea-level budget from global mean sea level to regional patterns of sea level change is crucial for identifying regional differences in recent sea level change. The local sea-level budget can be used to identify any systematic errors in the global ocean observing system. Using the residuals from closing the sea level budget, we demonstrate that systematic regional errors remain, in part due to Argo sampling. We present a new analysis of the steric component of the budget using the recently released Simple Ocean Data Assimilation reanalysis version 3 (SODA 3).


Poster show times:

Room Start Date End Date
Grande Halle Thu, Nov 03 2016,11:00 Thu, Nov 03 2016,18:00
Eric Leuliette
NOAA Laboratory for Satellite Altimetry
United States