The aim of SOLAS is to provide a framework to encourage the fullest participation of multinational, regional, and national efforts in its scientific activities. It does not impose a rigid template on the nature of these efforts.

Support letter from SOLAS

If your research proposal is within the science areas defined in the SOLAS 2015-2025 Science Plan and Organisation, you could ask for a letter of support from SOLAS to add to your proposal. To do so, send the SOLAS International Project Office a summary of the research activities you're proposing precising which SOLAS activities it adresses, also mention the features which you wish to have outlined within the support letter.

Once your project gets funded, think about requesting a SOLAS endorsement for it.

Project endorsement by SOLAS

If you are principal investigator of a funded research project within the science areas defined in the SOLAS 2015-2025 Science Plan and Organisation, you could ask SOLAS to formaly endorse your project. To do so, fill up the downloadable form available here and send it to the SOLAS International Project Office. In addition if there is a national representative in your country, inform him/her about your project.

As principal investigator of a SOLAS endorsed project, you will be asked to report annually on the progress of your project to SOLAS. You will be encouraged to use the SOLAS outlets (Newsletter, Website, e-bulletin) to inform the community about the progress of your endorsed project.

Current SOLAS endorsed projects

SOLAS currently has a number of endorsed projects along with many other projects which are conducted under the SOLAS umbrella.

The Great Barrier Reef as a significant source of climatically relevant aerosol particles

The Great Barrier Reef as a significant source of climatically relevant aerosol particles

Endorsed since September 2016

Understanding the role of clouds in the warming and cooling of the planet, and how that role changes in a warming world is one of the biggest uncertainties climate change researchers face. A key feature in this regard is the influence on cloud properties of cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), the very small atmospheric aerosol particles necessary for the nucleation of every single cloud droplet. The anthropogenic contribution to CCN is known to be large in some regions; however, the natural processes that regulate CCN over large parts of the globe are less well understood, and particularly in the Great Barrier Reef. The production of new aerosol particles from biogenic sources (forests, marine biota, etc) is a frequent phenomenon capable of affecting aerosol concentrations, and therefore CCN, on both regional and global scales. The biogenic aerosol particles therefore have a major influence on cloud properties and hence climate and the hydrological cycle. Determining the magnitude and drivers of biogenic aerosol production in different ecosystems is therefore crucial for the future development of climate models.

Stretching over 2600 km, along the coast of Queensland, the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) is one of the largest and most important ecosystems in Australia. This project will aim to determine the magnitude and drivers of biogenic aerosol production from the GBR.

The fundamental questions that this study will address are:

  1. What is the significance of this ecosystem as a natural source of aerosol particles?
  2. How strong is this source at the regional level?
  3. What is the mechanism of particle production over the GBR?

Measurements will be made via two platforms. The first is Australia’s RV Investigator which will spend 30 days at sea in close proximity to the Great Barrier Reef. The second is the new Australian AIR-BOX, a portable laboratory containing cutting edge atmospheric monitoring equipment which will be deployed downwind of the reef at Misson Beach during the voyage.

CSIRO chemical transport modelling (CTM)  will be used to explore the influence of different sources (marine and terrestrial), meteorology and transport on the reactive gases and aerosols observed over the reef. CTM will also be used to explore the vertical distribution of aerosols and CCN in the MBL to determine the influence of both local and distant sources to CCN at cloud height. The data set produced will be used to test and validate aerosol production mechanisms in GLOMAP (Global Model of Aerosol Processes), which will ensure accurate representation of aerosol processes in ACCESS (Australian Community Climate Earth System Simulator).


Principal Investigator is Zoran Ristovski (

Tudor Hill Marine-Atmospheric Observatory

Tudor Hill Marine-Atmospheric Observatory

Endorsed since June 2016

The Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS) Marine-Atmospheric Observatory provides an atmospheric sampling tower and site laboratories at Tudor Hill, Bermuda, in support of ongoing and future research by the U.S. and international scientific community. This facility provides the only permanent atmospheric sampling and observation platform in the marine boundary layer of the western subtropical North Atlantic Ocean. Originally constructed in 1987, since 2002 the facility has been operated with support from the U.S. NSF Chemical Oceanography and Atmospheric Chemistry Programs.  The facility is a host site for the NOAA Cooperative Air Sampling Network, NASA’s AERONET program and Environment Canada’s Global Atmospheric Passive Sampling (GAPS) program.

The objectives of the Tudor Hill program are:

1) To operate and maintain a state-of-the-art marine atmospheric sampling and observing facility at Tudor Hill, Bermuda;
2) To collect continuous meteorological data and weekly bulk-aerosol and rainwater samples, which are archived at BIOS and made freely available to other researchers;
3) To collect additional atmospheric samples and data for other investigators (primarily in longer-term time-series programs), and to provide for the use of the facility by other investigators (primarily in shorter-term intensive programs).


Principal Investigator is Andrew J. Peters (


NAAMES: North Atlantic Aerosols and Marine Ecosystems Study

NAAMES: North Atlantic Aerosols and Marine Ecosystems Study

Endorsed since November 2015

The North Atlantic Aerosols and Marine Ecosystems Study (NAAMES) is a five year investigation to resolve key processes controlling ocean system function, their influences on atmospheric aerosols and clouds and their implications for climate.

Observations obtained during four, targeted ship and aircraft measurement campaigns, combined with the continuous satellite and in situ ocean sensor records, will enable improved predictive capabilities of Earth system processes and will inform ocean management and assessment of ecosystem change.


Principal Investigator is Mike Behrenfeld ( and Project Manager is Mary Kleb (


ICDC: International Carbon Dioxide Conference 2017

ICDC: International Carbon Dioxide Conference 2017

Endorsed since January 2016

10th International Carbon Dioxide Conference, 21-25 August 2017, Interlaken, Switzerland

The Swiss science community and the Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research are proud to organize the 10th anniversary International Carbon Dioxide Conference (ICDC). The first conference of this series took place in Bern, Switzerland, and we now bring the conference back to the Bern area.

The focus of ICDC10 is on changes in carbon dioxide and the carbon cycle, and their interactions and links to climate and human activities from the regional to the global scale, and from the past into the future.

The ICDC10 will be held back-to-back with the WMO/IAEA Meeting on Carbon Dioxide, other Greenhouse Gases and Related Measurement Techniques (GGMT-2017) in Dübendorf, Switzerland

The purpose of this conference is to bring together scientists from different disciplines to work towards an integrated view on the global cycle of carbon in the Earth System. Spatial scales considered range from local and regional towards global synthesis, temporal scales from hours to millennia. Periods addressed include the contemporary, industrial, and future, as well as the last millennia, glacial/interglacial, and stadial/interstadial periods.

Topics will include:

  • trends and variability in carbon stocks and fluxes
  • land use and land management
  • carbon-ecosystem-climate feedbacks and vulnerabilities
  • extreme events
  • linkages between CO2 and other greenhouse gases and between carbon and related tracers (e.g., oxygen, nutrients, and isotopes)
  • direct and indirect effects of high CO2 including ocean acidification
  • natural and anthropogenic drivers
  • allowable anthropogenic carbon emissions to meet multiple climate targets
  • emission mitigation
  • information from atmospheric, oceanic, terrestrial measurements and monitoring networks, from paleo archives, from process, inverse, and Earth System models

Mailing list subscription form

Air-Sea Lab: Climate-air pollution interaction in coastal environment

Air-Sea Lab: Climate-air pollution interaction in coastal environment

Endorsed since February 2015

Air-Sea Lab is an Italia-Ireland bilateral project funded by CNR. The main objective of the joint Lab is to study the interactions between air pollution and climate in the coastal environment, with particular focus on aerosol physico-chemical properties, aerosol-cloud interactions and near coastal boundary layer structure and dynamics.

AIR-SEA LAB directly addresses the following science issues from the International SOLAS Science Plan and Implementation Strategy:
Focus 1: Biogeochemical Interactions and Feedbacks Between Ocean and Atmosphere
Activity 1.1 – Marine Particle Emissions
Activity 1.2 – Trace Gas Emissions
Activity 1.3 – Dimethylsulphide & climate
Activity 1.4 – Iron and Marine Productivity
Activity 1.5 – Ocean-Atmosphere Cycling of Nitrogen

Focus 2: Exchange Processes at the Air-Sea Interface and the Role of Transport and Transformation in the Atmospheric and Oceanic Boundary Layers
Activity 2.1 – Air-Sea Interface
Activity 2.2 – Oceanic Boundary Layer
Activity 2.3 – Atmospheric Boundary Layer

Project Coordinators are Maria Cristina Facchini ( and Colin O’Dowd (

Project website:

SOLAS Italy website:

WACS II-Western Atlantic Climate Study II (cruise)

Western Atlantic Climate Study II (WACS II)

Endorsed since October 2013

WACS II is a research cruise planned for the North Atlantic from May 19 to June 6, 2014 onboard the WHOI RV Knorr. Primary objectives include the characterization of freshly emitted SSA properties including chemical composition, size distribution, number concentration, cloud nucleating ability, light scattering and absorption. Simultaneous measurements of sea surface properties will allow for an assessment of links between seawater and SSA properties. Of particular interest is the impact of ocean microbiology on SSA composition and cloud‐nucleating ability.

The WACS II working area includes the phytoplankton bloom region of the North Atlantic and south through the chlorophyll gradient into the oligotrophic waters of the Sargasso Sea. Measurements will be made at a series of stations across the high to low chlorophyll gradient and during transits between stations. Sea days will be divided into approximately 12 days on station and 7 days of transit.

The outcome of this project contributes to the SOLAS Mid-Term Strategy on Ocean-derived aerosols: production, evolution and impacts.

Annual Report of 2014

NETCARE-NETwork on Climate and Aerosols

NETwork on Climate and Aerosols: Addressing Key Uncertainties in Remote Canadian Environments (NETCARE)

Endorsed since October 2013

Project Website

To improve the accuracy of climate predictions, the direct radiative effects of aerosol and the impacts of aerosol on clouds and precipitation have to be comprehensively addressed; it is well recognized that they represent the largest uncertainties in radiative forcing estimates. Moreover, in contrast to urban regions where extensive work has been conducted, remote regions (e.g., the Canadian Arctic) remain comparatively unstudied despite the need to establish a baseline against which future change can be evaluated. With naturally low aerosol levels, such regions are particularly sensitive to anthropogenic input. According to the Integrated Assessment of Black Carbon and Tropospheric Ozone by UNEP and WMO in 2011, reductions in black carbon emissions would substantially reduce Arctic warming over the next several decades. However, current models vary greatly in their ability to characterize aerosol in these remote regions. This leads to little confidence in our predictions of climate response to changing levels of short-lived forcing agents, such as black carbon, as regulations evolve in Asia, and as shipping and industry increase in the Arctic. Likewise, enhanced global warming will drive feedbacks in the Earth system whereby Arctic Ocean waters will open to a greater degree, thus increasing rates of DMS emission and biogenically-driven aerosol formation. Also, the predicted increase in boreal forest fires in a warmer climate may lead to more black carbon transport to remote regions. Additional uncertainties in climate predictions arise from a fundamental lack of understanding of aerosol sources, sinks, optical properties, and cloud impacts; for example, the mechanisms and impacts of ice cloud formation, an important mechanism for precipitation, are especially poorly quantified. This complexity requires a concerted approach to better define the mechanisms at play and to establish their role in the present and future climate system.

NETCARE is comprised of the leading scientists in the Canadian climate-aerosol community. The central impetus within the network is that the key uncertainties in this field must be addressed by multidisciplinary studies of interacting components of the Earth system, particularly the ocean, atmosphere, and cryosphere. As well, a range of techniques, extending from satellite and in situ field measurements, lab studies, and models including the Canadian Global Climate Model (GCM), is required to move forward. It is only through detailed field studies supported by process-level modeling that we can develop confidence in larger scale parameterizations within climate models. Similarly, measurements across a range of domains that extend from the surface through the atmosphere are needed to complement remote sensing measurements at single sites. While the fundamental understanding to be gained is widely applicable, the network will focus on the Arctic and Western Canada so as to have maximum impact. Observations will extend across the Arctic from land stations, an icebreaker, and research aircraft. As well, we will assess anthropogenic, biomass burning, and marine aerosol input to Western Canada given the potential for significant effects arising from changing Asian emissions and forest fire activity.

The outcome of this project contributes to the SOLAS Mid-Term Strategies on Ocean-derived aerosols: production, evolution and impacts and Sea-ice biogeochemistry and interactions with the atmosphere.

OASIS-Ocean Atmosphere Sea Ice Snowpack

Ocean Atmosphere Sea Ice Snowpack (OASIS)

Endorsed since October 2013

Project Website

The Ocean - Atmosphere - Sea Ice - Snowpack (OASIS) program was created in 2004 as an international multidisciplinary group focussed on studying chemical and physical exchange processes among the title reservoirs. The main themes of OASIS are the interrelationships between climate and tropospheric chemistry as well as surface/biosphere feedbacks in the Arctic. Sea ice is undergoing rapid change in the Arctic, transitioning from a perennial or mutli-year ice (MYI) pack to a thinner, seasonal first-year ice (FYI) pack, thereby transforming into a more Antarctic -like system. Such changes in critical snow, ice. and atmospheric interfaces will likely have large impacts system wide - from habitat loss to dramatic changes in heat and water vapor fluxes to changes in atmospheric chemistry. OASIS scientists are deeply involved in studies aimed at understanding interactions among components of the Ocean - Atmosphere - Sea Ice - Snowpack system and potential feedbacks at their most fundamental levels.

A more detailed description of OASIS and future needs for Polar research can be found in:

Shepson, P.B., Ariya, P.B., Deal, C., Donaldson, D.J., Douglas, T.A., Maksym, T., Matrai, P.A., Russell, L.M., Saenz, B., Stefels, J., and Steiner, N. (2012) OASIS: Brining Scientists together from multiple disciplines to study changes and feedbacks in the polar environments.  Eos, Transactions of the American Geophysical Union 93( 11), 117-124.


The outcome of this project contributes to the SOLAS Mid-Term Strategy on Sea-ice biogeochemistry and interactions with the atmosphere

Annual Report of 2014

DONUT-Dependence of dissolved organic matter cycling on atmospheric inputs of nutrients

Dependence of dissolved organic matter cycling on atmospheric inputs of nutrients (DONUT)

Endorsed since March 2013

The main goal of DONUT is to assess how and to which extent the response of heterotrophic prokaryotes to atmospheric inputs of nutrients shape the DOM pool and modify its bioavailability. There are recent evidences of the preferential uptake of dust- derived nutrients by heterotrophic prokaryotes resulting in heterotrophic processes being more stimulated by dust pulses compared to autotrophic processes. How can we go further on our understanding of the consequences of these results on C cycling? The stimulation of bacterial respiration by dust pulses during the stratification period would decrease the amount of carbon susceptible to be exported to depth through winter mixing. Nevertheless, the efficiency of the Microbial Carbon Pump depends not only on the amount
of carbon in the dissolved pool but also on the characteristics of the DOM which may modify its residence time in the water column. How and to what extent dust pulses can, through the stimulation of Hprok activity, shape the surface DOM pool remains totally unexplored and constitute one bottleneck to our advances to understand the role of atmospheric deposition on marine C cycle. The DONUT strategy is based on the experimental assessment of the transformation of DOM during bacterial degradation under simulated dust inputs.


The outcome of this project contributes to the SOLAS Mid-Term Strategy on Atmospheric control of nutrient cycling and production in the surface ocean

ADEPT-Aerosol deposition and ocean plankton dynamics

Aerosol deposition and ocean plankton dynamics (ADEPT)

Endorsed since October 2011

Project Website

ADEPT addresses the study of the effect of atmospheric aerosol deposition on the dynamics of a marine LNLC (low nutrient low chlorophyll) system, namely the Mediterranean. To achieve its goal, ADEPT uses a multiscale and complementary approach. Relationships between atmospheric deposition and ocean nutrient and plankton dynamics are studied at a coastal scale and at the Mediterranean basin scale. Laboratory experiments focus to understand some of the underlying mechanisms.

ADEPT is a scientific project (CTM2011-23458) funded by the Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación (Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation)

Annual Report of 2014

The outcome of this project contributes to the SOLAS Mid-Term Strategy on Ocean-derived aerosols: production, evolution and impacts

CARBOCHANGE-Changes in carbon uptake and emissions by oceans in a changing climate

Changes in carbon uptake and emissions by oceans in a changing climate (CARBOCHANGE)

Endorsed since August 2011

Project Website

The overall goal is to determine the ocean’s quantitative role for uptake of human-produced carbon dioxide, and to investigate how large this uptake rate has been in the past, how it is changing at present, and how it will evolve in the future.This is essential knowledge to assess the expected consequences of rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations and to guide the management of CO2 emission reductions.

Annual Report of 2014

MERMEX-Marine ecosystems response in the Mediterranean experiment

Marine ecosystems response in the Mediterranean experiment (MERMEX)

Endorsed since August 2011

Project Website

There are still considerable uncertainties in our understanding of the complex interactions between the different forcings and their impacts on Mediterranean ecosystems. There is therefore a strong need to reach a mechanistic understanding of the relevant processes in order to predict changes in ecosystems. The most relevant issues for the future of marine ecosystems in the Mediterranean constitute the main research axes that MERMEX propose to tackle in the next 10 years.

MERMEX 2012 Annual report

SOAP-Surface ocean aerosol production

Surface ocean aerosol production (SOAP)

Endorsed since August 2011

Project Website

The frontal regions around New Zealand are highly productive, with the Sub-Tropical Front that runs eastwards along the Chatham Rise characterised by intensive phytoplankton blooms. A preliminary survey of this region in February 2011 during a PreSOAP voyage encountered blooms of different phytoplankton groups with differing DMS & CO2 signatures.
An international team will further determine the production of aerosol precursors by phytoplankton blooms, their subsequent emissions to the atmosphere, and the production and size distribution of aerosols in the overlying marine boundary layer (MBL) during the SOAP voyage in 2012. Initial mapping of phytoplankton blooms around the productive Sub-Tropical Front along the Chatham Rise will be followed by selection of sites for focussed studies.

Annual Report of 2014

The outcome of this project contributes to the SOLAS Mid-Term Strategy on Ocean-derived aerosols: production, evolution and impacts

MedSeA-Mediterranean Sea acidification

Mediterranean Sea acidification (MedSeA)

Endorsed since February 2011

Project Website

Increases in atmospheric C02 and associated decreases in seawater pH and carbonate ion concentration this century and beyond are likely to have wide impacts on marine ecosystems including those of the Mediterranean sea. Consequences of this process, ocean acidification, threaten the health of the Mediterranean, adding to the anthropogenic pressures, including those from climate change. Yet in comparison to other areas of the world ocean, there has been no concerted effort to study Mediterranean acidification, which is fundamental to the social and economic conditions of more than 400 million people living in Mediterranean countries and another 175 million who visit the region each year. The MedSeA project addresses ecologic and economic impacts from the combined influences of anthropogenic acidification and warming, while accounting for the unique characteristics of this key region. The project was granted a 6 months extension and will now be ending in July 2014.

Annual Report of 2014

BIOACID-Biological impacts of ocean acidification

Biological impacts of ocean acidification (BIOACID)

Endorsed since November 2009

Project Website

The growing evidence of potential biological impacts of ocean acidification affirms that this global change phenomenon may pose a serious threat to marine organisms and ecosystems. Despite a wealth of knowledge on specific effects of acidification and the related changes in seawater chemistry on the physiology of individual marine taxa, many uncertainties still remain. Because the majority of studies are based on single species experiments, little is presently known about possible impacts on natural communities, food webs and ecosystems. Moreover, few studies have addressed possible interacting effects of environmental changes occurring in parallel, such as ocean acidification, warming, and deoxygenation and changes in surface layer stratification and nutrient supply. Almost completely unknown at present is the potential for evolutionary adaptation to ocean acidification.

The overarching focus of BIOACID II will be to address and better understand the chain from biological mechanisms, through individual organism responses, through food web and ecosystem effects, to economic impacts.
The second phase of BIOACID began in September 2012 and will last three years. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports the project that is coordinated by GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel with 8.77 million Euros.

Annual Report of 2014

CHOICE-C-Carbon cycling in China Seas - budget, controls and ocean acidification

Carbon cycling in China Seas - budget, controls and ocean acidification (CHOICE-C)

Endorsed since November 2009

CHOICE-C focuses on the carbon budget, controls, ecological responses and future changes in coastal ocean systems. The focal area includes, but is not limited to, the continental shelves of both the South and East China Seas.

Annual Report of 2014

FLATOCOA-Flux atmosphérique d'origine continentale sur l'Océan Austral

Flux atmosphérique d'origine continentale sur l'Océan Austral (FLATOCOA)

Endorsed since July 2009

Project Website

The goal is to know the amount of continental atmospheric dust deposited on the South Ocean, including determination of the bioavailable fraction. Special attention is given on Fe and other micro-nutrients, including Zn, Cd, Mn, P, Si and Co. The atmospheric total deposition flux and the atmospheric dust concentration will be measured during 2 years at Kerguelen with an integration time of two weeks. Solubility experiments will be done on collected dust to get informations on bioavailability of micro-nutrients. A transportation/deposition model will be used to extrapolate at a largestscale possible. In addition, another station will run for 1 year (2010) at Crozet island to assess gradient informations on a 1000 km scale.

FLATOCOA 2011 Annual report

Past SOLAS endorsed projects


EPOCA-European project on ocean acidification

European project on ocean acidification (EPOCA)

Ended in 2012

Project Website

The EU FP7 Project EPOCA was launched in May 2008 with the overall goal to advance our understanding of the biological, ecological, biogeochemical, and societal implications of ocean acidification.

EPOCA 2011 Annual report

DUNE-Dust experiment in a low nutrient, low chlorophyll ecosystem

Dust experiment in a low nutrient, low chlorophyll ecosystem (DUNE)

Ended in 2011

Project Website

The main goal of DUNE, a dust experiment in a low-nutrient, low-chlorophyll ecosystem, is to estimate the impact of atmospheric inputs on an oligotrophic ecosystem subjected to strong atmospheric inputs.

DUNE 2011 Annual report

CARBOOCEAN-Marine carbon source and sink assessment

Marine carbon source and sink assessment (CARBOOCEAN)

Ended in 2009

Project Website

The project aimed for an accurate scientific assessment of the marine carbon sources and sinks within space and time. It focused on the Atlantic and Southern Oceans and a time interval of -200 to +200 years from now.

CARBOOCEAN final report

P2P-Precursors to particles 2006 (Ended in 2008)

Precursors to particles 2006

Ended in 2008

This campaign used the Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station as the major measurement platform to build on measurements already made as part of the Cape Grim Program.The Cape Grim Station is one of 23 Global Atmosphere Watch Stations and has been in continuous operation for over 30 years. Results from this project have been published as a special issue of Environmental Chemistry (Vol. 4(3), 2007).

- last update September 2016 -