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CINEL: Circulation and water mass properties in the NorthEastern Levantine

The main goals of this project are to measure the currents and water mass properties in the northeastern areas of the Levantine Basin (Mediterranean Sea) and to study the complex circulation features governing the dynamics near the coast and in the open sea. It is proposed to use low-cost satellite-tracked drifters to measure currents in the near-surface mixed-layer as well as floats and gliders to measure subsurface currents and profiles of physical and biogeochemical parameters. The monitoring of the circulation and water mass properties in the northeastern Levantine (NEL), with main focus on the area between Cyprus, Lebanon and Syria, is planned for a full year in order to investigate seasonal variability. In this region, mesoscale and sub-basin scale eddies are predominant, and strongly interact with a persistent coastal current. The in-situ observations will be interpreted in concert with the distribution of tracers (sea surface temperature, chlorophyll), and altimetry data obtained from satellites. Numerical simulations with a high resolution model in which deep profiles of temperature and salinity from floats and gliders are assimilated will be used to fine tune the observational array and to interpret the local dynamics. The impact of the assimilation in forecasting mode will also be assessed.

May, 2017 to December, 2017