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Ocean Surface Topography from Space
SCIENCE
El Niño/La Niña & PDO

The data from the TOPEX/Poseidon and Jason missions helps us study and understand the complex interactions between the oceans and the atmosphere that affect global weather and climate events. El Niño is one well-known example of this interaction.

Learn more about this and other important climate phenomena in the links below.

 
A slice of the Pacific Ocean should the US and South America during and El Nino condition. Latest El Niño/La Niña Watch Data

These are the latest images from the Jason satellite with a focus on El Niño/La Niña.
Historical El Niño/La Niña Watch

Here you will find images and news releases.
Learn More About it

Read about this phenomenon that affects us all.
PDO - Pacific Decadal Oscillation

Find out more about this long-term ocean fluctuation.
El Niño/La Niña Movies

Watch Sea Surface Height (SSH) animtions of TOPEX/Poseidon and Jason data.
Educational and other links

Want to learn more? Follow these links for more details.

"El Niño" refers to a climate event in the Pacific Ocean where the trade winds weaken and warm, nutrient-poor ocean water builds up in the eastern Pacific Ocean, disrupting fisheries and resulting in severe weather events worldwide.

"La Niña" events are defined by stronger trade winds, and cold, nutrient-rich water occupying much of the tropical Pacific Ocean. Most of the precipitation during these events occurs in the western tropical Pacific Ocean, so rain is abundant over Southeast Asia. Cold La Niñas tend to follow El Niños in the ocean/climate seasonal cycles.

The Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) is a long-term ocean fluctuation of the Pacific Ocean, similar to the El Niño/La Niña cycles but on a much larger scale. The PDO waxes and wanes approximately every 20 to 30 years.


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