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Ocean Surface Topography from Space
SCIENCE
Science Objectives

Approaching 20 years of scientific discovery by NASA’s ocean altimetry satellites has broadened the depth of science objectives for the missions. OSTM/Jason-2 and its successor missions are now expected to:Measure global sea-height change and provide a continuous view of changing global ocean surface topography

  • Calculate the transport of heat, water mass, nutrients, and salt by the oceans
  • Increase understanding of ocean circulation and seasonal changes and how the general ocean circulation changes through time
  • Provide estimates of significant wave height and wind speeds over the ocean
  • Test how we compute ocean circulation caused by blowing winds
  • Improve the knowledge of ocean tides and develop open- ocean tide models
  • Improve forecasting of climatic events like El Niño and of global climate in general
  • Describe the nature of ocean dynamics and develop a global view of Earth's oceans
  • Monitor the variation of global mean sea level and its relation to global climate change

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