At the end of last week the NOC in Liverpool invited the UK communities around sea level science to a meeting to honour Phil Woodworth’s retirement. After the 80th-birthday of the PSMSL two years ago, this was the second time in quick succession to get the people together and discuss the current developments in the field. Sea level itself is a highly diverse topic, which was well represented at that meeting.
It started with some talks on the impact of sea level change and storm surges. A focus therein was the translation of the science to the actions on the ground. After the first poster session the past sea-level, especially during the Holocene got their attention. In this part the connection between geodesy, geology and oceanography gives the field a very interesting interdisciplinary touch. All communities have to work together and understand each other to gain further ground in the research on this topic. A big point is therein the uncertainty of models and observations, which was widely presented and discussed in the talks and the posters.
My poster at the meeting
The presentations ended with an overview over the observational techniques, mainly coastal measurements with the satellites. In these fields large steps forward were made in the past years, which brings hope to the development of better opportunities to compare satellite measurements with the readings of tide gauges. Some remarks from the host and a nice conference dinner with many discussions lead to the end the first day.
The second day kicked of with the main source of sea level change, the ice. The focus was especially set on the ice sheets on Antarctica and their monitoring with satellite altimetry. Ocean dynamics and their influence on sea level followed next. The speakers showed that the influence of this part has still many potentials for future research. The final topic was the projections of future sea level change. This controversial topic with its two main approaches, the classical modeling and the semi-empirical methods, lead to many discussions.
All in all it was a great meeting, which brought a good overview on the many different facets of the field. The great discussions around the meeting helped to broaden the understanding for everyone within this interdisciplinary community. Certainly the field will still allow for huge advances in the future, which will require the introduction of new techniques, great ideas and especially the work across the traditional boarders of the research fields.
Today the highlight was to show my own work to the audience. So I presented some work on the sea-level oscillations during the LIG and the main result that the data I have is inconclusive on this topic. Yes, such results are not great and I always have hoped for a different outcome when I submitted my abstract, but science does not work like a wish list. Nevertheless, I personally think it is important to show the problems within the work and the possible ways to solve them, even when these solutions are not in your own control. I will work further on this and some similar questions and will hope to submit a paper on this in the next couple of months.
The second session was about atmospheric reanalysis data and their intercomparision. I very much liked it as it is well-connected to my former work and the developments there are always of interest. Seeing the developments and the new products in production make me hopeful that the next generation of atmospheric reanalysis will be even better. After lunch a very interesting poster session, attached to the session of my talk, occupied me for a long time. Many great poster, a lot of great science and definitely a field which is moving forward in large steps. And yes, it was also the session for the poster, which has my name as a co-author. And it was great to show that tiny differences can lead to large changes.
Apart from that, many meetings during and at the end of the day made the day a very good one. It was certainly the most productive one for receiving feedback and organising work for the next couple of months. After this highlights, the next two days will be again filled with interesting talks. So bring it on.
The end of the year has arrived and the last conference in it will be for me the AGU 2014 in San Francisco. My contributions are fucussed on one presentation on Wednesday morning at the Session “PP31F – Sea Level, Ice Sheets, and High-Latitude Climates during Previous Warm Periods I”. My talk will give some insight on the problematics around the determination of sea-level variability during the Last Interglacial.
The last day of the EGU 2014 is done and it was again a quite interesting one. It started with a session on data publication, which gave a good overview on the current technical side of developments within this community. Since I had written my PhD on this topic, it was definetely a must see session for me. Additionally, my poster was placed in this session, which was presented in the following slot. Therein, I had some very interesting discussions about the necessity and potential consequences of data peer review.
After the lunch I paid a short visit to a nice verification talk before I took a walk over to the sea-level session. Therein several interesting talks, especially those focussing on statistics, generated a nice ending of a week of talks. The poster session at the end offered again some interesting points of discussion and with it ended the conference.
All in all it was a great week in Vienna. Like I had hoped a lot of interesting discussions emerged, I have seen a lot of interesting talks and posters and learned a lot. I am happy with the responses to my contributions and the wonderful weather was a great add on before I travel back to the UK. This was a week with a lot of ups and just a few downs and so I hope I will have the chance to be back in Vienna soon.
Less then a week away until the European Geosciences Union General Assembly 2014, short EGU 2014, starts in Vienna. I will visit the conference with more than 10,000 visitors for the third time and it will be once again a great oportunity to see new things, people and ideas. Once again I will have the opportunity to contribute with two entries to the program and I would like to introduce them in the following with a short overview.
This talk will present a statistical approach to estimate the sea level history during the last interglacial. It bases on a massive ensemble approach, which are evaluated with bayesian statistics. The presentation will show some preliminary results and its uncertainties. Furthermore, it will be demonstrated how the shown uncertainties can be explained.
What have to be done to make data publications comparable to traditional publications? This is the question which this contribution tries to answer. We think one main factor will be an effective peer review scheme. A propable candidate will be described and illustrated with an application on data of a meteorological climate station.
So I am looking forward to an intersting week and hope for some nice discussions. When time and WiFi permit I will write on some impressions of the conference at this place. Until then: See you in Vienna!