Peter HAYNES Attractivity Chair,
Toulouse IDEX program “Attractivity Chairs 2014”
The general context of the TEASAO project is the preparation of the next generation of prediction and climate systems for both the atmosphere and the ocean.
A major scientific challenge to do so is to improve understanding and modelling of the effect of small-scale turbulence and vertical mixing on the evolution of chemical or biological species in both the ocean and the atmosphere and its integrated effect at larger scales. This has strong relevance for societal problems such as fresh water resources, air or water quality, pollution development and spreading, oceanic deoxygenation, primary ocean production (plankton) and marine resources (fisheries).
Many of the outstanding scientific questions in this area are common to both ocean and atmosphere and the rationale for the TEASAO project is that there is much to be gained by the atmosphere and ocean scientific communities in Toulouse from exploiting this commonality. The project is based on the long-term visit of Professor Peter Haynes, from University of Cambridge (UK), who is an international expert on the dynamics of atmosphere and ocean and on the transport and mixing of trace species, including reacting chemical and biological species. The project is built with an original combination of theoretical to applied studies. One scientific goal of the TEASAO project is thus to build a common framework to address the theoretical aspects of the evolution of active tracers in turbulent stratified flows, in particular the evolution of their distribution along density classes. In situ and satellite observations will be used for more realistic applications for the ocean (plankton growth in Eastern Boundary upwelling systems) and for the atmosphere (the interaction between turbulence, mixing and microphysics on different scales in the tropical tropopause layer).
The TEASAO project will also benefit the local higher education programs and the development of experimental facilities has been planned in this perspective.