Ocean Observing and Climate

AutoFlux on RRS Discovery

Contact: Dr Margaret Yelland

AutoFlux is a stand-alone, autonomous meteorological and air-sea flux system which operates continuously and communicates initial results and house-keeping information daily via the IRIDIUM satellite communications system. As well as mean meteorological data Autoflux obtains direct measurements of the air-sea fluxes of momentum, sensible heat, latent heat and CO2. As of November 2006, AutoFlux also now acquires and transmits mean sea state parameters from the Discovery's ship-borne wave recorder (SBWR).

Near real-time data obtained from AutoFlux on Discovery can be viewed here.

From 1998 to 2001 the development of AutoFlux was begun under the MAST-3 programme of the European Union (original project webpages). Further development was supported by two grants from the NOC Technology Innovation Fund (TIF). Under the second TIF project the system was deployed on the RRS Discovery in October of 2005 and has been in operation on the ship since then. From autumn 2006 to autumn 2007 the system is funded through the NERC SOLAS program to support a number of cruises for the "SEASAW" and "DOGEE" projects, the first of which began on the 7th November 2006 (a cruise diary is available at the DOGEE site under "news").

*** September 2007 *** AutoFlux has now been removed from Discovery since the SEASAW and DOGEE cruises have been completed.