National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory

Physical Oceanography Division

Who we are

The Physical Oceanography Division (PhOD) is a part of the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) together with the Ocean Chemistry and Hurricane Research Divisions. The Physical Oceanography Division carries out interdisciplinary scientific investigations of the physics of ocean currents and water properties, and on the role of the ocean in climate, extreme weather events, and ecosystems. The tools used to carry out these studies range from sensors on deep ocean moorings to satellite-based instruments to measurements made on research and commercial shipping vessels and autonomous vehicles, and include data analysis and numerical modeling as well as theoretical approaches.

Major areas of research
  • Meso-to-large scale dynamics and variability of ocean currents;
  • The redistribution of heat, salt and momentum through the oceans;
  • The interactions between oceans, atmosphere, and coastal environments;
  • The influence of climate variability on the ocean ecosystems, hurricanes and tornadoes;


NOAA Adopt a Drifter Program

PhOD videos>>

Research Highlight

2014 PIRATA Northeast Extension (PNE) cruise

The 2014 PIRATA Northeast Extension (PNE) cruise was conducted on the UNOLS R/V Endeavor from
December 29, 2014 to February 11, 2015.  During this cruise, a number of tropical moorings were recovered and deployed and a suite of oceanographic data was collected in the climate-critical Tropical North Atlantic Go>>

Recent publications
  • A reassessment of the integrated impact of tropical cyclones on surface chlorophyll in the western subtropical North Atlantic. [pdf]
  • Idealized Study of Ocean Impacts on Tropical Cyclone Intensity Forecasts. [pdf]
  • Ocean acidification along the Gulf Coast and East Coast of the USA. [pdf]
  • Characteristics of the Near-Surface Currents in the Indian Ocean as Deduced from Satellite-Tracked Surface Drifters. Part II: Lagrangian Statistics. [pdf]
  • Evidence of climate-driven ecosystem reorganization in the Gulf of Mexico. [pdf]

Complete list of publications>>


2015 AOML Open House

2015 AOML Open House : Several PhOD personnel (R. Lumpkin, R. Perez, R. Smith, G. Goni, C. Meinen, R. Lusic, M. Goes, and U. Rivero) participated in the NOAA/AOML Open House on Thursday to Saturday (5/14 to 5/16). Go>>

Physical Oceanography Seminars

    Dr. Xiaobiao Xu - June 23 at 2pm - title: "Denmark Strait overflow water in western subpolar North Atlantic: Spreading and Modification".

    Dr. Jili Dong - Thursday, June 25 at 10am - title:" The impact of prescribed SST on Hurricane Edouard (2014) forecast with HWRF " https://global.gotomeeting. com/join/709493293

    Dr. Christopher Meinen - Tuesday, September 1 at 2pm -Title TBA

    Dr. Elizabeth "Libby" Johns -Thursday, September 3 at 2pm- Title TBA

All seminars are held at the AOML first floor conference room, unless otherwise stated.
A list of recent PhOD seminars can be found here.

Current Job Opportunities

  • Electrical Engineer - (CIMAS/UM, position #051018) [apply on-line]
  • Research Associate I - (CIMAS/UM, position #060867) [apply on-line]
  • Research Associate II - (CIMAS/UM, position #P100004414) [apply on-line]
  • Research Associate II - (CIMAS/UM, position #P100002838) [apply on-line]
  • Postdoctoral Associate - (CIMAS/UM, position #P100004476) [apply on-line]
  • Postdoctoral Associate - (CIMAS/UM, position #P100004415) [apply on-line]
  • Part-Time Opportunity for Student on Webpage Development - (CIMAS/UM) [more information]

For questions regarding these CIMAS positions, please contact Gustavo Goni at (305) 361-4339.