The ocean as a mathematical object: an ERC grant awarded to the project "Stochastic Transport in Upper Ocean Dynamics" (STUOD)

STUOD, a project led by the Imperial College of London, INRIA and Ifremer has won a grant from the European Research Council (ERC) and is one of the 37 curiosity-driven research who will receive funding.

The ERC Synergy Grant is one of the research fundings from the Horizon 2020 program. Highly competitive, it helps teams of 2 to 4 European researchers to launch ambitious research programs at the frontiers of knowledge. Each project is allocated a budget of approximately €10 million for a period of 6 years. Scientific excellence is the sole selection criterion.

The ocean as a mathematical object to better understand the dynamics of its upper layers is the ambition of Darryl Holm and Dan Crisan (Imperial College of London), Etienne Mémin (Inria) and Bertrand Chapron (Ifremer).

The ocean, in exchange with the atmosphere, is the site of extremely complex interactions on a very wide range of spatial and temporal scales. Although often observable, there is currently no sufficient digital capacity model to analyze and understand them. This is the purpose of this ambitious exploratory project.

The STUOD project proposes to develop a new mathematical framework, informed by very high-resolution measurements, from satellite and in situ observations, to better understand the rapid variations in ocean dynamics in its short and long term evolution. "A cyclone, for example, does not only have a local and ephemeral impact," explains Bertrand Chapron "It has fine and sometimes significant consequences in the very long term. This is also the case for microalgae blooms or biogeochemical disturbances of surface waters. The question is to approach their true influence on trends in the ocean-atmosphere system. »

This rigorous mathematical framework will make it possible to analyze the evolution of the upper layers of the ocean and, ultimately, to better predict them through appropriate observations and numerical simulations.