News Releases

Steve Cole
Headquarters, Washington     
Aug. 29, 2012
NASA, WHOI to Hold Media Briefing on Ocean Salinity Expedition
WASHINGTON -- NASA-funded researchers are making final preparations at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in Woods Hole, Mass., for an ocean-going campaign designed to shed new light on the link between ocean salinity and shifts in global precipitation patterns.

Reporters are invited to attend a media briefing on the expedition at 10 a.m. EDT, Wednesday, Sept. 5, at WHOI. Media also can participate via telephone.

NASA's field campaign, named the Salinity Processes in the Upper Ocean Region Study (SPURS), will take the research vessel Knorr to a high-salinity region in the North Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Portugal. The six-week voyage will deploy numerous instruments, many of which will make autonomous measurements over the course of a year to create a three-dimensional picture of salinity beneath the ocean surface.

The panelists on the briefing are:

-- Raymond Schmitt, senior scientist, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
-- Eric Lindstrom, physical oceanography program scientist, NASA Headquarters, Washington
-- Dave Fratantoni, associate scientist, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Reporters who attend the briefing will meet SPURS researchers, tour the Knorr and see the variety of instruments and vehicles that will be deployed at sea. The instruments will collect data to complement observations from NASA's salinity-sensing instrument aboard the Aquarius/SAC-D (Satelite de Aplicaciones Cientificas) observatory launched in June 2011.

To participate in the media briefing in person or via telephone, reporters must contact Steve Cole at or 202-358-0918; or Stephanie Murphy at or 508-289-2271.

For information on SPURS, visit:


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