MERCATOR OCEAN

Welcome to the organization page of Mercator Ocean at Impactpool!

Mercator Ocean, the French centre for analysis and forecasting of the global ocean is a non-profit company located near Toulouse financed by five major public organisations engaged in operational-oceanography: The CNRS (French National Scientific Centre for Scientific Research), IFREMER (French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea), IRD (French Research and Development Institute), Météo-France and SHOM (the French Navy’s Hydrography and Oceanography Service).

Mercator Ocean describes analyses and forecasts Ocean conditions at the surface or at depth, on a global scale or for a specific zone, in real-time or delayed mode. Operational oceanography is an innovative technique which has only been available for the last twenty years. The numerical models and systems developed by Mercator Ocean are able to describe the physical state of the ocean at any given time for the following parameters: temperature, salinity, sea surface height, ice thickness and currents. Mercator Ocean delivers a unique portfolio of oceanography products weekly (high resolution forecasts, real time analysis and long-time-series data of the global ocean, bulletins and maps) and provides expertise all over the world. Including research and development, operations, forecasting expertise and related user services, Mercator Ocean covers the whole added-value chain of an extremely sophisticated operational oceanography centre thanks to its complex ocean simulation systems.

The 'Mercator' system produces operational Ocean information to meet the needs of national, European community and international stakeholders dealing with environmental policy, maritime safety, and defence, the stewardship of Marine resources, climate studies and sustainable development. It offers the scientific community a sophisticated tool and backup services for research in oceanography, biochemistry or climate studies while contributing to the development of commercial applications for oceanography and related sectors.

Mercator Ocean has always worked in partnership, pooling resources and developing cooperative projects. The company is driven by the pursuit of excellence and the public interest. This strategy reflects its founding values and one of its major strengths, partly explaining its successful development these past 15 years, out of which the EU-funded MyOcean projects, foreshadowing the Copernicus Marine Service. The European Commission and Mercator Ocean have signed an Agreement on November 11th 2014 to implement and manage the Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service.  COPERNICUS is the EU Earth Observation and Monitoring Programme. It aims to achieve an autonomous and operational Earth observation capacity (space and in-situ observation infrastructure) and to operate six different services: marine, atmosphere, land and climate change monitoring, together with support for emergency and security services.

Entrusted to Mercator Ocean, the EU Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service has been opened in April 2015. It provides a full open and free access to regular and systematic reference information on the physical state and on marine ecosystems for the global ocean and the European regional seas (temperature, currents, salinity, sea surface height, sea ice, marine optics, nutrients, etc.). This capacity encompasses satellite and in-situ observation-derived products, the description of the current situation (analysis), the prediction of the situation a few days ahead (forecast), and the provision of consistent retrospective data records for recent years (re-analysis). To achieve this goal, Copernicus Production and Service Elements, that cannot been undertaken by Mercator Ocean on its own are undertaken through comprehensive, open and transparent networking, by entrusting the development of services to expert partners from all backgrounds: the private sector, research institutions or public service operators. Mercator Ocean therefore issues a range of calls for tender to create the necessary strong network of partners.

The Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service is designed to serve many public, commercial and scientific purposes including major EU policies such as the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, combating pollution, protection of marine species, maritime safety and routing, sustainable exploitation of ocean resources, marine energy resources, climate monitoring and hurricane forecasting.

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