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June 14, 2016

CUHK ISEIS Holds International Workshop on South China Sea Coastal and Ocean Meso-scale Processes

The Institute of Space and Earth Information Science (ISEIS) of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) recently held the International Workshop on South China Sea Coastal and Ocean Meso-scale Processes at the Fok Ying Tung Remote Sensing Science Building on campus. Ocean meso-scale processes are dynamic phenomena with spatial scales from tens to several hundreds of kilometres and temporal scales of several weeks. A typical ocean meso-scale phenomenon is meso-scale eddy, an ocean current vortex with a diameter of tens to hundreds of kilometres. Ocean meso-scale eddies are important dynamic phenomena in the South China Sea, and their existence greatly affects ocean current structures, temperature and density fields. The investigation of the ocean meso-scale process is an important aspect in oceanographic studies of the South China Sea.

The opening ceremony was hosted by Prof. Pan Jiayi of ISEIS, and a welcome speech was delivered by Prof. Lin Hui, director of ISEIS. In his speech, Professor Lin said, ‘The South China Sea is an important pathway connecting the Pacific Ocean and the Indian Ocean, with abundant resources. Therefore, the studies in the South China Sea and coastal waters are important to the strategic development of China.’

In the opening ceremony, Dr. Quanan Zheng, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Science, University of Maryland, delivered a keynote speech on ‘Recent progress of studies on meso-scale processes in the South China Sea’. He summarized the recent progress in these studies, including studies in penetration of western Pacific Rossby waves into the South China Sea, generation mechanism of meso-scale eddies in the South China Sea and propagation patterns of the Luzon Strait internal waves.

A number of scholars from the University of Maryland, Xiamen University, the Research Institute of Tsinghua University in Shenzhen, the First Institute of Oceanography of the State Oceanic Administration, the South China Sea Institute of Oceanology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangdong Ocean University, the National Taiwan Ocean University, the National Taiwan Normal University and CUHK participated in the workshop. They gave around 30 presentations to share their research findings in the Pearl River estuarine dynamics, evolution of the meso-scale eddies in the Luzon Strait, effects of the Rossby waves in the western Pacific on the South China Sea and internal waves in the South China Sea. In the workshop, the participants witnessed important research progress in the South China Sea coastal and the meso-scale processes and also expressed their interest in data sharing and research collaborations.

Coastal and meso-scale ocean study of ISEIS

Coastal and meso-scale ocean study is one of the important research fields of ISEIS. Hong Kong is a typical coastal area. The environment of the near-shore water has significant impacts on Hong Kong’s social and economic development. The salinity and temperature structures, waves, and currents may directly affect near-shore aquaculture, marine environment protection, coastal ocean engineering, marine navigation, coastal disaster protection and coastal tourism. Supported by the Hong Kong Innovative and Technology Fund (ITF) and the Research Grant Council (RGC), Prof. Pan Jiayi and his research team have successfully developed the prediction systems for the tidal current, wave, and the storm surge inundation for the Hong Kong coastal areas. The systems can give 72-hour forecasts for the Hong Kong coastal tides, waves and storm surges.

The participants of the International Workshop on South China Sea Coastal and Ocean Meso-scale Processes pose for a group photo.

Prof. Lin Hui, Director of the Institute of Space and Earth Information Science, CUHK delivers a welcome speech.


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