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Home > Summer School > Summer School 2022 > CONSERVATION AND NATURE > SA’s oceanographic research programme

LIFE IN THE WASHING MACHINE: SOUTH AFRICA’S OCEANOGRAPHIC RESEARCH PROGRAMME IN THE SOUTHERN OCEAN

Professor Isabelle Ansorge, Head of Oceanography Department, UCT; Dr Sarah Fawcett, senior lecturer, Oceanography Department, UCT; Tahlia Henry, SEAmester programme manager

South Africa has a strong geographic advantage for conducting and directing research in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean. Logistically, it is the closest African point to the South Pole and is a well-established gateway to Antarctica – acting as a summer springboard for many international expeditions. The distance from South Africa to Antarctica is the greatest of all the southern continents, allowing for a unique configuration of ocean circulation. A transect between Cape Town and Antarctica crosses one of the world’s most oceanographically and biologically dynamic regions, encompassing three ocean basins, two major boundary currents and the circumpolar current. In this lecture series Professor Isabelle Ansorge will look at the Southern Ocean’s global importance south of Africa, while Dr Sarah Fawcett will concentrate on the role this region plays in marine productivity and global climate. The third lecture by Tahlia Henry will give an account of what life is like working onboard South Africa’s polar research vessel, the SA Agulhas II, in one of the world’s most hostile oceans.

 

Lecture titles

1.  Life in the washing machine: what makes the Southern Ocean so interesting?

2.  Life and soul: the role of the Southern Ocean in global ocean productivity and Earth’s climate

3.  Tales from the deep south: life onboard South Africa’s polar research vessel, the SA Agulhas II

 

Recommended reading

Ansorge, I.J., Skelton, P., Bekker, A., De Bruyn, N., P.J., Butterworth, D., Cilliers, P., Cooper, J., Cowan, D.A., Dorrington, R., Fawcett, S., Fietz, S., Findlay, K.P., Froneman, P.W., Grantham, G.H., Greve, M., Hedding, D., Hofmeyr, G.J., Kosch, M., Le Roux, P.C., Lucas, M., MacHutchon, K., Meiklejohn, I., Nel, W., Pistorius, P., Ryan, P.G., Stander, J., Swart, S., Treasure, A., Vichi, M., Van Vuuren, B.J. 2017. Exploring South Africa’s southern frontier: A 20-year vision for polar research through the South African National Antarctic Programme. South African Journal of Science, 113 (5–6).

Sigman, D.M. and Hain, M.P. 2012. The Biological Productivity of the Ocean. Nature Education, 3 (1–16).

 

ONLINE: https://www.webtickets.co.za/v2/performance.aspx?itemid=1509152434

IN-PERSON: https://www.webtickets.co.za/v2/performance.aspx?itemid=1509153780

 

DATE: Monday 10–Wednesday 12 January
TIME: 5.00 pm
COURSE FEES: R225 (online)/R330 (in person)
PLATFORM: MS TEAMS