print page print page


Last publications on Ocean circulation and predictability

For a lay audience: Topic sheet on "Ocean Circulation in the North Atlantic: why it is important for Scotland", Marine of Scotland (subcontractor of SAMS), April 2013, download the file in PDF or visit the Marine of Scotland website

For the scientific community:


Project final report submitted to the EC

Today, 31 January 2013, we have completed the project final report and we have submitted it to the European Commission. Thank you to all core theme leaders and co-leaders for their efforts. We will publish soon a copy of the report on the website.

Publishable summary (v. 31 Jan.2013): download PDF

Draft version submitted to the EC (v.31 Jan. 2013): download PDF

THOR has formally finalised its activities on 30 November 2012, but the observational and modeling groups keep on working on THOR topics under other projects: EU FP7 NACLIM, SPECS, EUPORIAS


Article about THOR and NACLIM projects in Spektrum der Wissenschaft

Michael Gross, science writer, published an article on the findings in the THOR project and the expectations for the NACLIM project in a German science magazine, Spektrum der Wissenschaft


Is the thermohaline circulation really at risk? This short movie tells...

This is a short movie on the researches done in THOR and on the results achieved by our scientists, 4 years of work all condensed in 20 minutes.

The movie is available here on the website (below)

In Vimeo:

On Youtube:

Please note this is a low resolution version, which can be visualized on mobile devices. For a high resolution version, please get in contact with (@)

Is the thermohaline circulation really at risk? from THOR Project on Vimeo.


THOR invited at UN climate change conference COP18, Doha, Qatar, 29 Nov. 2012

The THOR project final results will be presented at COP18 as well:

29 November 15:50 – 16:20 presentation of Jean-Claude Gascard in the side event organized by the European Commission on Global and Regional Impacts of Polar Warming, EU Pavillion, Hall 3

The United Nations climate change conference in Doha must start the hard work of turning last year's agreement to enhance global climate action into reality. The European Union wants an outcome that takes forward all elements of the package of decisions agreed in Durban towards a new global climate agreement by 2015 (read more...)

Presentation on results of the THOR project: download PDF

Short summary for the press:download PDF

Summary by Luca Perez (EC) on the talks and discussions: download PDF



Lecturers of the Generation Green: Marit Sjøvaag Marino,Tobias Thorleifsson and Kikki Kleiven. Photo: Fredrik Naumann

[Fall 2012]

Green Generation: outreach lecture tour on climate

The THOR results of H. Kleiven, which spans the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice age historical climate events, have been used for an outreach lecture tour on climate (Kleiven, Marino and Thorleifson) called “Generation Green” initiated by the Norwegian Ministry of Environment. The focus group is natural science teachers in high schools and teaching colleges around Norway. The tour fall 2012 has given full day lectures in Bergen, Kristiansand, Oslo, Hamar, Tromsø and Trondheim.

Read more on Generation Green (in Norwegian):

Klimaløftet is a national governmental campaign for public awareness on climate change and how to act on CO2 ( reduce carbon emissions). The Campaign is organised as a partnership with stakeholders from the NGOs, climatescience- and research institutions, businesses and representative groups from civil society.It is run by the Norwegian Ministry of Environment.

The Little Ice Age results have also spurred media interest in Norway “In search for Eirik the Red’s bath water temperatures” (in Norwegian)



...but what did we actually find out in 4 years of researches?

The final conference of the THOR project was held at the end of September.  Interviews and videos recorded at the end of September summarize the main results of the THOR project.

Elements of the Bergen System for SOOS


THOR observational tools for the Weddel Sea: Workshop "Seeing Below the Ice Workshop", Hobart, Australia 22-25 October 2012


Our THOR CT5 instrument systems will be used in Antarctica. Svein Oesterhus (UiB) has taken part in the CLIVAR/Southern Ocean Observing System (SOOS) to talk about how  the system works and how to design a good observing system for the Weddell Sea. For more details:


The aim was to design an observing system for observations system for process studies and long-term observations. Svein presented our THOR systems: the Bergen and the Kiel systems should be suitable for many of the planned observatories. UiB will deploy two THOR Bergen systems in the Southern Weddell Sea during the Polarstern cruise to in 2013/14.

Svein's full presentation can be downloaded here (PPT).




Workshop for the end-users: 24 October 2012, London

Topic: Decadal predictions and the RAPID-WATCH

Outcome of the workshop: The response of the end-users was very positive. End-users listened with interest to our talks, many questions were asked in a very dynamic exchange of views.

Workshop proceedings: More information on the meeting and the talks can be found in this part of the website





24- 26 September: three days full of events!

We will organise three events at the same time during these days:

1) Auftaktveranstaltung Stand der deutschen Meeresforschung

2) The joint conference of the THOR and North Atlantic Projects on the North Atlantic Climate Variability: 24 September lunchtime to 26 September lunchtime 

3) A specific THOR project meeting with the Steering Scientific Committee (SSEC)



Revised list of peer-reviewed articles: online

The updated list of THOR publications and abstracts is now online. Status of 17 July 2012.  Download the document in Word format.

The articles in their full version can be downloaded in the Members' only area.


AGU Fall meeting: call for abstracts for climate services session

AGU fall meeting in San Francisco in December. The session will look at recent developments in both the science of climate services and the associated underpinning climate science. The focus will mainly be on the seasonal to decadal time scale.

Abstract submission: by 8 August 2012.

You can find more information here


EC consults on climate adaptation strategy 

The European Commission's climate department has launched a consultation in preparation for the development of a comprehensive strategy on adaptation to climate change, which is due next year. The consultation closes on 20 August.

It follows a 2009 white paper an adaptation. Most of the measures announced in this paper have now been implemented or are about to be, according to the climate department. An information tool for policymakers was also launched in March.

Among other things, the consultation seeks views on the key risks of climate change, identifying which population groups are most vulnerable to temperature rises, extreme weather and other hazards. The department also wants to know which sectors EU action would be the most effective in to improve Europe's resilience to climate change.

Follow Up: DG Climate consultation


Register to attend the final conference

The final conference of THOR will take place in Hamburg on 24-26 September 2012.

You can register as attendee here:

IPY 2012



International Polar Year conference 'From Knowledge to Action', Montreal, 22-27 April 2012: the THOR project was there!

Flyers about the project were available at the booth of the European Commission. THOR scientists presented papers and posters in different sessions. Here is the complete set of presentations and posters.

Happy reading!

  • Svein Oesterhus (UiB-Norway): Long termn variations of the ice shelf water in the Southern Weddell sea (abstract and presentation)
  • Bogi Hansen (HAV- Faroe Islands): The Faroe Bank Channel Overflow has Remained Stable for the Last 15 years (abstract and presentation)
  • Steingrimur Jonsson (MRI- Iceland):

Variability and Forcing of the Flow Of Water Masses on the North Icelandic Shelf (abstract and presentation)
Is the Oceanic Heat Transport with Atlantic Water towards the Arctic Changing? (abstract and presentation)

  • Bert Rudels (FMI- Finland): The Influence of the Barents Sea Inflow Branch on the Arctic Ocean Circulation and Water Mass Transformation Processes (abstract and presentation)
  • Christophe Herbaut, Marie-Noelle Houssais and Dorotea Iovino (UPMC-LOCEAN - France): Variability of the Arctic Fresh Water Reservoir and Its Link to the Atmosphere (poster)
  • Dorothea Iovino (UPMC-LOCEAN- France): Impact of the Nordic Seas mesoscale dynamics on the exchanges over the Greenland Scotland Ridge to the Atlantic MOC (poster)


Day 2-Gerard, Kerstin, Nuno, Jürgen, Karin, Steingrimur
Day 3-Svein, Toby, Gerard, Nuno


CT3 meeting on the island of Texel 7-9 May 2012

The meeting saw the contributions of UiB/UniRES, GEOMAR, HAV, MRI, NIOZ, UHAM and NERC. The scientific presentations are available in the Members' only area (CT3 Meetings) on the following topics: "Variability and forcing of the flow of water masses on the north Icelandic shelf", "Is the oceanic heat transport towards the Arctic changing?", "The Faroe Bank Channel overflow has remained stable for the last 15 years", "Variations of the Denmark strait overflow", "Intra-seasonal variability of the DWBC in the western subpolar North Atlantic", "The thermohaline variability of overflow waters in the northern North Atlantic Ocean", "Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation and Heat Flux Monitoring Array at 26.5°N", "Has the strength of the circulation of the North Atlantic Ocean changed in the last 50 years?", "The overflow in the western channel of the Iceland-Faroe Ridge"


The final deliverables of this core theme are expected on time (project month 48= November 2012), with some more integrations for the D26 "Data set and entrainment estimates from DS experiments" which was already submitted to COMM in the last reporting period. Deliverables for project month 48 are D36, D37 and D38 (see the table of deliverables). These will be delivered in time. Deadline for submitting the reports to the project office is (indicatively) 30 August 2012. Templates are already available in the Members' only area.




6th GEO European Projects’ Workshop (GEPW-6), Rome, 7-8 May 2012

The objective of the event was to bring all those interested in and actively contributing to the GEOSS from all over Europe to present their work and actively discuss how Europe can contribute to GEO.  THOR was invited to provide its contribution. 

A copy of the presentation delivered by Laurent Mortier of UPMC is available for download here.

Final agenda of the event:


Interested in understanding what THOR is about?

Check out these videos, take 30 minutes of your time, sit back, relax and enjoy the show...



Calls for proposals Theme 6 "Environment, incl. climate change"

The timeplan for the Work Programme 2013 is very tight. A first draft of the Work Programme has been circulating already in March 2012, a second and final draft should be ready by now. The last calls of the FP7 are foreseen to open this summer, in July, probably in the first half of the month. These last calls of the FP7 will follow the 2-stage approach. Though the Work Programme is for the year 2013, the calls under this Work programme will be launched in 2012. Some info-days are being organised at national level by the national contact points (Ref: German National Contact Point newsletter NKS Umwelt 22.3.2012)

The Commission has organized an info-day for this call on 11  June 2012 in Brussels.



THOR website restyled

We have recently re-styled the THOR website, and in particular the Members' only area: new pages have been prepared to archive materials, articles, publications according to the core theme, and to collect project documentation and publications as an archive. Additionally, the templates for the WP reports and the deliverable reports of the 3rd and final period are published online in this section (Toolkit). Have a look... For accessing this area, a login is required.


Consultive workshop Seas-era EUFP7 ERA-NET

Detlef Quadfasel took part in the consultive workshop on the document “A draft Marine Research Plan for the European Atlantic Sea Basin”, organised by Seas-Era in Ostend (BE) on 28-29 February 2012. His presentation and abstract are available in the Members' only area

Link to the project Seas- Era



Seminar at MPI-M, Hamburg 27 March 2012

Title: North Atlantic climate and ocean circulation variability during the last millennium in paleo reconstructions and simulations

Authors: Johann Jungclaus (MPI-M), Katja Lohmann (MPI-M), Ulysses Ninnemann (UiB), Kikki Kleiven (UiB), Juliette Mignot (UPMC-LOCEAN) and Odd Helge Otterå(UiB)

Abstract and full presentation can be downloaded in the Members' only area




CT2 Workshop, Paris, 30-31 May 2012

Topic: Hosing experiments intercomparison project- Results of the new simulations

Venue: LOCEAN/IPSL, 4th floor of the tower 45-55, door 417, 4 Place Jussieu, 75005, Paris, France

Organisation: Didier Swingedouw IPSL/UPMC and project office, Chiara Bearzotti

Partners participating: MPI-M, UiB, UPMC, DMI, GEOMAR, NERC, MET O, UHAM

Agenda: download

typo3 by akea
Open Source Web Design - original design by tri-star web design