Fields of Research and Research Focus

SMHIs oceanographic department carries out research on the oceans role in nearly all aspects of human’s life. Our main focus is set on the Baltic Sea and North Sea which together form one of the most complex and vulnerable oceanographic regions in the world.

The ocean department encompasses basic research as well as applied science with direct societal relevance.  The outcome of our research enables SMHI to provide services directly to the public. The forecast of sea ice extension, of sea level high stands along the Swedish coast, as well as the potential for harmful algae and oxygen depletion in the deep Baltic Sea are examples of services that have been provided.

Another priority is to investigate the impact of anthropogenic influences in the Baltic Sea and North Sea region. The expected global warming, the threat of ongoing eutrophication as well as the intensive economic exploitation make this region highly vulnerable to climatic changes.

Being a global phenomenon with a large stochastic component, changes far remote from the region of interest can have large impact on local climate.  Our focus is therefore not only on Europe. We also carry out research in the Arctic, the Black Sea, the Siberian shelves, and on global climate.

We follow a comprehensive approach that combines the use of numerical models and direct oceanographic measurements. Our model hierarchy encompasses models of differing complexity for the physical and ecosystem conditions from near the coast up to the open ocean. There is a continuously model development of the models and provided model and observational data sets are frequently used by a broad interdisciplinary and international the scientific community.