Physical Oceanography

The Physical Oceanography program is interested in receiving research planning letters on topics related to our primary focus areas of mesoscale and sub-mesoscale ocean processes, air-sea interaction, new ocean observing technologies and the education of the next generation of scientists.

Areas of interest include:

  • Sub-mesoscale variability associated with fronts, jets and eddies; internal tides, turbulence and mixing; influence of regional variability on meso- and sub-mesoscale processes, sea strait dynamics, and the predictability of these processes
  • Western boundary current forcing and variability on short time scales
  • The processes that govern ocean interior mixing and air-sea interaction, in particular those that govern, surface fluxes and turbulence
  • Novel uses of existing or emerging remote, autonomous or in-situ instruments to understand the ocean on the scales at which the Navy operates; use of such data to improve ocean state predictions

Research Concentration Areas

The Physical Oceanography program priorities are represented by the ongoing or upcoming Departmental Research Initiatives (DRIs). These topics form the core of the program focus and investment. Once a DRI has begun, it is rare to encourage additional proposals in those areas.

The program strongly encourages hypothesis based research and often uses the latest parameterizations and model formulations to help frame this hypothesis. We are also interested in advancing autonomous methods of ocean sampling.

The program fully embraces the Navy’s commitment to fostering science, technology, engineering and mathematics education, and will give highest priority to existing early student support commitments and will continue this as a focus of the core physical oceanography program. The Early Student Support Program directly supports student involvement in Physical Oceanography program-funded efforts. We select only a few ESS new starts each year.

Research Challenges and Opportunities

Regular Planning Letter Due Date: 15 October 2018

The purpose of our planning letter process is to allow you to submit a brief description of your scientific idea so that we may look at it and give you programmatic and technical feedback before you invest your time in writing a full proposal. This allows us to give you a quick indication of where we think a full proposal may end up based on our program interest/priority. If you are uncertain of the appropriate Ocean, Atmosphere and Space Research Division program for your planning letter submission, we encourage you to submit to all potentially applicable programs. The review process will consider the appropriate alignment for your proposed work.

Program Contact Information

Name: Dr. Scott Harper

Title: Program Officer

Department: Code 322

Email for Questions:

How to Submit

Submit white papers, QUAD charts and full proposals for contracts to this email address: ONR Code 32 Research Submissions

Follow instructions within BAA for submission of grant proposals to website.

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