The Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory
(AOML), a federal research laboratory, is part of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration , pronounced , like "noah", is a scientific agency within the United States Department of Commerce focused on the conditions of the oceans and the atmosphere...
's (NOAA) Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research
The Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research is a division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration . OAR is also referred to as NOAA Research....
(OAR), located in Miami, Florida. AOML's research spans tropical cyclone and hurricanes, coastal ecosystems, oceans and human health, climate studies, global carbon systems, and ocean observations.
AOML’s organizational structure consists of an Office of the Director and three scientific research divisions. The Office of the Director oversees the Laboratory’s scientific programs, as well as its financial, administrative, computer, outreach/education, and facility management services. Research programs are augmented by the Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies
The Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies is a research institute of the University of Miami located in the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science...
(CIMAS), a joint enterprise with the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. CIMAS enables AOML and university scientists to collaborate on research areas of mutual interest and facilitates the participation of students and visiting scientists.
The Laboratory is a member of a unique community of marine research and educational institutions located on Virginia Key
Virginia Key is a barrier island in Miami, Florida, United States in Biscayne Bay, south of Brickell and north of Key Biscayne. It accessible from the mainland via the Rickenbacker Causeway....
in Miami, Florida. Approximately $150M per year is invested in marine science and education among the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science
The Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science is a college and research institute for the study of oceanography and the atmospheric sciences within the University of Miami . It is located on a 16 acre campus on Virginia Key in Miami, Florida, USA...
, NOAA's Southeast Fisheries Science Center, the Miami Seaquarium
The Miami Seaquarium is a oceanarium located on the island of Virginia Key in Biscayne Bay, Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States and is located near downtown Miami. It is the longest operating oceanarium in the United States. In addition to the marine mammals, the Miami Seaquarium also...
, the Maritime and Science Technology Academy (MAST Academy).
AOML conducts mission oriented scientific research that seeks to understand the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics and processes of the ocean and atmosphere, both separately and as a coupled system. The Laboratory’s research themes (oceans and climate, coastal ecosystems, and hurricanes and tropical meteorology) employ a cross-disciplinary approach, conducted through collaborative interactions with national and international research and environmental forecasting institutions. More information about AOML's research can be found at http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/research
Oceans and Climate
AOML conducts ocean and climate studies to better understand the large-scale setting for regional climate signals. The research particularly emphasizes interannual and longer time scales of variability.
AOML manages global ocean observing systems and, with these and other data, conducts research in several areas including studies of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomena, North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), tropical Atlantic variability, the Meridional Overturning Cell, wind-driven gyres in the Atlantic, the global carbon cycle, and other climatically-relevant atmospheric compounds. Embedded within these studies are activities directed at the circulation of the tropical Atlantic, western boundary currents including the Gulf Stream and Deep Western Boundary Current, and the oceanography of the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and coastal Florida.
Coastal and regional ecosystem research has been a focus of AOML activities for more than two decades. Current interdisciplinary field efforts include physical, biological, and chemical studies supporting the South Florida Ecosystem Restoration (SFER) effort and the underlying health of this ecosystem to the regional Intra-Americas Sea program, as well as the status and health of coral reef ecosystems worldwide.
Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology
Tropical meteorology research at AOML is focused on advancing the understanding and prediction of hurricanes and other tropical weather. Scientists conduct their research utilizing a combination of models, theories, and observations, with particular emphasis on data obtained with research aircraft in the inner core of tropical cyclones and their surrounding environment.