European Directory of Marine Environmental Data (EDMED)

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Data set name

Rapid Climate Change Programme - oceanographic data set

Data holding centreBritish Oceanographic Data Centre
CountryUnited Kingdom  United Kingdom
ProjectRapid Climate Change
Time periodRAPID from 2004 to 2008; RAPID-WATCH 2008 onwards
Geographical area

Multiple sites covering North Atlantic and North Sea


Dissolved oxygen parameters in the water column; Chlorofluorocarbon concentrations in the water column; Concentration of inorganic halogens in the atmosphere; Vertical velocity of the water column (currents); Dissolved trace metalloid concentrations in the water column; Particulate trace metalloid concentrations in the water column; Sediment grain size parameters; Nitrate concentration parameters in the water column; Nitrite concentration parameters in the water column; Phosphate concentration parameters in the water column; Salinity of the water column; Plankton abundance per unit volume of the water column; Horizontal velocity of the water column (currents); Inorganic chemical composition of sediment or rocks; Silicate concentration parameters in the water column; Stable isotope enrichment in sediment; Temperature of the water column; Sediment water content, porosity and surface area; Stable isotope enrichment in the water column; Zooplankton biovolume; Sea level; Plankton biomass expressed as carbon per unit volume of the water column; Geological sample density


Sea level recorders; current meters; current profilers; CTD; acoustic backscatter sensors; plankton nets; discrete water samplers; continuous water samplers; particulates samplers; unconsolidated sediment corers; rock corers


The Rapid Climate Change (RAPID) data set comprises a diverse collection of oceanographic and benthic observations, including profiles of temperature, salinity, dissolved gases and currents. The dataset also includes discrete measurements of plankton, stable isotopes, dissolved metals, chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and nutrients in the water column, sediment grain size parameters and geochemistry, and atmospheric concentrations of inorganic halogens. The RAPID data were collected from numerous locations in the North Atlantic, North Sea, Greenland and Europe via over 30 cruises between 2004 and 2008. Many of the oceanographic data resulted from an extensive mooring array in the North Atlantic devoted to monitoring the Atlantic overturning circulation. These mooring arrays are continuing to return data in the follow-on (ongoing since 2008) programme, Rapid Climate Change - Will the Atlantic Thermohaline Circulation Halt? (RAPID-WATCH), which will result in a decade long time series spanning the North Atlantic. RAPID and RAPID-WATCH aim to investigate and understand the causes of rapid climate change, with a primary (but not exclusive) focus on the role of the Atlantic Ocean thermohaline circulation. A Rapid Climate Change project office has been established at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton. The cruise and mooring data are managed by the British Oceanographic Data Centre and are supplemented by atmospheric model output held at the British Atmospheric Data Centre (BADC).

OriginatorsNational Oceanography Centre, Southampton

Val Byfield (2008) Programme web site:, Val Byfield

Data web site
OrganisationBritish Oceanographic Data Centre
AvailabilityLicence; organisation
ContactPolly Hadžiabdić (Head of the BODC Requests Team)

British Oceanographic Data Centre
Joseph Proudman Building 6 Brownlow Street
L3 5DA
United Kingdom

Telephone+44 (0) 151 795 4884
Collating centreBritish Oceanographic Data Centre
Local identifier1048105
Global identifier230
Last revised2010-11-22