SkinDeEP: A profiling instrument for upper-decameter sea surface measurements

Brian Ward, Rik Wanninkhof, Peter J. Minnett, Michael J. Head

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


The Skin Depth Experimental Profiler (SkinDeEP) is an autonomous, self-contained, hydrodynamic instrument capable of making repeated, high-resolution profiles of temperature and conductivity within the ocean's upper decameter. Autonomous profiling operation is accomplished through SkinDeEP's ability to change its density: positive buoyancy is achieved by pumping air from inside the body of the profiler into an external, neoprene, inflatable sleeve; the instrument sinks when the sleeve is deflated by returning the air to the interior. The sensors are mounted some distance from the top endcap and data are recorded only during the ascending phase of the profile so as to minimize disruption of a naturally occurring scalar structure by the presence of the instrument. Temperature and conductivity are measured with resolutions in the submillimeter and millimeter ranges, respectively. Highly accurate and slower sensors are installed for calibration purposes. These data are used to study exchange processes at the air-sea interface and the structure of the ocean just below.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-222
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ocean Engineering
  • Atmospheric Science


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