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SPURS-2 Towed surface salinity profile (SSP) data for the E. Tropical Pacific R/V Revelle cruises

The SPURS (Salinity Processes in the Upper Ocean Regional Study) project is a NASA-funded oceanographic process study and associated field program that aim to elucidate key mechanisms responsible for near-surface salinity variations in the oceans. The project is comprised of two field campaigns and a series of cruises in regions of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans exhibiting salinity extremes. SPURS employs a suite of state-of-the-art in-situ sampling technologies that, combined with remotely sensed salinity fields from the Aquarius/SAC-D, SMAP and SMOS satellites, provide a detailed characterization of salinity structure over a continuum of spatio-temporal scales. The SPURS-2 campaign involved two month-long cruises by the R/V Revelle in August 2016 and October 2017 combined with complementary sampling on a more continuous basis over this period by the schooner Lady Amber. Focused around a central mooring located near 10N,125W, the objective of SPURS-2 was to study the dynamics of the rainfall-dominated surface ocean at the western edge of the eastern Pacific fresh pool subject to high seasonal variability and strong zonal flows associated with the North Equatorial Current and Countercurrent. The towed Surface Salinity Profiler (SSP) platform is a converted paddleboard with a keel and surfboard outrigger that is tethered to the ship and skims the sea surface beyond the ships wake. Below the paddleboard are salinity and temperature sensors at depths of 10, 30, 50 and 100cm, and microstructure sensors that measure turbulence. The SSP was deployed 19 times throughout the first SPURS-2 cruise, totaling over 200 hours of measurements, and a further 15 times during the 2017 cruise. SSP deployment is most informative when there is a rain event leading to near-surface ocean stratification. The SSP then measures how the ocean changes over the periods before, during, and after rain, and how rainwater mixes into the ocean during recovery. All SSP data files are in netCDF format with standards compliant metadata.

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