Argo is a global array of 3,000 free-drifting profiling floats that will measure the temperature and salinity of the upper 2000 m of the ocean. This will allow continuous monitoring of the climate state of the ocean, with all data being relayed and made publicly available within hours after collection.
Conceptually, Argo builds on the existing upper-ocean thermal networks, extending their spatial and temporal coverage, depth range and accuracy, and enhancing them through addition of salinity and velocity measurements.
The name Argo is chosen to emphasize the strong complementary relationship of the global float array with the Jason altimeter mission. For the first time, the physical state of the upper ocean will be systematically measured and assimilated in near real-time.