The Ocean Reference Station at 20°S, 85°W under the stratus clouds west of northern Chile is
being maintained to provide ongoing climate-quality records of surface meteorology, air-sea
fluxes of heat, freshwater, and momentum, and of upper ocean temperature, salinity, and velocity
variability. The Stratus Ocean Reference Station (ORS Stratus) is supported by the National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Observation Program. It is
recovered and redeployed annually, with past cruises that have come between October and
January. This cruise was conducted on the NOAA vessel Ron Brown.
During the 2014 cruise on the Ron Brown to the ORS Stratus site, the primary activities were the
recovery of the previous (Stratus 12) WHOI surface mooring, which was adrift since January 25
2014 and drifting northwest, deployment of the new Stratus 13 WHOI surface mooring, in-situ
calibration of the buoy meteorological sensors by comparison with instrumentation installed on
the ship, CTD casts near the moorings. Surface drifters and subsurface floats were also launched
along the track.