Kate Begland ’17



Project Title

Mixed-Layer Response to Changing Climate and Impact on Carbon Uptake in the Southern Ocean

Presentation Link

View Kate's Presentation

The goal of my summer project was to look at the effect of climate change on the depth of the mixed layer (the surface layer of the ocean which is well mixed due to winds), and to look at how this change could affect the amount of carbon that the ocean would take up. The broader aim of this research was to continue trying to understand the consequences of anthropogenic climate change. To do this, I analyzed temperature and salinity data collected in the Southern Ocean and extracted from climate models, using the program MATLAB. I chose a method to calculate the mixed layer depth, compared the mixed layer depths calculated from observational and model data, looked at the differences between mixed layer depths in control and climate-forced versions of the model, and looked at the differences in the circulation of carbon between the two versions of the model. I learned how to program using MATLAB and also learned to use various data analysis techniques to present my results. I am majoring in geosciences, and plan to continue this research as part of a junior project.

Internship Year


Project Category

Climate Change and Environmental Science


Sarmiento Group, Geosciences Department, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ


Jorge Sarmiento, Professor, Geosciences