Site web de l'antenne de la Seyne de l'Institut Méditerranéen d'Océanographie (MIO: Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography
(formerly LOPB, formerly LOB)

NEWS: Les incendies de la région du Parc National de Port Cros vus depuis l’espace  (26 juillet 2017)

 Updated Sep. 2016

Time series of SST and SSS to study the Dense Water Formation in the Gulf of Lion: results from the TRANSMED initiative (fully-autonomous and low-cost thermosalinometers on ships of opportunity)
Presentation at the 9th Workshop HyMeX, Sept. 2015 (

General circulation of the water masses in the Mediterranean Sea, 

mesoscale phenomena and biological response.

Includes updated Mediterranean-wide schema of the surface (Atlantic Water), intermediate (LIW), and Mediteranean deep waters circulations
Ref.: Millot Claude and Isabelle Taupier-Letage, 2005. Circulation in the Mediterranean Sea, The Handbook of Environmental Chemistry, Volume K, May 2005, Pages 29 - 66 DOI: 10.1007/b107143.

Schéma de la circulation de surface en Méditerranée (Eau Atlantique) , I. Taupier-Letage d'après Millot et Taupier-Letage (2005)

Les îles d’Hyères dans le système de circulation marine et atmosphérique de la Méditerranée  TAUPIER-LETAGE I., PIAZZOLA J., ZAKARDJIAN B., 2013. Les îles d’Hyères dans le système de circulation marine et atmosphérique de la Méditerranée. Sci. Rep. Port-Cros natl Park, 27 : 29-52 (2013)


The eastern basin of the Mediterranean:

The western basin of the Mediterranean

1.     The Algerian sub-basin:

o    Role of the (mesoscale) algerian eddies in particle transfer:

o    Van Haren H., C. Millot and I. Taupier-Letage, 2006. Fast deep sinking in Mediterranean eddies. Geophys. Res. Let., 33, L04606, doi: 10.1029/2005GL025367.

o    Gorsky, G., L. Prieur,  Taupier-Letage I., Stemmann, L. and Picheral, M., 2002. "Large particulate matter in the Western Mediterranean:  I. LPM distribution related to mesoscale hydrodynamics." Journal of Marine Systems 33-34: 289-311.

General circulation and mesoscale currents off Algeria from a network of currentmeters (1-year time series)

1.    MILLOT C., M. BENZOHRA and I. TAUPIER-LETAGE, 1997. Circulation off Algeria inferred from the Médiprod-5 current meters. Deep-Sea Res., 44, 9-10, 1467-1495.

·         2 The Northern Current (ex Liguro-Provenço-Catalan)


Projects in the whole Mediterranean Sea

·         High-resolution spatio-temporal monitoring of the surface using ferries and cargo ships (TRANSMED)

·         Hydrological variability and long term trends in the Mediterranean (CIESM HYDRO-CHANGES initiative)

·         The Mediterranean Sea in- and out-flows' heterogeneities, Millot, C., Progress in Oceanography  (2013), doi:

o    Another description of the Mediterranean outflow (C. Millot, In Oceanography, Volume 82, Issue 2, August 2009, Pages 101-124, doi:10.1016/j.pocean.2009.04.016 )

Claude Millot, Julio Candela, Jean-Luc Fuda and Youssef Tber, Large warming and salinification of the Mediterranean outflow due to changes in its composition, Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, Volume 53, Issue 4, , April 2006, Pages 656-666.

Other documents: 

16-19 January 2008, NATO Undersea Research Centre, La Spezia, Italy ( )


(see also the
terminology page)

Gyres are circulation features induced by wind and/or thermohaline forcing and/or topographic features (such as straits) that are clearly constrained by the bathymetry (at basin and subbasin scales),and thusthey do not propagate. They are characterised as clockwise in the Alboran (mainly due to the orientation of the Strait of Gibraltar) and everywhere else as counterclockwise (due to the Coriolis effect). Parts of the gyres can be unstable.

Eddies are phenomena generated either by processes that destabilise alongslope currents (such as the Algerian Current) or by the wind stress curl locally induced by orographic effects. They are characterised as cyclonic / anticyclonic, not constrained by the bathymetry and can move. Eddies are mesoscale (some 10s to a few 100s km) features that will be characterised as small (up to ~50 km), medium (50-150 km) or large (150-250 km).

The term "basin" is assigned exclusively to the two major parts of the Mediterranean Sea

We assign the term "subbasin"  to all parts of the western and eastern basins of the Mediterranean Sea that are usually referred to as seas, basins or passages. For instance, the parts of the eastern basin commonly named Ionian Sea, Cretan Passage or Levantine Basin, being not basically different, will all be qualified as "subbasins". We omit the term subbasin when self-explanatory.