Physical oceanographer Dr Steve Rintoul received the Society for Underwater Technology’s 2013 Oceanography Award in December, in recognition of his contribution to the field of oceanography.
Dr Rintoul works for the CSIRO in Hobart, Tasmania, and is leader of the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre Oceans Program.
Since he began working at CSIRO 22 years ago, Dr Rintoul’s research has laid the foundation for the growing recognition of the importance of the Southern Ocean in the climate system. His work has provided new understanding of the structure, dynamics and variability of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, the largest ocean current on Earth. He has also shown how the Southern Ocean circulation links the shallow and deep layers of the ocean to form a global network of ocean currents that strongly influence climate patterns. His research has provided new insights into the nature, causes and consequences of Southern Ocean change, and his leadership has been critical to advancing coordinated international investigation of the Southern Ocean and to promoting long term Southern Ocean observing systems.