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Instrument: XBT : Expendable Bathythermographs
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Description
The Expendable Bathythermograph (XBT) has been used by
oceanographers for many years to obtain information on the
temperature structure of the ocean to depths of up to 2000
meters. The use of XBT's to measure the ocean's subsurface has
significantly increased over the past decade. NOAA is actively
participating in an international effort to increase the number
of subsurface temperature observations in support of global
oceanographic and climate studies. NOAA's XBT program (SEAS)
currently supports about eighty voluntary observing ships
(VOS). Observations from these vessels are collected and coded
using the WMO bathy report format (JJYY) and transmitted via the
GOES and INMARSAT C satellites. SEAS vessels are responsible for
more than 14,000 XBT observations each year.

Additional information available at
http://seas.amverseas.noaa.gov/seas/xbt.html