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We sincerely call for abstracts submitting to the following sessions for in-depth discussions on advancing and applying DTOs

1. Ocean Observations & Data Systems

Co-chairs: Marjolaine Krug (Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, South Africa), Toste Tanhua (GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel), Yan Du (South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences)

Ocean observation is important to generate the information needed to understand, manage and protect the ocean. Data systems are essential for integrating ocean observations and key information for ocean and climate research. Ocean observations and data systems allow us to understand and improve our predictions of ocean systems, different ocean hazards, climate variability and global change, as well as to provide critical information for policymakers on ocean sustainable development. This session welcomes topics: (1) bringing together researchers working on ocean observations and data systems to discuss the new technological developments for implementing observation programmes and refining data systems; (2) presenting the important advances and key applications of ocean observations and data systems in understanding the mechanisms of regional and global ocean problems and climate variabilities and changes; (3) sharing current status, challenges, opportunities, and future collaboration plans for establishing ocean observations and data systems.

2. Data Analytics & Model Prediction Engines

Co-chairs: Enrique Alvarez (Mercator Ocean International), Eric Chassignet (Florida State University), Pierre Bahurel (Mercator Ocean International), Zhao Jing (Ocean University of China)

Data analytics and prediction engines maximise the understanding and value of data, and provide the means to add value to ocean observation through predictive modelling, emulation, machine learning and AI, to create, manipulate and analyse ocean information. Digital twins incorporate the additional capacity for the user to modify prediction engines to explore ‘what-if’ scenarios and their likely consequences. This session welcomes topics on the: (1) development of tailored data analytics and predictive capabilities based on machine learning and AI that provide the digital twin with its necessary functionality; (2) development or improvement of model-based simulations and solutions for understanding and predicting the short- and long-term evolution of Essential Ocean Variables at global, regional, and local scales; (3) development or improvement of data assimilation solutions and/or their components for improving performance of integrated modelling systems.

3. Data Lakes & Interoperability

Co-chairs: Jan-Bart Calewaert (Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO), Pier Luigi Buttigieg (Helmholtz Metadata Collaboration), Suixiang Shi (National Marine Data and Information Service, China)

Digital twins are powered by diverse, persistent, and rich (meta)data flows. Observational data, modelling and analytical outputs, diagnostic data, and AI-generated data are just a few of the data types to bring together in an effective twinning framework. Data Lakes are technological constructs/tools that help improve the speed and scale of data analysis, which is essential for digital twin applications, providing high-speed connections between external resources and data within the lake. This session welcomes topics: (1) promoting (meta)data interoperability and reducing friction at all levels by transiting the sources and sinks of data flow from unstructured data lakes to integration-on-demand data spaces; (2) discussing the position of data lakes within digital twins and standards of data lake products; (3) exploring interoperability conventions and advancements that are necessary to link existing data flows to twins (4) identifying measures to help existing digital stakeholders adapt to digital twins; (5) asking how twins themselves should interoperate with each other and the broader digital ecosystem.

In addressing these issues and questions, we seek to ensure that independent digital twins are able to collectively address the challenges of sustainable ocean management while supporting novel research opportunities enabled by an ever-accelerating global digital transformation.

4. Interactive Layers & Visualisations

Co-chairs: Jeroen Steenbeek (Ecopath International Initiative), Rongrong Ji (Xiamen University), Zhaoyuan Yu (Nanjing Normal University)

The focus of this session is on the Interactive and Provisioning Layer, which pertains to developing user-friendly interfaces that provide meaningful data and scenarios to different users needs. The challenges associated with delivering relevant information and visualisations, which are crucial for establishing a meaningful connection between the Digital Twin Object and users or machines, will be discussed. This session welcomes topics: (1) establishing design guidelines for visualisations and data provisioning strategies that accurately depict the required information and meet different users’ needs; (2) collaborations with scientific communities, gaming and commercial industries, policymakers, and other interested parties to develop adaptable provisioning layers that are generic and feature-rich for creating specific DTOs; (3) exploring ongoing activities and the standards and best practices for visualisation engines, data provisioning, and interaction with analytical models, as well as challenges associated.

We welcome you to participate in this engaging discussion on the future of digital twinning and the crucial role of the Provisioning Layer. It's an excellent opportunity to engage with experts in the field and learn about the latest advancements in digital twinning.

5. Advancing DTO Architectures & Interoperability

Co-chairs: Jay Pearlman (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers), Ute Brönner (SINTEF-Ocean, Norway), Zhong Peng (East China Normal University)

Digital twins enhance our ability to make informed operations, scientific management, and policy decisions about the systems they represent. They also enable impactful communication that brings data to life. To meet these objectives, Digital twins of the ocean (DTO) are created as a complex integration of data, models, analytics, visualizations, and rules. They resort to the state-of-the-art technology of supercomputing and AI and may employ Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) Visualisation Interface. Interoperability methods and integrative data management build the fundamental basis for reusable twins and twin components. Alternative architectures and frameworks have been proposed to create digital twins. Interoperability, standards, and best practices are key capabilities; localised or topical DTOs rely on the ability to (re)use diverse interoperable data sources, models, and building blocks. This session invites talks on: (1) discussing what interoperability methods and integrative data management could be applied as the fundamental basis for reusable twins and twin components; (2) exploring interoperability, standards, and best practices associated with alternative architectures and frameworks; (3) discussing DTO architecture frameworks and associated interoperability approaches for collecting guidelines, recommendations, and best practices for interoperable DTOs.

6. Education, Training & Capacity Development

Co-chairs: Jing Li (Climate and Ocean - Variability, Predictability, and Change), Mônica Muelbert (Universidade Federal de São Paulo), Yuntao Wang (The Second Institute of Oceanography, Ministry of Natural Resources, China)

Session 6 provides participants with the opportunity to share their experiences and best practices related to capacity development as well as to learn from expert practitioners and educators in the field. Through this collaborative approach, the session aims to promote equal and inclusive access to DTO technologies and capacity development, ensuring that all members of the community have the skills and knowledge necessary to effectively utilize DTOs for their specific needs. To ensure that the session is inclusive and comprehensive, an online survey will be conducted ahead of the meeting. This survey will be accessible to a broad community, with a particular focus on hearing the voices of those in the Global South and end-user communities. This information will be used to inform the development of new systems and to improve existing ones, ensuring that they are accessible, effective, and meet the specific needs of the community.

This session welcomes topics: (1) advancing the application of the technologies from data acquisition to the stage of interactive visualisation; (2) sharing experiences and best practices related to the education, training, and capacity building of DTOs; (3) promoting equal and inclusive access to DTO technologies and capacity development.

7. Showcase of DTO Applications

Co-chairs: Delphine Lobelle (Fugro Ltd.), Qinghua Yang (Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai)), Ute Brönner (SINTEF-Ocean, Norway), Yawei Luo (Xiamen University)

In this session, experts are invited to showcase their work and share their experiences in utilizing digital twins to advance our understanding of the ocean. This session welcomes applications in the following fields: (1) Ecosystem Dynamics and Biodiversity: delve into the use of digital twins to simulate the intricate interplay of marine species, ecosystem health, and the conservation of biodiversity. (2) Coastal and Marine Hazards: learn how digital twins can be employed to model and predict coastal erosion, storm surges, tsunamis, and other natural hazards, assisting in the development of early warning systems. (3) Sustainable Fisheries: discover how DTOs contribute to sustainable fisheries management by optimizing fishing practices and predicting fish populations. (4) Ocean Exploration and Remote Sensing: uncover the role of digital twins in simulating underwater environments, guiding remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), and analyzing data from satellites and oceanographic sensors, enhancing our ability to explore and monitor the vast expanses of the world's oceans. (5) Ocean Carbon Sink: apply digital twins in deepening our understanding of the dynamics of ocean carbon cycles, predict the trends of carbon uptake and release by the ocean, and facilitate the formulation of effective strategies for carbon reduction and climate change adaptation. (6) Socio-economic Scenario Analysis: utilize digital twins to predict marine environmental changes across various scenarios of socio-economic pathways and climate change, illustrating both real-world and hypothetical behaviours desired to be simulated by scientists and decision-makers.