The 2015 Arne Richter Award for Outstanding Young Scientists is awarded to Katrin Schroeder for her achievements in the field of experimental oceanography, to which she has contributed original ideas on the understanding of the formation and spreading of Mediterranean deep waters.
Katrin Schroeder focuses her research on the causes and effects of interannual- to decadal-scale changes in the Mediterranean Sea circulation. In particular, she analysed an extensive in-situ dataset showing a deep-water formation event in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea during the last decade. Her analysis revealed an extended volume of warmer and saltier deep water for the years 2004–2006, which substantially renewed the resident deep water. She has explored the causes of the deep-water formation, tracing its origin back to the Eastern Mediterranean transient in the early 1990s. She has further examined, with new observations, the spreading of the new deep water as a transient tracer through the western Mediterranean.
With her scientific ideas, Schroeder has contributed significantly to the understanding of the physical oceanography of the Mediterranean, including important aspects such as interannual variability of tracer distribution, water mass exchanges through Mediterranean straits, and driving forces of the Mediterranean thermohaline circulation. She has participated in numerous scientific cruises and continues to develop targeted field programmes with her growing network of young Mediterranean scientists.
Because of her very influential and productive scientific work, she can already be regarded as a leader of Mediterranean physical and biogeochemical oceanography.