Hao Zuo

Senior Scientist Ocean Data Assimilation
Research Department, Earth System Assimilation Section, Coupled Assimilation Group


Hao Zuo is responsible for Ocean Analysis System at ECMWF. He implements and maintains the latest operational Ocean Analysis-Reanalysis System (OCEAN5), which is used to initialize the ocean and sea-ice components of all ECMWF coupled forecasting systems (ENS, HRES, Seasonal). Hao is also in charge of integrating ocean observations (in-situ, SST, sea ice, SSH) into the ECMWF System for Earth System assimilation and carrying out Observing System Experiments for impact studies. Hao is the PI on a CMEMS service evolution project to evaluate the Benefits of dynamically modelled river discharge input for ocean and coupled system (BRONCO). He is also involved in several other research projects, including the EU H2020 AtlantOS and SPICES, the ESA Sea Level Climate Change Initiative (CCI), the EU FP7 MyOcean and MyOCEAN2, the Copernicus Marine Environment Service (CMEMS) GloRan.  Research interests include  assessment of ocean analysis system in the sense of coupled forecasting system, and study of climate signals derived from changes in sea-level, heat content, sea ice and other ECVs.

Professional interests:

My research interests include

  • Application of ocean analysis in NWP and climate monitoring
  • Ocean data assimilation and and ensemble generation
  • Uncertainty in climate signals derived from observations and retrospective analysis
  • Ocean overturning circulation and mixing process.
  • Heat content and freshwater budget in the ocean
Career background:


  • Ph.D., 2005-2009, Physical Oceanography, National Oceanography Centre,  University of Southampton, U.K.
  • Visiting student, 2007, Woods Hole Oceanography Institution, U.S.
  • M.Sc., 2003-2005, Physical Oceanography, Nanjing University, China
  • Linnaeus-Palme visiting student, 2004, Department of Hydrography, Uppsala University, Sweden
  • Bachelor degree, 1999-2003, Physical Geography, Nanjing University, China

Professional Experience

  • Since 04/2019: Ocean data assimilation, ECMWF Research Department, Earth System assimilation section 
  • Since 07/2012: Scientist, ECMWF Research Department, Marine Prediction Section and Earth System Assimilation Section
  • 11/2009-07/2012: IPY Arctic research Fellow, University of Reading,  Environmental Systems Science Centre.
External recognitions
  • 2008: Young Scientist Outstanding Poster Award in EGU General Assembling in Vienna.
  • since 2015: Member of COSPAR associate
  • since 2016: GODAE OceanView Observing System Evaluation Task Team (OSEval_TT)
  • 2018: Member of organising panel of ECMWF annual seminar.
  • since 2019: Expert of European Commission Research Executive Agency
  • since 2019: Expert member of Mercator Ocean International Marine DA working group
  • since 2020: EUMETSAT OSI-SAF Requirements Review Board Member
  • since 2020: Member of ESA CRISTAL MAG team
  • since 2021: Member of GOOS delivery partner task team
  • 2021: Member of organising committee for Joint ECMWF/OceanPredict workshop on Advances in Ocean Data Assimilation