Marine heatwaves (MHWs), often referred to as discrete, prolonged, and anomalously warm water events, have drawn significant attention in both research circles and the broader community, due to their increasing intensity and duration under climate change and their resultant marine ecosystem and societal impacts. A typical MHW goes through phases of growth and decay, marking its temporal evolution. The diversity in these evolutions highlights the complexity of MHWs, encompassing their characteristics and mechanisms. Within this project, the student will utilise observational data to detect global MHW events and subsequently classify them based on their evolutions. If time permits, an analysis will be carried out on these MHW types to understand their features and the underlying processes, which can potentially fill a gap in our current understanding of MHWs. Through this project, the student will gain an understanding of MHWs and acquire skills in analysing them. 

Supervisors: Zijie Zhao ( and Neil Holbrook (

Location: IMAS, UTAS