Potential Temperature Calculator

This calculator derives potential temperature from in-situ temperature, salinity and pressure. Unless otherwise stated, potential temperature is usually defined as the temperature a water parcel has when it is brought to the surface; this is the default calculation. To calculate potential temperature relative to a level different from the surface, enter the appropriate reference pressure.


Enter your values:

temperature (°C):    salinity:   pressure (10 kPa): 
reference pressure (10 kPa): 

  Θ =   °C

Note: 10 kPa = 1 dbar is close to the pressure increase that corresponds to a depth increase of 1 m.
Entering a pressure value equal to the depth in metres will give an approximate result.

Temperature uses IPTS-68, salinity uses PSS-78; see reference.

Calculation based on Fofonoff, P. and R. C. Millard Jr (1983) Algorithms for computation of fundamental properties of seawater. Unesco Technical Papers in Marine Science 44, 53 pp.

© 2000 M. Tomczak. Last updated 2 April 2000

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