Imperial College London

Ronan McAdam

Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Physics

Research Postgraduate



ronan.mcadam11 Website




708Huxley BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Ocean Current Modelling - Physical Oceanography - Marine Plastic Pollution

My research focusses on understanding the connections between different parts of the ocean. Finding plastic waste and determining the transport of heat, so important for the state of the climate, are just two topical applications to this work. I use a range of stochastic models, global datasets and numerical models to recreate the complexity of ocean motion.

Supervisors: Dr Arnaud Czaja & Dr Erik van Sebille (Utrecht)

Current areas of research:

  • Transport Barriers: Examining the role of the Agulhas Current and Gulf Stream in inter-ocean transport
  • Ocean Surface Models: Improving stochastic (Markov-chain) representations of current systems
  • Detecting plastic hot-spots: Predicting accumulation regions of plastic waste

Outreach & Education

Work on the "Plastic Not Fantastic in our Oceans" campaign:
Royal Society Summer Science 2016 Highlights
Crowd-Sourcing Pollution Solutions
Grantham Institute Project

I also give frequent talks at school events and public lectures.

Space & Atmospheric Physics (SPAT)
The Grantham Institute of Climate Change and the Environment

I am proud to be part of the Science and Solutions for a Chaning Planet (SSCP) Doctoral Training Program (DTP), funded by NERC and The Grantham Institute.



McAdam R, van Sebille E, 2018, Surface Connectivity and Interocean Exchanges From Drifter-Based Transition Matrices, Journal of Geophysical Research-oceans, Vol:123, ISSN:2169-9275, Pages:514-532

van Sebille E, Griffies SM, Abernathey R, et al., 2018, Lagrangian ocean analysis: Fundamentals and practices, Ocean Modelling, Vol:121, ISSN:1463-5003, Pages:49-75

Collins GS, Lynch E, McAdam R, et al., 2017, A numerical assessment of simple airblast models of impact airbursts, Meteoritics & Planetary Science, Vol:52, ISSN:1086-9379, Pages:1542-1560

McAdam R, 2017, Plastic in the ocean: How much is out there?, Significance, Vol:14, ISSN:1740-9705, Pages:24-27

More Publications