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Dissolved organic carbon uptake and production in the water column

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    The COMICS (Controls over Ocean Mesopelagic Interior Carbon Storage) project consists of observations, at sea, of particle flux and stable isotopes. It applies organic geochemical and molecular biological techniques to samples collected using nets and traps. The study areas are the tropical Atlantic and Southern Oceans. The results will be combined with models to quantify the flow of carbon in the ocean’s ‘twilight’ zone in order to accurately model global climate change. This ‘twilight’ zone is the part of the ocean between 100m and 1000m below the sea surface, where only a small amount of light from the sun can still penetrate. By investigating carbon dynamics in the ocean interior, COMICS will help to improve predictions of future global climate change. The COMICS project is led by the National Oceanography Centre and is a collaboration between the British Antarctic Survey and the universities of Queen Mary London, Liverpool, Oxford and Southampton. The project received funding from the Natural Environmental Research Council and runs between 2017 and 2022.

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    Glider data - temperature, salinity, chlorophyll, CDOM, BBP and dissolved oxygen from the English Channel, collected as part of the CAMPUS (Combining Autonomous observations and Models for Predicting and Understanding Shelf seas) project. The purpose of this dataset was proof of concept for a UK Met Office numerical model for predicting phytoplankton bloom locations and also for assimilation into these models for improved forecasting. This is the delayed-mode data set from the glider (high-resolution data stored on the glider and post processed). The data were processed from binary files using a Matlab toolbox and calibrated where possible using CTD data.

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    This dataset comprises measurements of primary productivity, nutrient, optics and water column structure data (including turbulence information) collected from the Celtic Sea and nearby shelf-edge during 25 July to 14 August 2003 and 15 July to 06 August 2005. Compatible, high-resolution vertical profiles of physical, chemical, and biological parameters were obtained. These were collected by deployments of a conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) sensor package, a Fast Light Yo-yo (FLY) turbulence profiler and SeaSoar profiler sections, thus allowing quantification of vertical fluxes and primary production on tidal and internal wave time scales. During the CTD profiles, water samples were taken and analysed for nutrients, chlorophyll, primary productivity, sediment concentration, coloured dissolved organic matter (CDOM), trace metal concentrations, dissolved oxygen and salinity. Optical profiles were also taken during 2005 using two radiometers; a Biospherical Instruments PRR-600 and a Satlantic MicroPro. In addition, acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) moorings were deployed around the Celtic Sea to measure current and temperature profiles. The main aim was to investigate the generation and dissipation of turbulence in the thermocline, and to quantify how the resulting mixing (supplying nutrients and controlling the light experienced by the algae) affects the growth of phytoplankton within the sub-surface chlorophyll maximum. The data were collected by the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory (now the National Oceanography Centre) and by Bangor University. Data management was provided by the British Oceanographic Data Centre.

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    The dataset comprises a wide range of physical and biogeochemical oceanographic and atmospheric parameters, plus additional biological measurements and observations. Hydrographic parameters include temperature, salinity, current velocities, fluorescence and attenuance, while biogeochemical and biological analyses of water samples provided measurements of dissolved gases, hydrocarbons, sulphur species, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), halocarbons, nutrients, pigments, bacteria, phytoplankton and zooplankton. Bird identification and cetacean abundance studies were also undertaken, as were tracer release experiments using both inert chemical (sulphur hexafluoride, SF6) and bacterial (Bacillus globigii) tracers. Meteorological data were also collected, including concentrations of various chemicals, supplemented by standard measurements of air temperature, pressure, irradiance, humidity and wind velocities. The data were collected in the North Atlantic Ocean and North Sea between 1996 and 1998, as follows: Eastern Atlantic off the coast of Ireland (June-July 1996 and May 1997); southern North Sea (October-November 1996); and North Eastern Atlantic between the UK and Iceland (June-July 1998). The data were collected during four cruises (RRS Challenger CH127, CH129, CH133 and RRS Discovery D234) using a variety of equipment, including instrumentation deployed at sampling stations (e.g. conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) profilers) and underway sensors that ran throughout each cruise, yielding continuous measurements of both hydrographic and meteorological parameters. Discrete air and water samplers were also used to measure atmospheric and hydrographic parameters throughout each cruise. The data collection periods were associated with individual ACOSE air-sea exchange experiments: two Eastern Atlantic Experiments (EAE96 and EAE97); ASGAMAGE in the southern North Sea; and the North Atlantic Experiment, NAE. ACSOE was a 5-year UK NERC Thematic Research Programme investigating the chemistry of the lower atmosphere (0 - 12 km) over the oceans. The Marine Aerosol and Gas Exchange (MAGE) study group was the only component of the ACSOE Project that included measurements in the marine environment. ACSOE data management was a shared responsibility between the British Atmospheric Data Centre (BADC) and the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC). BODC handled the management of ship data as well as all other data collected in the water column during the ACSOE/MAGE cruises. BODC assisted in the onboard collection and subsequent working up of ship data, and assembled all marine data in BODC's relational database carrying out quality control and data processing as required. ACSOE was led by Prof. Stuart Penkett of the University of East Anglia and cruise principle scientists included representatives of the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne, and the University of East Anglia.

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    The programme involved two major fieldwork activities: a deep ocean research cruise and a programme of freshwater studies. The marine component of the dataset generated a total of 430 distinct variables, quantifying the meteorology, hydrography, chemistry, biogeochemistry, and the microbial plankton (bacteria, phytoplankton and microzooplankton) biomass, taxonomic composition along the 5500 km cruise track in the Indian Ocean during August-September 2001. Measurements were mainly made on water samples collected either from the sea surface while the ship was underway or from a range of depths during conductivity-temperatue-depth (CTD) and water sampling stations at each of 11 sites occupied in the Indian Ocean. The maximum depth sampled at open ocean sites ranged from 300 to 3000 m. Short sections of 300 m deep CTD and fluorescence profiles were also obtained using a moving vessel profiler (MVP). The freshwater component of the dataset generated variables from Priest Pot in the Lake District and from a range of other freshwater sites around the UK. It contains underpinning weekly time-series measurements characterising the physical, chemical and biological condition of the water column at the Priest Pot sampling site between 2002-2004, together with data from studies focused on the seasonal and spatial dynamics of viruses, bacteria and picophytoplankton, trace metal distribution and the ubiquity of microbial protists. The database also contains 376 gene sequences from genetic material extracted from environmental samples. The programme was a 5-year Thematic Programme funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and the purpose of the study was to improve understanding of aquatic microbial biodiversity, with the emphasis on community interactions, ecosystem function (e.g. biogeochemical cycling of carbon and nutrients, and the potential for biotechnological exploitation. The programme involved scientists from the Plymouth Marine Laboratory, the National Oceanography Centre Southampton, University of Cardiff School of Biosciences, University of Cardiff School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of Warwick School of Biological Sciences, University of Newcastle School of Civil Engineering and Geosciences, University of Bristol School of Biological Sciences, University of Oxford Department of Zoology, University of Liverpool School of Biological Sciences, University of Stirling School of Biological and Environmental Sciences, the Marine Biological Association of the UK, Lancaster University Department of Environmental Science and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH) Lancaster and Dorset.