Robotic Observations of Enhanced Carbon Biomass and Export at 55S During SOFeX


James K. B. Bishop, Todd J. Wood, Russ E. Davis, and Jeffrey T. Sherman (2004)

Science 304, 417-420

Abstract. Autonomous floats profiling in high-nitrate low-silicate waters of the Southern Ocean observed carbon biomass variability and carbon exported to depths of 100 m during the 2002 Southern Ocean Iron Experiment (SOFeX) to detect the effects of iron fertilization of surface water there. Control and "in-patch" measurements documented a greater than fourfold enhancement of carbon biomass in the iron-amended waters. Carbon export through 100 m increased two- to sixfold as the patch subducted below a front. The molar ratio of iron added to carbon exported ranged between 10^4 and 10^5. The biomass buildup and export were much higher than expected for iron-amended low-silicate waters.

Figure: LBNL's Explorer during SOFeX.

One of our Carbon Explorers looking over Dr. Richard Barber's shoulder during SOFeX.

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