Mechanism for export of sediment-derived iron in an upwelling regime
Figure S1: Density initialization for the model taken from data collected off the coast of Newport, Oregon in August, 2009 using a CTD cast. (98.68Kb)
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Model simulations performed with a three-dimensional, high-resolution, process study ocean model of eastern boundary upwelling systems are used to describe a mechanism that efficiently transports sediment-derived dissolved iron offshore in the subsurface through the bottom boundary layer (BBL) during downwelling-favorable wind events. In the model, sediment-derived iron accumulates in the BBL on the outer shelf when the winds are upwelling-favorable. When the wind reverses, the iron-laden BBL is mixed into the water column and transported offshore along isopycnals that intersect the bottom. Depending on the frequency of wind reversal, between 10–50% of the shelf sediment-derived iron flux is exported offshore through this previously unidentified subsurface pathway. If this mechanism operates on all coastal upwelling regimes, the global export of sediment-derived iron to the open ocean would be equivalent to ten times larger than the estimated source of dissolved iron from aerosols.
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2012. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Geophysical Research Letters 39 (2012): L03601, doi:10.1029/2011GL050366.
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