A new method for the estimation of sinking particle fluxes from measurements of the particle size distribution, average sinking velocity, and carbon content
McDonnell, Andrew M. P.
Buesseler, Ken O.
MetadataShow full item record
We describe a new method for estimating sinking particulate carbon fluxes at high spatial and temporal resolutions from measurements of the particle concentration size distribution taken with an in situ camera system, in this case an autonomous video plankton recorder (VPR). Paired measurements of polyacrylamide gel traps and the VPR result in depth- and size-resolved parameterizations of the average sinking velocity, which enable the estimation of the flux size distribution from the concentration size distribution. Comparisons between the gel traps and the bulk carbon flux allows for the parameterization of the particle carbon content as a function of size. Together, these parameterizations permit the estimation of carbon fluxes from high-resolution VPR surveys. This method enables greater spatial, vertical, and temporal resolution of flux measurements beyond what is possible with conventional sediment traps. We tested this method in the Sargasso Sea and found that it was capable of accurately reproducing the fluxes measured in sediment traps while offering substantial improvement in the accuracy of the estimated fluxes compared to previous global and regional parameterizations. Our results point to the importance of local calibrations of the average sinking velocity and particle carbon content when estimating carbon fluxes from measurement of the concentration size distribution. This method holds important oceanographic potential for elucidating regional or basin scale carbon flows and providing new mechanistic insights into the function of the biological pump.
Author Posting. © Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography, 2012. This article is posted here by permission of Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Limnology and Oceanography: Methods 10 (2012): 329-346, doi:10.4319/lom.2012.10.329.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
What can paired measurements of Th isotope activity and particle concentration tell us about particle cycling in the ocean? Marchal, Olivier; Lam, Phoebe J. (2012-04-17)The ability of paired measurements of thorium isotope activity and particle concentration to constrain rate constants of sorption reactions and particle dynamics in the ocean is examined. This study is motivated by GEOTRACES ...
Fries, Jerry Stephen (Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2002-02)Predictions of deposition rate are integral to the transport of many constituents including contaminants, organic matter, and larvae. Review of the literature demonstrates a general appreciation for the potential control ...
Richardson, Mary Josephine (Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1980-05)This study of particulate matter in the water column and the underlying surface sediments verifies the occurrence of local, present-day resuspension in the deep sea. The location of the major portion of this work was the ...