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Gray, AR, Johnson KS, Bushinsky SM, Riser SC, Russell JL, Talley LD, Wanninkhof R, Williams NL, Sarmiento JL.  2018.  Autonomous biogeochemical floats detect significant carbon dioxide outgassing in the high-latitude Southern Ocean. Geophysical Research Letters. 45:9049-9057.   10.1029/2018gl078013   AbstractWebsite

Although the Southern Ocean is thought to account for a significant portion of the contemporary oceanic uptake of carbon dioxide (CO2), flux estimates in this region are based on sparse observations that are strongly biased toward summer. Here we present new estimates of Southern Ocean air-sea CO2 fluxes calculated with measurements from biogeochemical profiling floats deployed by the Southern Ocean Carbon and Climate Observations and Modeling project during 2014-2017. Compared to ship-based CO2 flux estimates, the float-based fluxes find significantly stronger outgassing in the zone around Antarctica where carbon-rich deep waters upwell to the surface ocean. Although interannual variability contributes, this difference principally stems from the lack of autumn and winter ship-based observations in this high-latitude region. These results suggest that our current understanding of the distribution of oceanic CO2 sources and sinks may need revision and underscore the need for sustained year-round biogeochemical observations in the Southern Ocean. Plain Language Summary The Southern Ocean absorbs a great deal of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and helps to shape the climate of Earth. However, we do not have many observations from this part of the world, especially in winter, because it is remote and inhospitable. Here we present new observations from robotic drifting buoys that take measurements of temperature, salinity, and other water properties year-round. We use these data to estimate the amount of carbon dioxide being absorbed by the Southern Ocean. In the open water region close to Antarctica, the new estimates are remarkably different from the previous estimates, which were based on data collected from ships. We discuss some possible reasons that the float-based estimate is different and how this changes our understanding of how the ocean absorbs carbon dioxide.

Williams, NL, Juranek LW, Feely RA, Johnson KS, Sarmiento JL, Talley LD, Dickson AG, Gray AR, Wanninkhof R, Russell JL, Riser SC, Takeshita Y.  2017.  Calculating surface ocean pCO(2) from biogeochemical Argo floats equipped with pH: An uncertainty analysis. Global Biogeochemical Cycles. 31:591-604.   10.1002/2016gb005541   AbstractWebsite

More than 74 biogeochemical profiling floats that measure water column pH, oxygen, nitrate, fluorescence, and backscattering at 10 day intervals have been deployed throughout the Southern Ocean. Calculating the surface ocean partial pressure of carbon dioxide (pCO(2sw)) from float pH has uncertainty contributions from the pH sensor, the alkalinity estimate, and carbonate system equilibrium constants, resulting in a relative standard uncertainty in pCO(2sw) of 2.7% (or 11 mu atm at pCO(2sw) of 400 mu atm). The calculated pCO(2sw) from several floats spanning a range of oceanographic regimes are compared to existing climatologies. In some locations, such as the subantarctic zone, the float data closely match the climatologies, but in the polar Antarctic zone significantly higher pCO(2sw) are calculated in the wintertime implying a greater air-sea CO2 efflux estimate. Our results based on four representative floats suggest that despite their uncertainty relative to direct measurements, the float data can be used to improve estimates for air-sea carbon flux, as well as to increase knowledge of spatial, seasonal, and interannual variability in this flux. Plain Language Summary The Southern Ocean is a key player in the global flow of carbon, yet it is hard to reach, and there are relatively few measurements there, especially in winter. Measuring the amount of carbon dioxide gas in seawater is key to advancing our understanding of the Southern Ocean. More than 74 robotic floats that use sensors to measure seawater properties have been deployed throughout the Southern Ocean, and each has a lifetime of around 5 years. It is currently not possible to directly measure carbon dioxide gas from these floats; however, it is possible to estimate carbon dioxide from things that the float can measure, like pH, a measure of ocean acidity. Here surface ocean carbon dioxide is estimated from several floats and compared to two ship-based estimates. In some locations, the floats closely match the existing estimates, but in other locations the floats see significantly higher surface ocean carbon dioxide in the wintertime, reinforcing the idea that the Southern Ocean's role in the global carbon cycle needs a closer look. Our results show that despite not measuring carbon dioxide directly, these floats will help scientists learn a lot about the Southern Ocean's part in the global flow of carbon.

Williams, NL, Juranek LW, Johnson KS, Feely RA, Riser SC, Talley LD, Russell JL, Sarmiento JL, Wanninkhof R.  2016.  Empirical algorithms to estimate water column pH in the Southern Ocean. Geophysical Research Letters. 43:3415-3422.   10.1002/2016gl068539   AbstractWebsite

Empirical algorithms are developed using high-quality GO-SHIP hydrographic measurements of commonly measured parameters (temperature, salinity, pressure, nitrate, and oxygen) that estimate pH in the Pacific sector of the Southern Ocean. The coefficients of determination, R-2, are 0.98 for pH from nitrate (pH(N)) and 0.97 for pH from oxygen (pH(Ox)) with RMS errors of 0.010 and 0.008, respectively. These algorithms are applied to Southern Ocean Carbon and Climate Observations and Modeling (SOCCOM) biogeochemical profiling floats, which include novel sensors (pH, nitrate, oxygen, fluorescence, and backscatter). These algorithms are used to estimate pH on floats with no pH sensors and to validate and adjust pH sensor data from floats with pH sensors. The adjusted float data provide, for the first time, seasonal cycles in surface pH on weekly resolution that range from 0.05 to 0.08 on weekly resolution for the Pacific sector of the Southern Ocean.

Talley, LD, Tishchenko P, Luchin V, Nedashkovskiy A, Sagalaev S, Kang DJ, Warner M, Min DH.  2004.  Atlas of Japan (East) Sea hydrographic properties in summer, 1999. Progress in Oceanography. 61:277-348.   10.1016/j.pocean.2004.06.011   AbstractWebsite

Hydrographic properties from CTD and discrete bottle sample profiles covering the Japan (East) Sea in summer, 1999, are presented in vertical sections, maps at standard depths, maps on isopycnal surfaces, and as property-property distributions. This data set covers most of the Sea with the exception of the western boundary region and northern Tatar Strait, and includes nutrients, pH, alkalinity, and chlorofluorocarbons, as well as the usual temperature, salinity, and oxygen observations. (C) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.