High productivity in an ice melting hot spot at the eastern boundary of the Weddell Gyre

Geibert, W, Assmy, P, Bakker, DCE, Hanfland, C, Hoppema, M, Pichevin, L, Schroder, M, Schwarz, JN, Stimac, I, Usbeck, U and Webb, A (2010) High productivity in an ice melting hot spot at the eastern boundary of the Weddell Gyre. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 24 (3). GB3007. ISSN 1944-9224

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Abstract

The Southern Ocean (SO) plays a key role in modulating atmospheric CO 2 via physical and biological processes. However, over much of the SO, biological activity is iron-limited. New in situ data from the Antarctic zone south of Africa in a region centered at ~20°E-25°E reveal a previously overlooked region of high primary production, comparable in size to the northwest African upwelling region. Here, sea ice together with enclosed icebergs is channeled by prevailing winds to the eastern boundary of the Weddell Gyre, where a sharp transition to warmer waters causes melting. This cumulative melting provides a steady source of iron, fuelling an intense phytoplankton bloom that is not fully captured by monthly satellite production estimates. These findings imply that future changes in sea-ice cover and dynamics could have a significant effect on carbon sequestration in the SO.

Item Type: Article
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Rosie Cullington
Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2011 15:05
Last Modified: 05 Aug 2019 15:30
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/20293
DOI: 10.1029/2009GB003657

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