In situ pore water oxygen microprofiles from the Polar Front, Southern South Atlantic Ocean

Without doubt, global climate change is directly linked to the anthropogenic release of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (UN IPCC-Report 2007). Therefore, research efforts to comprehend the global carbon cycle have increased during the last years. In the context of the observed changes, it is of particular interest to decipher the role of the hydro-, bio- and atmospheres and how the different compartments of the earth system are affected by the increase of atmospheric CO2. Due to its huge carbon inventory, the marine carbon cycle represents the most important component in this respect. Numerous findings suggest that the Southern Ocean plays a key role in terms of oceanic CO2 uptake. However, an exact quantification of such fluxes of material is hard to achieve for large areas, not least on account of the inaccessibility of this remote region. In particular, there exist so far only few accurate data for benthic carbon fluxes. The latter can be derived from high resolution pore water oxygen profiles, as one possible method. However the ex situ flux determinations carried out on sediment cores, tend to suffer from temperature and pressure artefacts. Alternatively, oxygen microprofiles can be measured in situ, i.e. at the seafloor. Until now, no such data have been published for the Southern Ocean. During the Antarctic Expedition ANT-XXI/4, within the framework of this thesis, in situ and ex situ oxygen profiles were measured and used to derive benthic organic carbon fluxes. Having both types of measurements from the same locations, it was possible to establish a depth-related correction function which was applied subsequently to revise published and additional unpublished carbon fluxes to the seafloor. This resulted in a consistent data base of benthic carbon inputs covering many important sub-regions of the Southern Ocean including the Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas (southern Pacific), Scotia and Weddell Seas (southern South Atlantic) as well as the Crozet Basin (southern Indian Ocean). Including additional locations on the Antarctic Shelf, there are now 134 new and revised measurement locations, covering almost 180° of the Southern Ocean, for which benthic organic carbon fluxes and sedimentary oxygen penetration depth values are available.Further, benthic carbon fluxes were empirically related to dominant diatom distributions in surface sediments as well as to long-term remotely sensed chlorophyll-a estimates. The comparison of these results with benthic carbon fluxes of the entire Atlantic Ocean reveals significantly higher export efficiencies for the Southern Ocean than have previously been assumed, especially for the area of the opal belt.

Metadata Access
Creator Sachs, Oliver; Sauter, Eberhard-Jürgen
Publisher PANGAEA - Data Publisher for Earth & Environmental Science
Publication Year 2007
Funding Reference German Science Foundation
Rights Data access is restricted (moratorium, sensitive data, license constraints)
OpenAccess true
Language English
Resource Type Collection of Datasets
Format application/zip
Size 7 datasets
Discipline Earth System Research
Spatial Coverage (2.193W, -52.585S, 12.258E, -49.000N)
Temporal Coverage Begin 2004-04-02T08:30:00Z
Temporal Coverage End 2004-04-30T17:25:00Z