Short Name:


Title: The Impacts of Climate Variability on Primary Productivity and Carbon Distributions in the Middle Atlantic Bight and Gulf of Maine (CliVEC)

Research Team:
* Antonio Mannino (PI) - NASA GSFC
* Michael Novak - NASA GSFC
* Margaret Mulholland (co-PI) - Old Dominion University
* Peter Bernhardt - Old Dominion University
* CJ Staryk - Old Dominion University
* Kimberly Hyde (co-PI) - NOAA NEFSC
* Jon Hare (collaborator) - NOAA NEFSC
* David Lary (co-I) - University of Texas at Dallas

Observations from the MODIS and SeaWiFS time series (1997-2012) and measurements from an extensive field campaign are employed to examine how inter-annual and decadal-scale climate variability affects primary productivity and organic carbon distributions along the continental margin of the U.S. northeast coast. Estimates of daily primary productivity (PP) will be computed using the Ocean Productivity from Absorption of Light (OPAL) model. OPAL vertically resolves phytoplankton absorption of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) and relates the chlorophyll-specific absorption coefficient to sea-surface temperature (SST), where SST is a proxy for seasonal changes in the phytoplankton community. OPAL will be validated with new field measurements of PP including dissolved organic carbon production.

Field measurements of particulate (POC) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and the absorption coefficients of phytoplankton (aph) and colored dissolved organic matter (aCDOM) will allow us to extend the validation range (temporally and spatially) for our coastal algorithms and reduce the uncertainties in satellite-derived estimates of OPAL PP, POC, DOC, aph and aCDOM. Furthermore, we will apply our extensive field data to derive region-independent ocean color algorithms for PP, POC, DOC aCDOM and aph using machine learning approaches. We will rigorously validate and compare band-ratio and multivariate machine learning algorithms. Algorithms validated from this study will be applied to satellite observations to produce a time series of satellite data products

The U.S. Middle Atlantic Bight (MAB), George's Bank (GB) and Gulf of Maine (GoM) stand at the crossroads between major ocean circulation features - the Gulf Stream and Labrador slope-sea and shelf currents - and are influenced by highly variable river discharge, summer upwelling, warm core rings, and intense seasonal stratification. Our work will focus on the impacts of variable river discharge, SST and large-scale climate indices on primary production, and POC and DOC distributions. These processes are not unique to the MAB and GoM. Consequently, the results from this activity can be applied to understanding how inter-annual and long-term variability in climate patterns can impact the carbon cycle of continental margins throughout the globe.

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