Remote sensing, ocean biogeochemistry, and marine primary productivity
Observational datasets relevant for studying marine phytoplankton productivity and biogeochemical cycling in the oceans have expanded greatly in the past decade. New global syntheses of ship-based observations at the global scale provide information on nutrient distributions, carbon chemistry, and phytoplankton community structure. Simultaneously the number of satellite remote sensing observations has also greatly expanded with improved accuracy. Remote sensing observations provide estimates of surface chlorophyll concentrations (phytoplankton biomass), phytoplankton carbon concentrations, and primary production. Satellites also provide a number of observations of physical oceanographic variables such as sea surface temperature, surface salinity, and wind speed and direction over the oceans. In this project the student will analyze some of these datasets to study the controls on primary production, phytoplankton community composition, and the biogeochemical cycling of key elements (i.e. carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus). A better understanding of these factors will allow us to better predict how the oceans will respond to the ongoing climate change.
Project time allocations: Computer lab = 100%