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Authors: Vichi, M.*
Coluccelli, A.*
Ravaioli, M.*
Giglio, F.*
Langone, L.*
Azzaro, M.*
Azzaro, F.*
La Ferla, R.*
Cozzi, S.*
Catalano, G.*
Title: Modelling approach to the assessment of biogenic fluxes at a selected Ross Sea site, Antarctica
Issue Date: 2007
Keywords: Numerical model
Ross Sea
Biogeochemistry model
Abstract: Abstract Several biogeochemical data have been collected in the last 10 years of Italian activity in Antarctica (ABIOCLEAR, ROSSMIZE, BIOSESO-I/II). A comprehensive 1-D biogeochemical model was implemented as a tool to link observations with processes and to investigate the mechanisms that regulate the flux of biogenic material through the water column. The model is ideally located at station B (175^{o}E - 74^{o}S) and was set up to reproduce the seasonal cycle of phytoplankton and organic matter fluxes as forced by the dominant water column physics over the period 1990-2001. Austral spring-summer bloom conditions are assessed by comparing simulated nutrient drawdown, primary production rates, bacterial respiration and biomass with the available observations. The simulated biogenic fluxes of carbon, nitrogen and silica have been compared with the fluxes derived from sediment traps data. The model reproduces quite well the magnitude of the biogenic fluxes, expecially those observed in the bottom sediment trap, but the peaks are delayed in time. Sensitivity experiments have shown that the characterization of detritus, the choice of the sinking velocity and the degradation rates are crucial for the timing and magnitude of the vertical fluxes. An increase of velocity leads to a shift towards observation but also to an overestimation of the deposition flux which can be counteracted by higher bacterial remineralization rates. Model results suggest that observed fluxes could be explained by the size-distribution and quality of the locally-produced biogenic material. It is hypothesized that the bottom sediment trap collects material originated from rapid sinking of particles and also from previous years production periods, likely modulated by advective and aggregation mechanisms which are still not resolved by the model.
Appears in Collections:03.04.01. Biogeochemical cycles
02.04.01. Atmosphere/sea ice/ocean interaction
03.04.02. Carbon cycling
03.04.04. Ecosystems

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