Cowles, T. J. Oregon State University, tjc@oce.orst.edu
Desiderio, R. J. Oregon State University, desi@oce.orst.edu
Twardowski, M. S. Oregon State University, mtwardo@oce.orst.edu
Wingard, C. E. Oregon State University, cwingard@oce.orst.edu
Eisner, L. B. Oregon State University, leisner@oce.orst.edu

 
TEMPORAL EVOLUTION IN THE COMPOSITION AND STRUCTURE OF SMALL-SCALE PLANKTONIC LAYERS
 
New approaches to sampling the upper ocean have revealed considerable planktonic structure over vertical scales of 20-50 cm. The detection of persistent small-scale structure raises numerous questions about the time scales of formation, maintenance, and erasure of these planktonic features. We have studied these questions through field experiments in 1997 and 1998 in the open ocean and in East Sound, north of Puget Sound. In each environment we obtained extended time series observations of vertical structure in physical and bio-optical properties along with discrete samples obtained from a free-fall profiling system. We address two specific questions in this paper. To what extent does the structure and composition of small-scale planktonic features change on time scales of hours to days? What are the decorrelation time scales for small-scale features in protected coastal waters compared to open ocean waters? Our analysis integrates physical, bio-optical, and discrete sample data obtained on vertical scales of a few centimeters, including nutrients, DOC, and phytoplankton species composition. These results form part of the ongoing assessment of the importance of the contribution of processes within small-scale planktonic structure to upper ocean processes.
 
Day: Tuesday, Feb. 2
Time: 09:15 - 09:30am
Location: Hilton of Santa Fe
 
Code: SS05TU0915H