AOML's Ocean Chemistry and Ecosystems Division

Oceanic, Coastal, and Estuarine Ocean Acidification Observing Networks: North Atlantic Ocean, East and Gulf Coast

Rik Wanninkhof and Leticia Barbero

In this project we are developing the North Atlantic Ocean, East and Gulf Coast ocean acidification (OA) observing system in response to the requirements of the Federal Ocean Acidification Research and Monitoring (FOARAM) Act. The observing system will be used to determine patterns and trends in key geochemical indicators of ocean acidification. The observing network of the East and Gulf Coast is based on the following elements:

  • Surface water measurements using autonomous systems on six ships of opportunity (SOOP-CO2).
  • Dedicated Gulf of Mexico and East Coast Carbon (GOMECC) cruises with surface and subsurface measurements on the NOAA ship Ronald H Brown. This will improve process level understanding of the controls on ocean acidification.
  • Moorings with autonomous instruments to determine the rapid temporal changes and causes thereof.
  • The continued development of the observing system with new instrumentation and protocols.

AOML leads the SOOP-CO2 effort, and the dedicated research cruises along the East and Gulf Coast. PMEL and academic partners maintain three moorings that are an integral part of the effort. The scientific component includes analysis of total alkalinity (TA) and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) samples taken on the SOOP and mooring efforts. Data reduction, quality control and data management of the large data sets are a critical component of the observing system. Data products and algorithms to extrapolate the OA indices in time and space will be developed as part of the effort.