What are you measuring?

I will measure stable isotope ratios and concentrations in different biomarkers like fatty acids to quantify phytoplankton and bacteria, in zooplankton, and general carbon pools like particulate and dissolved organic matter in the water column. I’ll also measure material from the sediment traps to investigate sinking of material.

What techniques/instruments are you using?

13C enriched DIC will be added in tracer amounts to be able to study carbon fluxes. I need to collect the material, so I will use a filtering device in Svalbard. I’ll take the filters back to the Netherlands for further analyses.

How frequenctly will you be sampling?

I will take daily samples of the water column and every two or three days I’ll sample the sediment traps and zooplankton.

Why is this work important?

With these samples we hope to get insight in the effect of CO2 on carbon fluxes in natural plankton communities. Higher CO2 levels could lead to enhanced carbon consumption; the extra carbon could be transported to consumers or to the deep ocean. The balance of these processes is of extreme importance, since it determines the carbon uptake capacity of the oceans.

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