How widespread and important is N2 fixation in the North Atlantic Ocean?.

Reynolds, S. E., Mather, R. L., Wolff, G. A., Williams, R. G., Landolfi, Angela , Sanders, R. and Woodward, E. M. S. (2007) How widespread and important is N2 fixation in the North Atlantic Ocean?. Open Access Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 21 . GB4015. DOI 10.1029/2006GB002886.

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The spatial extent of N2 fixation in the Atlantic Ocean is examined by determining the isotopic composition of N in suspended particulate organic nitrogen (δ15N PONsusp). The samples were collected from zonal and meridional transects of the Atlantic Ocean during a 3‐year period. There is a consistent depleted δ15N PONsusp signal extending over the center of the northern subtropical gyre, which partly coincides with a region where the tracer N* increases westward following the gyre circulation. This nonconservative behavior of N* implies that N2 fixation is responsible for the depleted δ15N PONsusp. A mixing model suggests that N2 fixation over parts of the northern gyre provides up to 74% of the N utilized by phytoplankton. However, since the PONsusp represents only a small fraction of the total N pool, N2 fixation probably only plays a minor role in supplying new N to the euphotic zone in the surface waters of the northern subtropical gyre.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: N2 fixation, North Atlantic Ocean
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB2 Marine Biogeochemistry > FB2-BM Biogeochemical Modeling
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1029/2006GB002886
ISSN: 0886-6236
Projects: Future Ocean
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2008 16:51
Last Modified: 21 Mar 2018 08:00

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