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Carbon cycling dynamics in the seasonal sea-ice zone of East Antarctica

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-19, 01:51 authored by Roden, NP, Tilbrook, B, Trull, TW, Patti VirtuePatti Virtue, Guy Williams
The carbon cycle of the seasonally ice covered region of the southwest Indian Ocean sector of East Antarctica (30°–80°E, 60°–69°S) was investigated during austral summer (January–March 2006). Large variability in the drivers and timing of carbon cycling dynamics were observed and indicated that the study site was a weak net source of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere of 0.8 ± 1.6 g C m−2 during the ice-free period, with narrow bands of CO2 uptake observed near the continental margin and north of the Southern Antarctic Circumpolar Current Front. Continuous surface measurements of dissolved oxygen and the fugacity of CO2 were combined with net community production estimates from oxygen/argon ratios to show that surface heat gain and photosynthesis were responsible for the majority of observed surface water variability. On seasonal timescales, winter sea-ice cover reduced the flux of CO2 to the atmosphere in the study area, followed by biologically driven drawdown of CO2 as the ice retreated in spring-summer highlighting the important role that sea-ice formation and retreat has on the biogeochemical cycling of the region.


Publication title

Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans










Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.

Place of publication

United States

Rights statement

Copyright 2016 American Geophysical Union

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Biodiversity in Antarctic and Southern Ocean environments

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