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Proceedings Paper

Satellite observations of Saharan dust events in the Mediterranean and its effect on surface phytoplankton biomass
Author(s): Gianluca Volpe; R. Sciarra; G. Liberti; Fabrizio D'Ortenzio; Rosalia Santoleri; A. Papadopopulos; P. Katsafados; G. Kallos
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Paper Abstract

Many studies indicate that the atmosphere is a significant and in some cases the dominant pathway by which specific elements are transported from the land to the open sea. The Mediterranean Sea is a semi-enclosed basin, that continuously receives anthropogenic substances from the industrialized European country, and sporadically, from the arid region of the Sahara desert, nearly the 90% of the total amount of aerosols that reach the sea surface. The Mediterranean is a predominantly oligotrophic basin with areas of high productivity limited to areas influenced by runoff, rivers or upwelling. In situ biogeochemical measurements indicate that atmospheric deposition can induce significant productivity changes. The present work aims to use SeaWiFS satellite data and the SKIRON atmospheric model to provide an estimate of the temporal and spatial variability in the atmospheric forcing (dust events) and in the marine biological response (blooms), and to evaluate the overall contribution of these Saharan dust events to the fertility of the Mediterranean Sea. Although biological dynamic is meanly driven by the circulation features of the basin, results show that the atmospheric nutrient deposition gives some evident response in the biological activity.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 February 2003
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4880, Remote Sensing of the Ocean and Sea Ice 2002, (14 February 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.465158
Show Author Affiliations
Gianluca Volpe, Istituto per le Scienze dell'Atmosfera e del Clima (Italy)
R. Sciarra, Istituto per le Scienze dell'Atmosfera e del Clima (Italy)
G. Liberti, Istituto per le Scienze dell'Atmosfera e del Clima (Italy)
Fabrizio D'Ortenzio, Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn (Italy)
Rosalia Santoleri, Istituto per le Scienze dell'Atmosfera e del Clima (Italy)
A. Papadopopulos, Univ. of Athens (Greece)
National Ctr. for Marine Research (Greece)
P. Katsafados, Univ. of Athens (Greece)
G. Kallos, Univ. of Athens (Greece)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4880:
Remote Sensing of the Ocean and Sea Ice 2002
Charles R. Bostater; Rosalia Santoleri, Editor(s)

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