Contrasting seasonality in optical-biogeochemical properties of the Baltic Sea

Simis, SGH, Ylöstalo, P, Kallio, KY, Spilling, K and Kutser, T 2017 Contrasting seasonality in optical-biogeochemical properties of the Baltic Sea. PLOS ONE, 12 (4). e0173357.

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Optical-biogeochemical relationships of particulate and dissolved organic matter are presented in support of remote sensing of the Baltic Sea pelagic. This system exhibits strong seasonality in phytoplankton community composition and wide gradients of chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM), properties which are poorly handled by existing remote sensing algorithms. Absorption and scattering properties of particulate matter reflected the seasonality in biological (phytoplankton succession) and physical (thermal stratification) processes. Inherent optical properties showed much wider variability when normalized to the chlorophyll-a concentration compared to normalization to either total suspended matter dry weight or particulate organic carbon. The particle population had the largest optical variability in summer and was dominated by organic matter in both seasons. The geographic variability of CDOM and relationships with dissolved organic carbon (DOC) are also presented. CDOM dominated light absorption at blue wavelengths, contributing 81% (median) of the absorption by all water constituents at 400 nm and 63% at 442 nm. Consequentially, 90% of water-leaving radiance at 412 nm originated from a layer (z90) no deeper than approximately 1.0 m. With water increasingly attenuating light at longer wavelengths, a green peak in light penetration and reflectance is always present in these waters, with z90 up to 3.0–3.5 m depth, whereas z90 only exceeds 5 m at biomass < 5 mg Chla m-3. High absorption combined with a weakly scattering particle population (despite median phytoplankton biomass of 14.1 and 4.3 mg Chla m-3 in spring and summer samples, respectively), characterize this sea as a dark water body for which dedicated or exceptionally robust remote sensing techniques are required. Seasonal and regional optical-biogeochemical models, data distributions, and an extensive set of simulated remote-sensing reflectance spectra for testing of remote sensing algorithms are provided as supplementary data.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Subjects: Earth Observation - Remote Sensing
Divisions: Plymouth Marine Laboratory > Science Areas > Sea from Space (expired)
Depositing User: Dr Stefan Simis
Date made live: 15 May 2017 15:50
Last Modified: 25 Apr 2020 09:58

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