Ross Sea NH4+ flux experiment



From January 16 to 24, 1982, 12 ocean scientists from Texas A&M University, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of Texas, University of California at Santa Barbara, and the University of Maryland will carry out an interdisciplinary physical, chemical, and biological study of the southwest Ross Sea, Antarctica. The research, to be fielded aboard USCGC Glacier, will focus on defining austral summertime fine scales of temporal and spatial variability in water column ammonium and their role in promoting and regulating summertime nitrogen-based primary production. Indirect evidence from previous studies has suggested that the Ice Shelf Water (T < −1.8°C) formed as the net result of melting, cooling, and freezing under the Ross Ice Shelf might locally represent a major source of NH4+ to the photic zone of the Ross Sea, particularly in the southwest part of this region where the northward flowing ISW, emerging at the basal edge of the Ross Ice Shelf, is injected near-surface by wind-driven upwelling and/or by overriding the denser High Salinity Shelf Water, which comprises most of the deep water column there.