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Nutrient distribution in East Antarctic summer sea ice: a potential iron contribution from glacial basal melt


Duprat, L and Corkill, M and Genovese, C and Townsend, AT and Moreau, S and Meiners, KM and Lannuzel, D, Nutrient distribution in East Antarctic summer sea ice: a potential iron contribution from glacial basal melt, JGR Oceans, 125, (12) Article e2020JC016130. ISSN 2169-9275 (2020) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2020 The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

DOI: doi:10.1029/2020JC016130


Antarctic sea ice can incorporate high levels of iron (Fe) during its formation and has been suggested as an important source of this essential micronutrient to Southern Ocean surface waters during the melt season. Over the last decade, a limited number of studies have quantified the Fe pool in Antarctic sea ice, with a focus on late winter and spring. Here we study the distribution of operationally defined dissolved and particulate Fe from nine sites sampled between Wilkes Land and King George V Land during austral summer 2016/2017. Results point toward a net heterotrophic sea‐ice community, consistent with the observed nitrate limitation (<1 μM). We postulate that the recycling of the high particulate Fe pool in summer sea ice supplies sufficient (∼3 nM) levels of dissolved Fe to sustain ice algal growth. The remineralization of particulate Fe is likely favored by high concentrations of exopolysaccharides (113–16,290 μg xeq L−1) which can serve as a hotspot for bacterial activity. Finally, results indicate a potential relationship between glacial meltwater discharged from the Moscow University Ice Shelf and the occurrence of Fe‐rich (∼4.3 μM) platelet ice in its vicinity. As climate change is expected to result in enhanced Fe‐rich glacial discharge and changes in summer sea‐ice extent and quality, the processes influencing Fe distribution in sea ice that persists into summer need to be better constrained.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:sea ice, iron, biogeochemistry, Antarctica
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Management of Antarctic and Southern Ocean environments
Objective Field:Antarctic and Southern Ocean oceanic processes
UTAS Author:Duprat, L (Mr Duprat)
UTAS Author:Corkill, M (Mr Matthew Corkill)
UTAS Author:Genovese, C (Miss Cristina Genovese)
UTAS Author:Townsend, AT (Associate Professor Ashley Townsend)
UTAS Author:Meiners, KM (Dr Klaus Meiners)
UTAS Author:Lannuzel, D (Associate Professor Delphine Lannuzel)
ID Code:142657
Year Published:2020
Web of Science® Times Cited:10
Deposited By:Oceans and Cryosphere
Deposited On:2021-02-04
Last Modified:2022-08-29
Downloads:16 View Download Statistics

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