eCite Digital Repository

Localizing the Southern Ocean biogeochemical divide


Xie, Y and Tamsitt, V and Bach, LT, Localizing the Southern Ocean biogeochemical divide, Geophysical Research Letters, 49, (8) Article e2022GL098260. ISSN 0094-8276 (2022) [Refereed Article]

PDF (Published version)

Copyright Statement

2022. The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0), License (, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

DOI: doi:10.1029/2022GL098260


The meridional overturning circulation consists of an upper and lower cell. The Southern Ocean Biogeochemical Divide (SOBD) is the boundary between the two cells in the surface of the Southern Ocean, but its location is poorly constrained. Localizing the SOBD is important because biological nutrient utilization north and south of the SOBD have fundamentally different consequences for global ocean primary production and carbon sequestration. Here, we aim to localize the SOBD by releasing virtual Lagrangian particles south of 40S in an eddying ocean sea-ice model and compare simulation results with observations. We find that the SOBD is a circumpolar band, where different sectors are shaped by different oceanographic features: (a) Ekman transport, (b) the γ=27.6kg m−3 neutral density outcrop, and (c) fronts associated with the Antarctic Circumpolar Current. Our findings help to understand how nutrient utilization in different parts of the Southern Ocean affects the biologically driven carbon sequestration.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:ocean iron fertilisation, CO2 removal, geoengineering, marine primary production
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical oceanography
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Air quality, atmosphere and weather
Objective Field:Atmospheric composition (incl. greenhouse gas inventory)
UTAS Author:Xie, Y (Mr Yinghuan Xie)
UTAS Author:Bach, LT (Dr Lennart Bach)
ID Code:155106
Year Published:2022
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (FT200100846)
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2023-01-30
Last Modified:2023-03-16
Downloads:1 View Download Statistics

Repository Staff Only: item control page