Process studies on the ecosystem of the Southern Ocean


Process studies on the ecosystem of the Southern Ocean
Pre-Symposium Workshop -12-July-2015
Process studies on the ecosystem of the Southern Ocean
The Southern Ocean (SO) being the key link between the world’s ocean basins as well as between the
major water masses of the global ocean circulation, plays a major role in the global carbon
sequestration and cycling, thereby strongly influences global climate patterns. The convergence of
conspicuously different water masses in this region covers well defined fronts resulting in the
redistribution of physico-chemical components and forming sharp gradients. Eddies in SO formed due
to the mixing of warm, saline Subtropical waters and cold, moderately fresh Subantarctic waters
perhaps play a role in the southward and northward transport of water masses and influence the heat
flux. Seasonality and extent of sea-ice formation are observed to influence primary production and
associated biogeochemical processes, whereas changes in community structures identified in the
previous investigations can result in varying physiological responses and production rates to
environmental settings. Moreover, relative contribution of various components of trophic dynamics
(phytoplankton, bacterioplankton, microzooplankton and mesozooplankton) across various fronts may
influence the quality and net carbon fluxes (air-sea and across trophic levels) in these waters. Such
spatial trends lead to the formation of sinks and sources of atmospheric carbon within the Antarctic
Circumpolar Current. Research in SO is being carried out by various countries globally but within Asia,
the research is limited to few selected countries. Recent meetings of SO researchers have highlighted
the need for increased scientific interactions between countries for improved scientific awareness,
discussions to identify common scientific grounds and develop new topics for future research to address
some of the key issues identified by SCAR/SCOR/SOOS. To address these issues, half-day scientific
workshop is proposed with the following agenda:
Questions to be addressed
1. Role of stratification in regulating the biogeochemical cycle of the Southern Ocean?
2. How the sea-ice/melt water dynamics influence on photosynthetic variability and carbon
sequestration in the SO? Can we use water column optical properties to trace the spreading of
melt water and its implications on photosynthesis and distribution of plankton community?
3. Does recent climate change triggers saturation of the Southern Ocean CO2 sink? OR Response of
Southern Ocean processes to Global Climate Change.
4. Potential impacts of future ocean acidification on Southern Ocean ecosystem processes (food
web) and biogeochemistry.
5. How will the key species at various levels of food web respond to shifts in frontal dynamics and
warming of SO?
6. Impact of biophysical coupling on "distribution of plankton community" and "magnitude of
production" in the SO.
Dr N Anilkumar, Scientist-E, NCAOR (email: [email protected])
Dr Sarat Chandra Tripathy – Scientist-D – NCAOR (email: [email protected])
Dr P V Bhaskar – Scientist-C-NCAOR (email: [email protected])
Interested participants should contact : Dr N Anilkumar (email: [email protected]);Not later than 01June-2015.
For participation in Workshop, you would also need to register for XII-ISAES on the webpage