Origin of iron and aluminium in large particles (> 53 µm) in the Crozet region, Southern Ocean

H. Planquette, Gary Fones, P. Stratham, P. Morris

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Natural iron fertilization processes are occurring around the Crozet Islands (46°26′S–52°18′E), thus relieving the water masses from the normally encountered High Nutrients Low Chlorophyll (HNLC) conditions of the Southern Ocean. During austral summers 2004/2005 and 2005/2006, iron and aluminium concentrations were investigated in large particles (> 53 µm) collected from just below the mixed layer at stations under the influence of island inputs, and also in adjacent HNLC waters. These large particles are anticipated to sink out of the mixed layer, and to reflect the net effects of input and cycling of these elements in the overlying mixed layer. Labile and refractory fractions were determined by a two-stage leaching technique. Data showed that water masses downstream of the islands were enriched in total iron and aluminium (0.25–2.68 nmol L− 1 and 0.34–3.28 nmol L− 1 respectively), relative to the southern HNLC control sites (0.15–0.29 nmol L− 1 for Fe and 0.12–0.29 nmol L− 1 for Al), with only a small fraction (typically < 1%) being acid leachable in both environments. Particulate iron predominantly derived from the island system represents a significant fraction of the total water column iron inventory and may complement dissolved Fe inputs that help support the high summer productivity around the Crozet islands.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-42
Number of pages12
JournalMarine Chemistry
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2009


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