Project Info

Air-Sea Gas Exchange

R/V Knorr. Sensors were mounted on the bow mast (photo by R/V Knorr crew).

2007 R/V Knorr ship tracks on top of a MODIS chlorophyll-a image. (click the image to enlarge)

2006 air-sea cruise track along with NCEP wind vectors. (click the image to enlarge)

Eric Saltzman, UC Irvine
Christa Marandino, UC Irvine
Warren DeBruyn, Chapman University, Orange, CA

We are trying to measure air-sea fluxes of carbon dioxide, dimethylsulfide, and acetone using the eddy covariance technique from ships. These gases are important in terms of their impact on atmospheric chemistry and climate: carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas, dimethylsulfide as a precursor of atmospheric sulfate aerosols, and acetone as a precursor for tropospheric HOx. By simultaneously measuring the air-sea gas flux and the air-sea concentration difference of these gases, we calculate the gas transfer coefficient, or piston velocity. The three gases we measure cover a wide range of solubilities, and our goal is to use their differences to better understand mechanisms controlling air-sea gas exchange. We made 4 cruises on the R/V Knorr (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) totaling 52 days at sea: January 2006 from Manzanillo, Mexico to Puntas Arenas, Chile (21 days); April 2007 from Woods Hole, Massachusetts, to Bridgeport, Barbados (7 days); May 2007 from Barbados to Reykjavik, Iceland (14 days); and July 2007 from Iceland back to Woods Hole, Massachusetts (10 days).

This research supported by the National Science Foundation awards 0426314 (9/04-9/07) and 0851407 (5/09-5/12).

Please refer to the Publications page. Search for the keyphrase "air-sea gas exchange"