RESEARCH: Which nutrient sources fuel carbon fixation and export in the ocean?

Just like the plants growing in your garden, algae, or small plants growing in the surface ocean, need specific nutrients to grow. Plant growth in the ocean can be limited by the availability of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and trace metals such as iron (Fe). When algae lack these nutrients, photosynthesis in the ocean, and thus the transfer of carbon from the atmosphere to the ocean, can be limited. Because of the potential for nitrogen to limit marine photosynthesis, and thus to influence the global carbon cycle, I study the processes that add nitrogen to, remove it from, and cycle it in the ocean.

Recent projects focus on identifying and quantifying the role of subsurface nitrate vs. N2 fixation in support export production, and new work implicates DON may be an important source of nitrogen in nitrate-poor surface waters. Click on a nitrogen source below for more information.

Where do we go?

Click on a region below to find out more about Knapp lab projects in the locations highlighted below:

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