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Layered Organization in the Coastal Ocean: 4-D Assessment of Thin Layer Structure, Dynamics and Impacts

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Our long-term goal is to understand 1 the properties of densely concentrated, thin layers of planktonic biota that can occur in coastal ocean environments, 2 the interacting physical, chemical, biological and optical processes responsible for establishment, maintenance and breakdown of layers, 3 the impact of thin layers on the dynamics of plankton populations and the performance of optical sensors, and 4 how the above vary between coastal systems that differ in physical size, exposure to physical forcing, and susceptibility to episodic events. Our objectives for this LOCO project are 1 to understand the physical, biological, optical, chemical and acoustical properties of vertically thin horizontal layers of biota and biogenic particles in coastal oceans, and the processes responsible for the formation, maintenance and dissipation of layers 2 to understand the spatial coherence and spatial properties of thin layers in the coastal ocean especially in terms of optical properties, as well as the temporal durability of layers, where they occur and 3 to use the information gleaned in the first two objectives along with data from our studies in other coastal systems to test and refine our models of thin layer dynamics and thus continue to develop the ability to predict layer formation and presence in the coastal ocean. Our primary objectives during the past 12 months of this grant have been to 1 process the raw data from the 2005 and 2006 LOCO field experiments into master data files that include all measured and derived parameters, and 2 begin to use the data to address our overall scientific objectives. Our secondary objective was to continue to publish the results of our previous work on thin layers.

Subject Categories:

  • Biological Oceanography
  • Physical and Dynamic Oceanography
  • Marine Engineering
  • Military Forces and Organizations
  • Naval Surface Warfare
  • Undersea and Antisubmarine Warfare

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