Optical Variability

Sources and magnitude of variability of optically active constituents

The range of optically active constituents found in seawater are traditionally grouped in broad categories as: phytoplankton, non-algal particles (organic and inorganic) and CDOM. The degree of optical variability within these categories is generally poorly understood, strongly influenced by measurement errors and has huge potential impact on strategies for modelling underwater lightfields and interpreting OCRS signals.  We are working on a strongly physics-based approach to this issue, trying to clearly establish the influence of measurement uncertainties and true natural variability in the optical properties of OACs. This includes a recently funded NERC standard grant to look at the influence of particle size distribution and aggregation processes on measured IOPs. See the new project website for more info: http://marinephysics.org/submicron

Collaborators on this work:

Dr Dave BowersUniversity of Bangor
Dr Alex Nimmo-SmithUniversity of Plymouth
Dr Malik Chami and Dr David DoxaranLaboratoire d’Oceanographie de Villefranche, France
Dr Rudiger RottgersHZG, Germany
Dr Chuck Trees and Dr Violeta Sanjuan CalzadoNURC, Italy
Griet NeukermannMUMM, Belgium
Prof Hubert LoiselUniversité du Littoral Côte d’Opale, France
Stations from BP09 cruise in the Ligurian Sea on board R.V. Alliance. Data from this cruise are being used to assess the impact of measurement uncertainties on specific inherent optical properties.