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Free Content Analysis of diel variability in chlorophyll fluorescence

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Examples of the diel variability in chlorophyll and beam attenuation are presented using data from moored in situ fluorometers and transmissometers, and from profiles of the beam attenuation coefficient and fluorescence. The data are discussed in terms of the three primary processes thought to influence the diel variability in chlorophyll: (1) fluorescence yield per unit chlorophyll a, (2) chlorophyll a changes per cell (or, carbon), and (3) changes in phytoplankton carbon (growth). A simple, provisional, model is presented which incorporates these three biological processes, under the assumption that the corresponding diel variability in particle attenuation represents the change in phytoplankton carbon. The analysis produces qualitative agreement with the in situ data. The model suggests that while under high-light conditions fluorescence declines, chlorophyll can still increase during the day. Under low-light conditions, the diel variability of chlorophyll and fluorescence are in phase. The model is limited by (1) physiological understanding of the processes involved in producing fluorescence and chlorophyll changes over diel time scales; (2) biomass-independent variations in particle attenuation; and (3) not including, for the present, physical forcing.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 1997

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  • The Journal of Marine Research, one of the oldest journals in American marine science, publishes peer-reviewed research articles covering a broad array of topics in physical, biological and chemical oceanography. Articles that deal with processes, as well as those that report significant observations, are welcome. Biological studies involving coupling between ecological and physical processes are preferred over those that report systematics. The editors strive always to serve authors and readers in the academic oceanographic community by publishing papers vital to the marine research in the long and rich tradition of the Sears Foundation for Marine Research. We welcome you to the Journal of Marine Research.
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