Oceanographic cruises have been conducted on the Condor seamount (SW Faial Island, Azores archipelago, NE Atlantic) since 2009 to collect in situ data and understand potential seamount effects on local biodiversity. Satellite data have been concurrently collected to infer the space-time upper-ocean optical property variability and the associated physical processes. The main limitation of this analysis is the persistent and significant cloud coverage above the region that, especially in some seasons, can significantly hinder satellite data availability. This study was meant to test the robust satellite technique (RST) over the Condor seamount, assess its capability to estimate multiyear trends and identify space-time anomalies. To this aim, 11-year MODIS/AQUA level 2-derived chlorophyll-a (chl-a) data were used. Results achieved for October 2010 show, within a large-scale analysis, the presence of well-defined areas of near-surface chl-a anomalies, highlighting the occurrence of a trapping effect due to flow-topography interaction processes. Regarding the Condor area, the chl-a anomalies detected along the eastern side of the seamount were linked to a strong vertical mixing that provided sufficient inorganic nutrients requested for productivity. The achieved results, whose accuracy was also tested through a comparison with in situ data, are consistent with those independently obtained by other authors who described the phytoplankton variability around the Condor seamount. This study shows the high potential of the RST approach to assess the chl-a variability in the space-time domain in oligotrophic regions such as the Azores, allowing the identification of the most important areas to be preserved and/or managed.

On the potential of an RST-based analysis of the MODIS-derived chl-a product over Condor seamount and surrounding areas (Azores, NE Atlantic)

CIANCIA, EMANUELE;COVIELLO, IRINA;DI POLITO, CARMINE;LACAVA, TEODOSIO;PERGOLA, Nicola;SATRIANO, VALERIA;TRAMUTOLI, Valerio;
2016

Abstract

Oceanographic cruises have been conducted on the Condor seamount (SW Faial Island, Azores archipelago, NE Atlantic) since 2009 to collect in situ data and understand potential seamount effects on local biodiversity. Satellite data have been concurrently collected to infer the space-time upper-ocean optical property variability and the associated physical processes. The main limitation of this analysis is the persistent and significant cloud coverage above the region that, especially in some seasons, can significantly hinder satellite data availability. This study was meant to test the robust satellite technique (RST) over the Condor seamount, assess its capability to estimate multiyear trends and identify space-time anomalies. To this aim, 11-year MODIS/AQUA level 2-derived chlorophyll-a (chl-a) data were used. Results achieved for October 2010 show, within a large-scale analysis, the presence of well-defined areas of near-surface chl-a anomalies, highlighting the occurrence of a trapping effect due to flow-topography interaction processes. Regarding the Condor area, the chl-a anomalies detected along the eastern side of the seamount were linked to a strong vertical mixing that provided sufficient inorganic nutrients requested for productivity. The achieved results, whose accuracy was also tested through a comparison with in situ data, are consistent with those independently obtained by other authors who described the phytoplankton variability around the Condor seamount. This study shows the high potential of the RST approach to assess the chl-a variability in the space-time domain in oligotrophic regions such as the Azores, allowing the identification of the most important areas to be preserved and/or managed.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11563/122451
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