Ocean Sci. Discuss., 7, 1017-1057, 2010
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in OS.
Suspended particles in the Canada Basin from optical and bottle data, 2003–2008
J. M. Jackson1, S. E. Allen1, E. C. Carmack2, and F. A. McLaughlin2
1Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of British Columbia, 6339 Stores Rd, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada
2Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Institute of Ocean Sciences, P.O. Box 6000, Sidney, British Columbia, V8L 4B2, Canada

Abstract. It is expected that coastal erosion, upwelling and increased river runoff from Arctic warming will increase the concentration of suspended particles in the Arctic Ocean. Here we analyze in situ transmissometer and fluorometer data from the summers of 2003 through 2008 and bottle-derived particulate organic carbon (POC) and total suspended solids (TSS) measurements sampled in the summers of 2006 and 2007 from the Canada Basin and surrounding shelves. By coupling these data sets, we explored the correlation of POC with beam attenuation coefficients to assess the viability of estimating POC concentrations from archived transmissometer data. We divided our study area into five regions to account for the significant spatial variability and found that POC (but not TSS) and attenuation were well-correlated over the Northwind Ridge, in the Canada Basin interior, and along the eastern shelf of the Canada Basin. We then estimated POC from attenuation for these regions and found that the average POC ranged from 16 to 37 μg C kg−1 within the upper 50 m and from 14 to 23 μg C kg−1 from 50–100 m. The strength of the chlorophyll maximum appeared to dominate the average POC values. In general, the eastern shelf was the least productive region in our study area. Neither TSS nor POC were well-correlated along the entire Beaufort shelf. Our interannual comparison from the summers of 2003 through 2008 found no evidence of increased particle concentrations over the Northwind Ridge, in the Canada Basin interior, or along the eastern shelf, however, this work provides a baseline of suspended POC concentrations.

Citation: Jackson, J. M., Allen, S. E., Carmack, E. C., and McLaughlin, F. A.: Suspended particles in the Canada Basin from optical and bottle data, 2003–2008, Ocean Sci. Discuss., 7, 1017-1057, doi:10.5194/osd-7-1017-2010, 2010.
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