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© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 09 Jul 2018

Research article | 09 Jul 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of the manuscript is under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).

Parameterization of the spectral light absorption coefficient of phytoplankton in the Baltic Sea: general, monthly and two-component variants of approximation formulas

Justyna Meler1, Sławomir B. Woźniak1, Joanna Stoń-Egiert1, and Bogdan Woźniak1,† Justyna Meler et al.
  • 1Institute of Oceanology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Powstańców Warszawy 55, 81-712 Sopot, Poland
  • deceased

Abstract. The paper presents approximate formulas for parameterizing the coefficient of light absorption by phytoplankton aph(λ) in Baltic Sea surface waters. Over a thousand absorption spectra (in the 350–750nm range), recorded during nine years of research carried out in different months of the year and in various regions of the southern and central Baltic, were used to derive these parameterizations. The analysed empirical material was characterized by a wide range of variability: the total chlorophyll a concentration (Tchla) varied between 0.3 and >140mgm−3, the ratio of the sum of all accessory pigment concentrations to chlorophyll a (ΣCi/Tchla) varied between 0.21 and 1.5, and the absorption coefficients aph(λ) at individual light wavelengths varied over almost three orders of magnitude. Different versions of the parameterization formulas were derived on the basis of the data gathered: a one-component parameterization in the classic form of a power function with Tchla as the only variable, and a two-component formula – the product of the power and exponential functions, with Tchla and ΣCi/Tchla as variables. There were distinct differences between the general version of the one-component parameterization and its variants developed for individual months of the year. In contrast to the general parameterization, both the monthly and the two-component variants enable, at least partially, the variability of pigment composition occurring throughout the year in the Baltic phytoplankton populations examined here to be taken into account.

Justyna Meler et al.
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Justyna Meler et al.
Justyna Meler et al.
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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
In our manuscript, new versions of simplified mathematical description (parameterization) of light absorption coefficients by phytoplankton suspended in surface layer of the Baltic Sea in relation to chlorophyll a concentration and concentration of accessory pigments are presented. The practical value of the simple parameterizations presented in this work should be seen in the opportunities for applying them to the development of remote sensing methods.
In our manuscript, new versions of simplified mathematical description (parameterization) of...