University of Oviedo, Biology of Organisms and Systems departament
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The dataset comprises physical, biogeochemical and biological measurements from the Southern Ocean. The data were collected in the Bransfield and Gerlache Straits and Bellingshausen Sea between 1995 and 1996. Hydrographic casts provided profiles of temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, transmittance, chlorophyll and photosynthetically active radiation, while water samples were analysed for bacteria, zooplankton and a biogeochemical parameters such as nutrient concentrations. Sediment cores were also analysed for nutrients, while drifting traps provided sedimentation flux measurements and shipboard experiments yielded production data. The majority of measurements were collected during two consecutive cruises of the BIO Hesperides between early December 1995 and early February 1996. The hydrographic profiles were collected using a CTD and the data were stored as approximately 300 individual ASCII files per cruise, with data stored at 1dbar resolution. Several hundred discrete measurements (water samples and sediment cores) were collected in total. An array of moorings deployed for one year in the Western Bransfield Strait Basin provided sediment trap samples for biological and biogeochemical analysis. The FRUELA project was part of the Spanish contribution to the study of biogeochemical carbon fluxes in the Southern Ocean. Three major zones, with contrasting physico-chemical and biological characteristics were considered: Bellingshausen, including the Northwest Bellingshausen Sea and comprising the southern boundary of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (SbyACC); Bransfield, including the Western Bransfield Strait and the northeastern part of the Gerlache Strait; and Gerlache, including the rest of the Gerlache Strait. The research involved a number of Spanish institutions and was coordinated by the University of Oviedo and the Institute of Marine Sciences (CSIC). The data are held by the British Oceanographic Data Centre.
The data set comprises a diverse collection of physical, chemical and biological measurements, encompassing well over 1000 parameters. There are data from over 1000 conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD)/rosette stations, over 440 core profiles, over 180 sediment trap samples, over 140 net hauls and much, much more. The primary study area was a box extending to the base of the slope from Vigo to Cap Finistere. However, data are included from both further offshore (filament tracking) and from the Portuguese Margin. Measurements were taken from November 1996 to October 1999 during 33 cruise legs, involving research vessels from seven nations. Data were collected using a variety of equipment and techniques, including expendable bathythermographs (XBTs), turbulence probes, CTDs and oceanographic undulators with auxiliary sensors. These hydrographic profiles were accompanied by net hauls, plankton recorder deployments, sediment cores and a comprehensive water sampling programmes during which a wide variety of chemical and biological parameters were measured. The station data were supplemented by underway measurements of oceanographic and meteorological properties. Results from production and phosphate uptake experiments are also included in the dataset, as are bathymetric data from multibeam (swath) surveys, coastal upwelling measurements and data from moored instruments and benthic landers. The dataset also includes imagery from satellites, seabed photography and X-ray photographs of core samples. The aim of the project was study biogeochemical processes at the shelf break and to quantify the fluxes of material between the shelf and the open ocean. The project brought together over 100 scientists from 40 research centres and universities throughout Europe. The British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC) is assembling the data sets collected during OMEX II into its project database system and the data set is also available on CD-ROM.