ADNET Scientists Analyze Micronesian Phytoplankton

September 28, 2022

Cover of Earth journal issue featuring Phytoplankton Bloom analysis

ADNET scientists Jim Acker and Alexis Hunzinger recently authored a study that was featured on the cover of the journal Earth. In October 2013, ocean color remote sensing data acquired by the Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite showed a unique elevated phytoplankton chlorophyll feature extending eastward from Chuuk Lagoon in the Federated States of Micronesia. Analysis of Modern-Era Retrospective analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA-2) windspeed and wind direction data, enabled with the NASA Giovanni system, indicated that alternating high and low windspeed periods, combined with seasonal wind directions and the physiography of the atoll, likely created ideal surface ocean conditions for a phytoplankton bloom in and adjacent to the lagoon. Light availability for photosynthesis may also have contributed to bloom timing and development.

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