The Time-Series

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Additional CARIACO Resources: Data


The Bermuda Atlantic Time-series Study (BATS, 32º10'N, 64º30'W) was established in 1988 to study the ocean carbon cycle by analyzing important hydrographic and biological parameters throughout the water column. BATS complements the other Sargasso Sea time-series, the Ocean Flux Program (OFP) a deep sediment trap mooring in place since 1978, and Hydrostation "S" a hydrographic time-series sampled approximately biweekly since 1954.   Currently, BATS makes monthly measurements of important hydrographic, biological and chemical parameters throughout the water column at different sites within the Sargasso Sea. A primary focus of the BATS program is to improve our understanding of the “time-varying” components of the ocean carbon cycle, related biogenic elements of interest (e.g., nitrogen, phosphorus, silica), and identifying the relevant physical, chemical and ecosystem properties responsible for this variability.

Since October 1988, the Hawaii Ocean Time-series (HOT) has conducted systematic and sustained biogeochemical and physical oceanographic measurements at the deep-ocean site, Station ALOHA (A Long-Term Oligotrophic Habitat Assessment; 22° 45'N, 158° 00'W), located 100 km north of Oahu, Hawaii. HOT occupies Station ALOHA on approximately a monthly basis, evaluating variability in hydrography, chemistry and biology of the central Pacific Ocean.  A central goal of the program is to provide a comprehensive description of the temporal dynamics associated with biogeochemistry and ocean-climate in the North Pacific subtropical gyre.

The Carbon Retention in a Colored Ocean Time Series (CARIACO) is located in the southeastern Caribbean Sea, off the coast of Venezuelan (10° 30'N, 64° 40'W). The time series station has been visited by ship once per month since November 1995 and has a sediment trap mooring. The primary goal of CARIACO is to help understand past and present climate change by studying the relationship between hydrography, primary production, terrigenous inputs, element cycling in the water column, and sediment fluxes and accumulation in a region affected alternatingly by coastal wind-driven upwelling and riverine discharge. The region has high primary production and vertical particulate organic matter flux relative to mid-ocean waters, and the water column is anoxic below about 250 m.  The CARIACO sediment contain well-preserved climate signals that represent change in the Atlantic Ocean, and these sediments are used to calibrate the chronology of other climate records such as the Greenland ice cores.

Individually, these three time series have been used to examine processes that occur in each of their geographic domains. Together, they have the potential to provide information on interannual to decadal-scale variability in global ocean processes and the climate system.


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Last updated March 24, 2010
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