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Ocean Iron Links

Ocean Iron Links

April 1, 2015

Many areas of the ocean are nutrient-rich, but lack iron, which fuels the growth of phytoplankton, tiny plant-like organisms that form the base of the ocean food chain and play an important role in Earth’s climate. In a recent study, WHOI researchers Tristan Horner (left) and Sune Nielsen—shown here working in the NIRVANA clean room—and their colleagues found that hydrothermal vents and deep-ocean sediments are a major source of dissolved iron in the central Pacific Ocean. The finding highlights the role that ocean mixing plays in determining whether deep sources of iron reach the surface-dwelling life that need it. (Photo by Jayne Doucette, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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