Search the Community
Showing results for tags 'phytoplankton'.
Found 1 result
The Ocean's Living Carbon Pumps October 23, 2014 Satellite image showing a patch of bright waters associated with a bloom of phytoplankton in the Barents Sea off Norway. Image courtesy of Norman Kuring, Ocean Color Group at Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA. "When we talk about global carbon fixation -"pumping" carbon out of the atmosphere and fixing it into organic molecules by photosynthesis - proper measurement is key to understanding this process. By some estimates, almost half of the world's organic carbon is fixed by marine organisms called phytoplankton - single-celled photosynthetic organisms that account for less than one percent of the total photosynthetic biomass on Earth. Dr. Assaf Vardi, a marine microbiologist in the Weizmann Institute's Plant and Environmental Sciences Department, and Prof. Ilan Koren, a cloud physicist, and Dr. Yoav Lehahn, an oceanographer, both from the Earth and Planetary Sciences Department, realized that by combining their interests, they might be able to start uncovering the role that these minuscule organisms play in regulating the carbon content of the atmosphere. Tiny as they are, phytoplankton can be seen from space: They multiply in blooms that can reach thousands of kilometers in area, coloring patches of the ocean that can be tracked and measured by satellites." snip http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/The_Oceans_Living_Carbon_Pumps_999.html