Dataset: nutrients_NBP
Deployment: NBP0103

Nutrient data for the NB Palmer 2001-2002 cruises
Principal Investigator: 
Kent Fanning (University of South Florida, USF)
BCO-DMO Data Manager: 
Ms Dicky Allison (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, WHOI BCO-DMO)
Deployment Synonyms:
Coordinated Deployments:

Nutrients from Bottle Casts



Analytical methods used for silica, phosphate, nitrite, and nitrate follow the recommendations of Gordon et al. (1993) for the WOCE WHP project.

The analytical system we employ is a five-channel Technicon Autoanalyzer II upgraded with new heating baths, proportional pumps, colorimeters, improved optics, and an analog to digital conversion system (New Analyzer Program v. 2.40 by Labtronics, Inc.) This Technicon is designed for shipboard as well as laboratory use.

Silica is determined by forming the heteropoly acid of dissolved orthosilicic acid and ammonium molybdate, reducing it with stannous chloride, and then measuring its optical transmittance.

Phosphate is determined by creating the phosphomolybdate heteropoly acid in much the same way as with the silica method. However, its reducing agent is dihydrazine sulfate, after which its transmittance is also measured. A heating bath is required to maximize the color yield.

Nitrite is determined essentially by the Bendschneider and Robinson (1952) technique in which nitrite is reacted with sulfanilamide (SAN) to form a diazotized derivative that is then reacted with a substituted ethylenediamine compound (NED) to form a rose pink azo dye which is measured colorimetrically.

Nitrate is determined by difference after a separate aliquot of a sample is passed through a Cd reduction column to convert its nitrate to nitrite, followed by the measurement of the "augmented" nitrite concentration using the same method as in the nitrite analysis.

In the analytical ammonia method, ammonium reacts with alkaline phenol and hypochlorite to form indophenolblue. Sodium nitroferricyanide intensifies the blue color formed, which is then measured in a colorimeter of our nutrient-analyzer. Precipitation of calcium and magnesium hydroxides is eliminated by the addition of sodium citrate complexing reagent. A heating bath is required. Our version of this technique is based on modifications of published methods such as the article by F. Koroleff in Grasshoff (1976). These modifications were made at Alpkem (now Astoria-Pacific International, Inc.) and at L.Gordon's nutrient laboratory at Oregon State University.


Nitrate, nitrite, phosphate, ammonia, and silica were measured from every niskin bottle tripped from all hydrocasts on this cruise. All concentrations are reported in micromoles per liter.


Gordon, L.I., J.C. Jennings, Jr., A.A. Ross, and J.M. Krest, A Suggested Protocol For Continuous Flow Automated Analysis of Seawater Nutrients, in WOCE Operation Manual, WHP Office Report 90-1, WOCE Report 77 No. 68/91, 1-52, 1993.

Grasshoff, K. 1976. Methods of Seawater Analysis, Verlag Chemie, Weinheim, Germany, and New York, NY, 317 pp.


Data Contributed By:
Kent Fanning
Dept. of Marine Science
University of South Florida
140 Seventh Avenue, South
St. Petersburg, FL 33701

phone: 727 553 1594

Last updated January 13, 2006; gfh

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