Deployment: TI668

Chief Scientist: 
Zhaohui Aleck Wang (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, WHOI)
Co-Chief Scientist: 
Gareth Lawson (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, WHOI)
Amy Maas (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, WHOI)
Amy Maas (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, WHOI)
Platform Type:
Start Date: 
End Date: 
Wilkinson Basin, Gulf of Maine, full water-column

The central goal of this cruise was to sample the carbonate chemistry profile of two sites in the GoME and to document the abundance and vertical distribution of the pteropod species Limacina retroversa.

The long-term goal of this research is to understand forcings by climate, enhanced atmospheric CO2 levels, and coastal eutrophication on seasonal and inter-annual variability in carbonate chemistry of the Gulf of Maine and the associated implications to planktonic calcifiers, notably pteropods. The specific goals of this project are to:
1. Quantify seasonal variations of carbonate system parameters and buffer intensity in deep waters of the Gulf of Maine in order to evaluate the sensitivity of these waters in response to acidification due to anthropogenic forcing, such as increase in atmospheric CO2, freshening of the GoME (decrease in total alkalinity) and increases in water-column respiration due to eutrophication. We will test the hypotheses that deep waters of the GoME are already seasonally under-saturated with respect to aragonite saturation state, and that these waters have low buffer intensity compared to overlying water, which would cause them to be more susceptible to acidification pressures and to reach critical ecological thresholds (OA < 1) more readily.
2. Quantify seasonal patterns in the abundance of the pteropod Limacina retroversa and its vertical distribution relative to concurrent measurements of water column chemical properties, testing the hypothesis that this species is absent in the acidic waters of the near-bottom nepheloid layer.

The specific goals of this particular cruise were to:
1. Measure the carbonate chemistry of the water column at multiple sites in the Gulf of Maine, targeting regions where there the depth is greatest and the deep waters are mostly likely to be undersaturated
2. Measure the carbonate chemistry in the nephloid layer
3. Catch pteropods with a vertically stratified net system to quantify their size class, abundance and vertical distribution in the context of the carbonate chemistry.
4. Collect surface water and pteropods to test out methods for shell (70% ethanol), physiology (live) and gene expression studies (RNAlater).

DMO NOTE: Revised cruise report with updated eventlog submitted 20 Dec. 2013.