Zinc (Zn) is an essential micronutrient for phytoplankton and plays a key role in the productivity of the oceans. Despite the importance of this element, the processes which govern its cycling in the ocean are poorly understood. Thanks to GEOTRACES, an unprecedentedly large volume of data has been reported, revealing fascinating results published in four recent papers.
Click on the links below to access science highlights about these papers:
- Copper and zinc oceanic mass balance revisited (Little et al., 2014; see references below)
- What does the largest data set of zinc concentration ever reported tell us? (Wyatt et al., 2014)
- Sinking organic matter: a major driver of the oceanic zinc cycle? (John and Conway, 2014)
- First full depth profiles of zinc isotopes in the ocean, thanks to IPY/GEOTRACES (GIPY5) cruise (Zhao et al., 2014)
John, S. G., & Conway, T. M. (2014). A role for scavenging in the marine biogeochemical cycling of zinc and zinc isotopes. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 394, 159–167. doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2014.02.053.
Little, S. H., Vance, D., Walker-Brown, C., & Landing, W. M. (2014). The oceanic mass balance of copper and zinc isotopes, investigated by analysis of their inputs, and outputs to ferromanganese oxide sediments. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 125, 673–693. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2013.07.046
Wyatt, N. J., Milne, A., Woodward, E. M. S., Rees, A. P., Browning, T. J., Bouman, H. A., Worsfold, P. J., Lohan, M. C. (2014). Biogeochemical cycling of dissolved zinc along the GEOTRACES South Atlantic transect GA10 at 40°S. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 28(1), 44–56. doi:10.1002/2013GB004637.
Zhao, Y., Vance, D., Abouchami, W., & de Baar, H. J. W. (2014). Biogeochemical cycling of zinc and its isotopes in the Southern Ocean. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 125, 653–672. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2013.07.045.
Picture: Courtesy of Micha Rijkenberg (NIOZ).