Dr Stuart Painter

Ocean Biogeochemistry and Ecosystems
+44 (0)23 8059 6209

Dr. Painter is a biological oceanographer who utilises multidisciplinary techniques to conduct research in the fields of biological oceanography and marine biogeochemistry. With a particular interest in the marine nitrogen cycle and the complex balance between nutrient supply and biological nutrient transformation he examines the impact that these factors have on phytoplankton communities, marine primary production and nutrient distributions. He is a regular sea-going scientist and works in subtropical and subpolar ocean domains.

Recent research topics


  • Nitrate uptake by picoeukaryotes in the oceanic nitracline 
  • The biological carbon pump and export fluxes
  • Nitrogen fixation in the subtropical North Atlantic.
  • Turbulent diffusive iron and nutrient fluxes to the subpolar North Atlantic.
  • Seasonal and interannual variation in nitrate and urea uptake by phytoplankton within the subtropical ocean.
  • Coccolithophore bloom distribution and behaviour on the Patagonian Shelf.
  • The influence of mesoscale eddies on the distribution of biogeochemical variables and subsequent impacts upon primary productivity trends.
  • Biophysical interactions, particularly the balance between nutrient supply and its subsequent usage by phytoplankton.
  • Seasonal and interannual climatic trends in Mediterranean surface waters.








Achterberg, Eric P.; Steigenberger, Sebastian; Marsay, Chris M.; Le Moigne, Frédéric A.C.; Painter, Stuart C.; Baker, Alex R.; Connelly, Douglas P.; Moore, C. Mark; Tagliabue, Alessandro; Tanhua, Toste. 2018 Iron biogeochemistry in the high latitude North Atlantic Ocean. Scientific Reports, 8 (1). 1283.https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-19472-1
Painter, Stuart C.; Lapworth, Dan J.; Woodward, E. Malcolm S.; Kroeger, Silke; Evans, Chris D.; Mayor, Daniel J.; Sanders, Richard J.. 2018 Terrestrial dissolved organic matter distribution in the North Sea. Science of the Total Environment, 630. 630-647.https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.02.237
Hartman, S.E.; Humphreys, M.P.; Kivimae, C.; Woodward, E.M.S.; Kitidis, V.; McGrath, T.; Hydes, D.J.; Greenwood, N.; Hull, T.; Ostle, C.; Pearce, D.J.; Sivyer, D.; Stewart, B.M.; Walsham, P.; Painter, S.C.; McGovern, E.; Harris, C.; Griffiths, A.; Smilenova, A.; Clarke, J.; Davis, C.; Sanders, R.; Nightingale, P.. 2018 Seasonality and spatial heterogeneity of the surface ocean carbonate system in the northwest European continental shelf. Progress in Oceanography. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pocean.2018.02.005 (In Press)
Painter, Stuart C.; Hartman, Susan E.; Kivimae, Caroline; Salt, Lesley A.; Clargo, Nicola; Daniels, Chris J.; Bozec, Yann; Munns, Lucie; Allen, Stephanie; Hemsley, Victoria S.; Moschonas, Grigorios; Davidson, Keith. 2017 The elemental stoichiometry (C, Si, N, P) of the Hebrides Shelf and its role in carbon export. Progress in Oceanography, 159. 154-177.10.1016/j.pocean.2017.10.001
Pidcock, Rosalind E.M.; Martin, Adrian P.; Painter, Stuart C.; Allen, John T.; Srokosz, Meric A.; Forryan, Alex; Stinchcombe, Mark; Smeed, David A.. 2016 Quantifying mesoscale-driven nitrate supply: a case study. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 30 (8). 1206-1223.10.1002/2016GB005383
Painter, Stuart C.; Finlay, Madelaine; Hemsley, Victoria S.; Martin, Adrian. 2016 Seasonality, phytoplankton succession and the biogeochemical impacts of an autumn storm in the northeast Atlantic Ocean. Progress in Oceanography, 142. 72-104.10.1016/j.pocean.2016.02.001
Sanders, R.; Henson, S.A.; Martin, A.P.; Anderson, T.R.; Bernardello, R.; Enderlein, P.; Fielding, S.; Giering, S.; Hartmann, M.; Iversen, M.; Khatiwala, S.; Lam, P.; Mayor, D.J.; Moore, C.M.; Murphy, E.; Painter, S.C.; Poulton, A.J.; Saw, K.; Stowasser, G.; Tarling, G.A.; Torres-valdes, S.; Trimmer, M.; Wolff, G.A.; Yool, A.. 2016 Controls over Ocean Mesopelagic Interior Carbon Storage (COMICS): fieldwork, synthesis and modelling efforts. Frontiers in Marine Science, 3, 136. 7, pp.10.3389/fmars.2016.00136
Painter, Stuart; Hartman, Sue; Kivimae, Caroline; Salt, Lesley; Clargo, Nicola; Bozec, Yann; Daniels, Chris J.; Jones, Sam; Hemsley, Victoria S.; Munns, Lucie; Allen, Stephanie R.. 2016 Carbon exchange between a shelf sea and the ocean: The Hebrides Shelf, west of Scotland. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 121 (7). 4522-4544.10.1002/2015JC011599
van Gennip, Simon; Martin, Adrian P.; Srokosz, Meric A.; Allen, John T.; Pidcock, Rosalind; Painter, Stuart C.; Stinchcombe, Mark C.. 2016 Plankton patchiness investigated using simultaneous nitrate and chlorophyll observations. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 121 (6). 4149-4156.10.1002/2016JC011789
Hemsley, Victoria S.; Smyth, Timothy J.; Martin, Adrian P.; Frajka-Williams, Eleanor; Thompson, Andrew F.; Damerell, Gillian; Painter, Stuart C.. 2015 Estimating oceanic primary production using vertical irradiance and chlorophyll profiles from ocean gliders in the North Atlantic. Environmental Science & Technology, 49 (19). 11612-11621.10.1021/acs.est.5b00608
Hopkins, Jason; Henson, Stephanie A.; Painter, Stuart C.; Tyrrell, Toby; Poulton, Alex J.. 2015 Phenological characteristics of global coccolithophore blooms. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 29 (2). 239-253.10.1002/2014GB004919
Rumyantseva, Anna; Lucas, Natasha; Rippeth, Tom; Henson, Stephanie; Martin, Adrian; Painter, Stuart C.. 2015 Ocean nutrient pathways associated with passage of a storm. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 29 (8). 1179-1189.10.1002/2015GB005097
Martin, Adrian; Levy, Marina; van Gennip, Simon; Pardo, Silvia; Srokosz, Meric; Allen, John; Painter, Stuart C.; Pidcock, Roz. 2015 An observational assessment of the influence of mesoscale and submesoscale heterogeneity on ocean biogeochemical reactions. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 29 (9). 1421-1438.10.1002/2015GB005129
Painter, S.C.; Patey, M.D.; Tarran, G.A.; Torres-valdes, S.. 2014 Picoeukaryote distribution in relation to nitrate uptake in the oceanic nitracline. Aquatic Microbial Ecology, 72 (3). 195-213.10.3354/ame01695
Valiadi, M.; Painter, S.C.; Allen, J.T.; Balch, W.M.; Iglesias-Rodriguez, M.D.. 2014 Molecular detection of bioluminescent dinoflagellates in surface waters of the Patagonian Shelf during early austral summer 2008. PLoS One, 9 (6). e98849.10.1371/journal.pone.0098849
Torres-Valdés, S.; Painter, S.C.; Martin, A.P.; Sanders, R.; Felden, J.. 2014 Data compilation of fluxes of sedimenting material from sediment traps in the Atlantic Ocean. Earth System Science Data, 6 (1). 123-145.10.5194/essd-6-123-2014
Balch, W.M.; Drapeau, D.T.; Bowler, B.C.; Lyczskowski, E.R.; Lubelczyk, L.C.; Painter, S.C.; Poulton, A.J.. 2014 Surface biological, chemical, and optical properties of the Patagonian Shelf coccolithophore bloom, the brightest waters of the Great Calcite Belt. Limnology and Oceanography, 59 (5). 1715-1732.10.4319/lo.2014.59.5.1715
Sanders, Richard; Henson, Stephanie A.; Koski, Marja; De la Rocha, Christina L.; Painter, Stuart C.; Poulton, Alex J.; Riley, Jennifer; Salihoglu, Baris; Visser, Andre; Yool, Andrew; Bellerby, Richard; Martin, Adrian. 2014 The Biological Carbon Pump in the North Atlantic. Progress in Oceanography, 129 (B). 200-218.10.1016/j.pocean.2014.05.005
Painter, S.C.; Henson, S.A.; Forryan, A.; Steigenberger, S.; Klar, J.; Stinchcombe, M.C.; Rogan, N.; Baker, A.R.; Achterberg, E.P.; Moore, C.M.. 2014 An assessment of the vertical diffusive flux of iron and other nutrients to the surface waters of the subpolar North Atlantic Ocean. Biogeosciences, 11 (8). 2113-2130.10.5194/bg-11-2113-2014
Pidcock, Rosalind; Martin, Adrian; Allen, John; Painter, Stuart C.; Smeed, David. 2013 The spatial variability of vertical velocity in an Iceland basin eddy dipole. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, 72. 121-140.10.1016/j.dsr.2012.10.008
Marcinko, C.L.J.; Allen, J.T.; Poulton, A.J.; Painter, S.C.; Martin, A.P.. 2013 Diurnal variations of dinoflagellate bioluminescence within the open-ocean north-east Atlantic. Journal of Plankton Research, 35 (1). 177-190.10.1093/plankt/fbs081
Marcinko, Charlotte L.J.; Painter, Stuart C.; Martin, Adrian P.; Allen, John T.. 2013 A review of the measurement and modelling of dinoflagellate bioluminescence. Progress in Oceanography, 109. 117-129.10.1016/j.pocean.2012.10.008
Poulton, A.J.; Painter, S.C.; Young, J.R.; Bates, N.R.; Bowler, B.; Drapeau, D.; Lyczsckowski, E.; Balch, W.M.. 2013 The 2008 Emiliania huxleyi bloom along the Patagonian Shelf: Ecology, biogeochemistry and cellular calcification. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 27 (4). 1023-1033.10.1002/2013GB004641
Painter, Stuart C.; Patey, Matthew D.; Forryan, Alexander; Torres-Valdes, Sinhue. 2013 Evaluating the balance between vertical diffusive nitrate supply and nitrogen fixation with reference to nitrate uptake in the eastern subtropical North Atlantic Ocean. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 118 (10). 5732-5749.10.1002/jgrc.20416
Forryan, Alexander; Martin, Adrian P.; Srokosz, Meric A.; Popova, Ekaterina E.; Painter, Stuart C.; Renner, Angelika H. H.. 2013 A new observationally motivated Richardson number based mixing parametrization for oceanic mesoscale flow. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 118 (3). 1405-1419.10.1002/jgrc.20108
Henson, Stephanie A.; Painter, Stuart C.; Holliday, N. Penny; Stinchcombe, Mark C.; Giering, Sarah L.C.. 2013 Unusual subpolar North Atlantic phytoplankton bloom in 2010: Volcanic fertilisation or North Atlantic Oscillation? Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 118 (10). 4771-4780.10.1002/jgrc.20363
Forryan, A.; Martin, A.P.; Srokosz, M.A.; Popova, E.E.; Painter, S.C.; Stinchcombe, M.C.. 2012 Turbulent nutrient fluxes in the Iceland Basin. Deep Sea Research Part I Oceanographic Research Papers, 63. 20-35.10.1016/j.dsr.2011.12.006
Martin, Adrian P.; Lucas, Michael I.; Painter, Stuart C.; Pidcock, Rosalind; Prandke, Hartmut; Prandke, Holger; Stinchcombe, Mark C.. 2010 The supply of nutrients due to vertical turbulent mixing: A study at the Porcupine Abyssal Plain study site in the northeast Atlantic [in special issue: Water Column and Seabed Studies at the PAP Sustained Observatory in the Northeast Atlantic] Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 57 (15). 1293-1302.10.1016/j.dsr2.2010.01.006
Painter, Stuart C.; Pidcock, Rosalind E.; Allen, John T.. 2010 A mesoscale eddy driving spatial and temporal heterogeneity in the productivity of the euphotic zone of the northeast Atlantic [in special issue: Water Column and Seabed Studies at the PAP Sustained Observatory in the Northeast Atlantic] Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 57 (15). 1281-1292 .10.1016/j.dsr2.2010.01.005
Painter, Stuart C.; Lucas, Michael I.; Stinchcombe, Mark C.; Bibby, Thomas S.; Poulton, Alex J.. 2010 Summertime trends in pelagic biogeochemistry at the Porcupine Abyssal Plain study site in the northeast Atlantic [in special issue: Water Column and Seabed Studies at the PAP Sustained Observatory in the Northeast Atlantic] Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 57 (15). 1313-1323.10.1016/j.dsr2.2010.01.008
Painter, Stuart C.; Poulton, Alex J.; Allen, John T.; Pidcock, Rosalind; Balch, William M.. 2010 The COPAS’08 expedition to the Patagonian Shelf: Physical and environmental conditions during the 2008 coccolithophore bloom. Continental Shelf Research, 30 (18). 1907-1923.10.1016/j.csr.2010.08.013
Pidcock, Rosalind; Srokosz, Meric; Allen, John; Hartman, Mark; Painter, Stuart; Mowlem, Matt; Hydes, David; Martin, Adrian. 2010 A Novel Integration of an Ultraviolet Nitrate Sensor On Board a Towed Vehicle for Mapping Open-Ocean Submesoscale Nitrate Variability. Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology, 27 (8). 1410-1416.10.1175/2010JTECHO780.1
Allen, J.T.; Painter, S.C.; Rixen, M.. 2008 Eddy transport of Western Mediterranean Intermediate Water to the Alboran Sea. Journal of Geophysical Research, 114 (C4). C04024.10.1029/2007JC004649
Painter, Stuart C.; Sanders, Richard; Waldron, Howard N.; Lucas, Michael I.; Torres-Valdes, Sinhue. 2008 Urea distribution and uptake in the Atlantic Ocean between 50° N and 50°S. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 368. 53-63.10.3354/meps07586
Painter, Stuart C.; Sanders, Richard; Waldron, Howard N.; Lucas, Michael I.; Woodward, E. Malcolm S.; Chamberlain, Katie. 2008 Nitrate uptake along repeat meridional transects of the Atlantic Ocean. Journal of Marine Systems, 74 (1-2). 227-240.10.1016/j.jmarsys.2007.12.009
Painter, S.C.; Sanders, R.; Poulton, A.J.; Woodward, E.M.S.; Lucas, M.; Chamberlain, K.. 2007 Nitrate uptake at photic zone depths is not important for export in the subtropical ocean. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 21 (4). GB4005.10.1029/2006GB002807


Painter, S.C.; et al, .. 2015 RRS Discovery Cruise DY017, 20 Oct - 05 Nov 2014. Outer Hebrides process cruise. Southampton, National Oceanography Centre, 118pp. (National Oceanography Centre Cruise Report, 29)
Painter, S.C.; Martin, A.P.. 2014 The use of gliders for oceanographic science: the data processing gap. Southampton, National Oceanography Centre, 34pp. (National Oceanography Centre Research and Consultancy Report, 45)
Allen, John; Painter, Stuart; Martin, Adrian; Iglesias-Rodrigues, Debora; Marcinko, Charlotte; Valiadi, Martha. 2012 Luminescence and Marine Plankton (LAMP)Final Report, National Oceanography Centre, Research and Consultancy Report No. 22. Southampton, NOC, 35pp. (UNSPECIFIED)


Painter, S.C.. 2006 New production in the Tropical and Subtropical Atlantic Ocean. University of Southampton, Faculty of Engineering Science and Mathematics, School of Ocean and Earth Science, PhD Thesis, 292pp.

Electronic output

Torres-valdes, Sinhue; Painter, Stuart; Martin, Adrian; Sanders, Richard. Compilation of downward flux observations from sediment trap deployments in the Atlantic Ocean - Contribution to EURO-BASIN's Data integration.. doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.807946 [Output (Electronic)]