Optics for Marine Science – Shedding light on the oceans

Thursday 29 November 2018 - 10:00 to 11:00
NOC Southampton - Node Room (074/02) (Waterfront Campus).
Ina Lefering (Uni Strathclyde)

The availability of light underwater influences biological processes such as photosynthesis which affects biogeochemistry, and physical processes such as solar heating which has implications for mixing and stratification. The structure of underwater light fields also determine ocean colour remote sensing signals which provide global views of surface biogeochemistry and support important monitoring applications such as coastal erosion and harmful algal blooms. Underwater and water-leaving light fields can be modelled based on measurements of inherent optical properties (IOPs) such as spectral absorption and backscattering coefficients. Information on the optical properties of the marine environment is therefore required for a variety of scientific and management applications and optical datasets have become more widely available due to the integration of optical sensors into autonomous platforms such as floats and gliders. Together with recent developments and improvements in optical sensors and measurement techniques, this will transform our understanding of the role of light in the marine environment. Here we will discuss the impact of recent developments in optical measurement technology, focussing on applications of the PSICAM (a point-source integrating absorption meter) which has significantly improved the quality of measured absorption data. The availability of PSICAM absorption data has improved our ability to model underwater light fields. It has also provided crucial data supporting first evidence of observations of copepods from space, pushing the boundaries of traditional ocean colour remote sensing into a new trophic level.

Seminar category: 
POETS Corner