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Seawater N/P ratio of the East Sea
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  • Journal title : The Sea
  • Volume 20, Issue 4,  2015, pp.199-205
  • Publisher : The Korean Society of Oceanography
  • DOI : 10.7850/jkso.2015.20.4.199
 Title & Authors
Seawater N/P ratio of the East Sea
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Nitrogen and phosphorus are the limiting elements for growth of phytoplankton, which is a major primary producer of marine ecosystem. Incidentally the stoichiometry of N/P of ocean waters, measured by the (nitrate + nitrite)/phosphate ratio converges to a constant of 16. This characteristic ratio has been used widely for the understanding the ecosystem dynamics and biogeochemical cycles in the ocean. In the East Sea, several key papers were issued in recent years regarding the climate change and its impact on ecosystem dynamic and biogeochemical cycles using N/P ratio because the East Sea is a "miniature ocean" having her own meridional overturning circulation with the appropriate responding time and excellent accessibility. However, cited N/P values are different by authors that we tried to propose a single representative value by reanalyzing the historical nutrient data. We present N/P of the East Sea as for the year 2000. The ratio reveals a remarkable consistency for waters exceeding 300m depth (below the seasonal thermocline). We recommend to use this value in the future studies and hope to minimize confusion for understanding ecosystem response and biogeochemical cycles in relation to future climate change until new N/P value is established from future studies.
Redfield ratio;N/P;East Sea;
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