Why The Labrador Sea Is The ‘Lungs Of The Ocean’


Recent research shows how oxygen in the atmosphere travels to the ocean’s depths.

The Labrador Sea is a body of water between Greenland and eastern Canada where the ocean churns, allowing the deepest layers of the ocean to bubble up to the surface and take in oxygen from the atmosphere. For the first time, scientists from Canada and Germany measured how oxygen flows into the ocean’s interior, just like you might measure oxygen as it flows to and from the heart.

Each winter, the Labrador Sea behaves like the ocean’s lungs, as the ocean’s cool, oxygen-rich surface waters sink to its depths. Those deep currents that flow thousands of feet below the surface of the Labrador Sea carry that oxygen throughout the Atlantic Ocean, into Antarctic waters, and eventually into the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

The researchers determined this path by suspending oxygen sensors on submerged cables nearly 2,000 feet below the surface of the Labrador Sea for two years, where they expected the oxygen to mix with other deep water currents. Thus, the researchers could detect when water from the Labrador Sea’s surface reached this mixing depth.

“The newly inhaled oxygen was clearly noticeable as a pulse of high oxygen concentration that passed our sensors between March and August.”, said lead author Jannes Koelling.

Understanding how oxygen moves through the ocean because climate change is expected to make it more difficult for oxygen to reach the depths of the ocean, as warmer water generally contains less of it. Additionally, 70 percent of marine habitats may already be showing signs of suffocation and specifically affecting mid-water fisheries.



Read original article here

Denial of responsibility! TechnoCodex is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – [email protected]. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Leave a comment