Cimoli, Emiliano, Lucieer, Vanessa, Meiners, Klaus M., Chennu, Arjun ORCID:, Catrisios, Katerina, Ryan, Ken G., Lund-Hansen, Lars Cherten, Martin, Andrew, Kennedy, Fraser and Lucieer, Arko (2020) Mapping the in situ microspatial distribution of ice algal biomass through hyperspectral imaging of sea-ice cores. Scientific Reports, 10 . DOI

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Ice-associated microalgae make a significant seasonal contribution to primary production and biogeochemical cycling in polar regions. However, the distribution of algal cells is driven by strong physicochemical gradients which lead to a degree of microspatial variability in the microbial biomass that is significant, but difficult to quantify. We address this methodological gap by employing a field-deployable hyperspectral scanning and photogrammetric approach to study sea-ice cores. The optical set-up facilitated unsupervised mapping of the vertical and horizontal distribution of phototrophic biomass in sea-ice cores at mm-scale resolution (using chlorophyll a [Chl a] as proxy), and enabled the development of novel spectral indices to be tested against extracted Chl a (R2 ≤ 0.84). The modelled bio-optical relationships were applied to hyperspectral imagery captured both in situ (using an under-ice sliding platform) and ex situ (on the extracted cores) to quantitatively map Chl a in mg m−2 at high-resolution (≤ 2.4 mm). The optical quantification of Chl a on a per-pixel basis represents a step-change in characterising microspatial variation in the distribution of ice-associated algae. This study highlights the need to increase the resolution at which we monitor under-ice biophysical systems, and the emerging capability of hyperspectral imaging technologies to deliver on this research goal.

Document Type: Article
Programme Area: PA2
Research affiliation: Integrated Modelling > Data Science and Technology
Affiliations > Not ZMT
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: Yes
DOI etc.:
ISSN: 2045-2322
Date Deposited: 13 Jan 2021 11:05
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2022 08:05

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