Primary production in the Ocean: from the synoptic to the global scale

Place of the Conference: University of Liège “ Place du XX Août, 7 4000 Liège Belgium
13th – 17th May 2013

Terms of reference

Oceanic primary production is a key component of the marine carbon, oxygen and nutrient cycles as well as the base of the marine food web. Over the past two decades, substantial efforts were deployed to evaluate oceanic primary production. These efforts include in situ measurements of uptake rates using isotopic trace techniques, satellite remote sensing, autonomous instrumentation for bio-optics, carbon or oxygen measurements, and the development of semi-empirical to complex biogeochemical models.
The 45th International Liege Colloquium on Ocean Dynamics will investigate new insights related to the evaluation of primary production and the study of the dynamics between physical forcing and ocean productivity responses at various physical and temporal scales. Particular attention will be focused on the variability at the synoptic to seasonal scales and how it complicates our ability to sample primary production and derive large-scale, climate-driven primary production budgets.
More specifically, the following topics will be covered:

  • Importance of physical factors, such as transport and mixing, controlling light limitation and nutrient supply
  • Primary production spatial variability: from the sub-mesoscale to the global scale
  • Primary production temporal variability: from season to century-scale
  • Progress in in-situ evaluation, resolution of in-situ data
  • Progress in primary production retrieval from space (e.g. algorithms dealing with Case II waters and PFT distribution)
  • Fate of primary produced material
  • Ocean PP variability: bottom up versus top down control (e.g. role of viruses, grazing, scavenging)
  • Progress in biogeochemical models in relation to phytoplankton physiology, the representation of variable stoichiometric ratios, the role of mixotrophy.
  • Biodiversity of primary producers as addressed by in-situ measurements, satellite data and biogeochemical models
  • interoperability of in-situ, satellite and modelling estimates of primary production
  • Primary production in polar regions and sea-ice, coastal versus deep ocean processes,
  • Impact of benthic Habitat (e.g. seagrass coral) on primary production and importance of benthic diagenetic processes on pelagic primary production.
Thematic sessions and Keynote talks
  • Opening Keynote talk by John Marra
  • Primary Production in the Arctic Ocean (convener: Marcel Babin, Keynote: Eddy Carmack)
  • Primary Production in the Antarctic Ocean (convener: Pedro Monteiro, Keynote: Mchael Bender)
  • Primary Production in sea-Ice (convener: David Thomas, Keynote CJ Mundy)
  • Phytoplankton Functional Types (convener: Shubha Sathyendranath, Keynote : Mike Follows)
  • Benthic- pelagic coupling (conveners: M. Vichi, P. Régnier: Keynote: Sandra Arndt)
  • Primary production variability and coastal-offshore export in upwelling regions (IMBER session, convener Javier Arístegui: Keynote: Francisco Chavez)
  • Impact of meso/submesoscale on Primary Production (convener: Marina Lévy, Keynote: Amala Mahadevan)
  • Modelling (convenor: Marilaure Grégoire)
  • Field estimates of Primary Production (convener, John Marra, Keynote: Emilio Marañòn)
  • Satellite (convenor: Gavin Tilstone)