Search results

Filters

  • Journals
  • Date

Search results

Number of results: 210
items per page: 25 50 75
Sort by:

Abstract

A filamentous benthic cyanobacteria, strain USMAC16, was isolated from the High Arctic Svalbard archipelago, Norway, and a combination of morphological, ultrastructural and molecular characterisation (16S rRNA gene sequence) used to identify to species level. Cell dimensions, thylakoid arrangement and apical cell shape are consistent with the Pseudanabaena genus description. The molecular characterisation of P. catenata gave 100% similarity with Pseudanabaena catenata SAG 1464-1, originally reported from Germany. Strain USMAC16 was cultured under a range of temperature and photoperiod conditions, in solid and liquid media, and harvested at exponential phase to examine its phenotypic plasticity. Under different culture conditions, we observed considerable variations in cell dimensions. The longest cell (5.91±0.13 μm) was observed at 15°C under 12:12 light:dark, and the widest cell (3.24±0.06 μm) at 4°C under 12:12 light: dark in liquid media. The study provides baseline data documenting the morphological variation of P. catenata in response to changing temperature regimes.
Go to article

Abstract

It is assumed that close to the margins of ice-sheets, glacial, fluvial and aeolian processes overlap, and combined with weathering processes, produce numerous sediments, in which quartz is a common mineral. Quartz grains, if available, may serve as a powerful tool in determining the depositional history, transportation mode and postdepositional processes. However, quartz grain studies in some modern glacial areas are still sparse. In this study, we examine for the first time quartz grains sampled from the modern glacial and proglacial environments of the Russell Glacier, southwest Greenland in binocular microscope and scanning electron microscope, to analyze their shape, character of surface and microtextures. We debate whether the investigated quartz grains reveal glacial characteristics and to what extent they carry a signal of another transportation and sedimentary processes. Although glacial fracturing and abrasion occur in grain suites, most mechanical origin features are not of a high frequency or freshness, potentially suggesting a reduced shear stress in the glacier from its limited thickness and influence of the pressurized water at the ice-bed. In contrast, the signal that originates from the fluvial environment is much stronger derived by numerous aqueous-induced features present on quartz grain surfaces. Aeolian-induced microtextures on grain surfaces increase among the samples the closest to the ice margin, which may be due to enhanced aeolian activity, but are practically absent in sediments taken from the small scale aeolian landforms. In contrast, aeolian grains have been found in the bigger-size (1.0-2.0 mm) investigated fraction. These grains gained the strongest aeolian abrasion, possibly due to changes in transportation mode.
Go to article

Abstract

The specific activity of natural gamma emitters like actinium (228Ac), bismuth (212Bi, 214Bi), lead (212Pb, 214Pb), potassium (40K), radium (224Ra), thallium (208Tl) and artificial radioisotope caesium (137Cs) was measured in 2005 in the surface layer of marine sediments in the northern Svalbard: Wijdefjorden, Woodfjorden, Vestfjorden and Bockfjorden as well as in the freshwater reservoirs in Andre Land. Nonuniform spatial distribution of these radionuclides was found. Sediment sample from Bockfjorden had the highest specific activities of all natural radionuclides. The specific radioactivity of 137Cs was much lower than specific radioactivities of natural radionuclides but there were differences between investigated locations. The distribution of 137Cs is similar to persistent organic pollutants of the lake sediments in the area.
Go to article

Abstract

A two-year-long data set of air temperature from four different altitudes above Petuniabukta, central Spitsbergen, was analysed in order to assess the near-surface temperature lapse rates and the relative frequency of air temperature inversion occurrence. From August 2013 to July 2015, air temperatures at adjacent altitudes in Petuniabukta were strongly correlated. The near-surface lapse rates in all three layers differed significantly both from the average lapse rate in the international standard atmosphere (0.65°C 100 m-1) and the lapse rate calculated by linear regression. A pronounced annual cycle was detected in the lowermost air layer (from 23 to 136 m a.s.l.) with a variable near-surface lapse rate in the winter months, while an annual cycle was not apparent in the air layers above 136 m a.s.l. The lowermost layer was also characterized by a notable daily cycle in near-surface lapse rate in spring and autumn. Air temperature inversions occurred in up to 80% of the study period in the air layer below 136 m a.s.l., with the relative frequency being much lower in the other two air layers. The air temperature inversions lasted as long as 139 hours. A case study revealed that one of the strongest air temperature inversions was connected to an area of lower pressure gradients at the 850-hPa pressure level.
Go to article

Abstract

This paper presents a unique case study and methodology for measurements of the bedload transport in the two, newly created troughs at the forefield of the Baranowski Glacier: Fosa and Siodło creeks. The weather conditions and the granulometric analysis are presented and discussed briefly. Rating curves for the Fosa and Siodło creeks are presented for the first time for this region. Changes of the bedload transport as well as water discharge and water velocity at both creeks are investigated. The hysteresis for the relationships between rate of bedload transport and water discharges were identified showing that for both creeks for the higher water levels a figure of eight loop may be easily recognized. Moreover, a new method for the calculation of bedload transport rate, based on the weighted arithmetic mean instead of the arithmetic mean, is proposed.
Go to article

Abstract

It is generally accepted that ice cores archive amount-weighted water stable isotope signals. In order to achieve an improved understanding of the nature of water stable isotope signals stored in ice cores annual δ18O and δ2H averages (i.e. amount-weighted) were calculated for two Antarctic meteorological stations, Vernadsky and Hal-ley Bay, using monthly precipitation amount and monthly net accumulation as weights, respectively. These were then compared with the annual mean δ18O δ2H and records of the nearest available ice cores. In addition, at the stations, both arithmetic means (i.e. time-weighted) and amount-weighted (precipitation amount and net accumulation used as weights) annual air temperature averages were calculated and then compared to amount weighted annual mean δ18O and δ2H using correlation- and regression analyses. The main hypothesis was that amount weighted annual mean water isotope and temperature records from the stations would be able to replicate the annual water isotope signal stored in ice cores to a higher degree. Results showed that (i) amount weighting is incapable of ameliorating the signal replication between the stations and the ice cores, while arithmetic means gave the stronger linear relationships; (ii) post depositional processes may have a more determining effect on the isotopic composition of the firn than expected; and (iii) mean annual air temperature provided the closest match to ice core derived annual water isotope records. This latter conveys a similar message to that of recent findings, in as much as ambient temperature, via equilibrium isotope fractionation, is imprinted into the uppermost snow layer by vapor exchange even between precipitation events. Together, these observations imply that ice core stable water isotope records can be a more continuous archive of near-surface temperature changes than hitherto believed.
Go to article

Abstract

Pigments (chloropigments-a and carotenoids) in sediments and macroalgae samples, collected in Hornsund, in July 2015 and July 2016, were analysed (HPLC) in this work. In spite of the aerobic conditions and the periodic intensive solar irradiation in the Arctic environment, neither of which favour pigment preservation in water column and surface sediments, our results indicate that these compounds can provide information about phytoplankton composition, primary production and environmental conditions in this region. The sum of chloropigments-a, a marker of primary production, in the Hornsund sediments varied from 0.40 to 14.97 nmol/g d.w., while the sum of carotenoids ranged from 0.58 to 8.08 nmol/g d.w. Pheophorbides-a and pyropheophorbides-a made up the highest percentage in the sum of chloropigments-a in these sediments, supplying evidence for intensive zooplankton and/or zoobenthos grazing. Among the carotenoids, fucoxanthin and its derivatives (19'-hexanoyloxyfucoxanthin and 19'-hexanoyloxy-4-ketofucoxanthin) contributed the highest percentage, which points to the occurrence mainly of diatoms and/or haptophytes in the water. The pigment markers show that the input of macroalgae to the total biomass could be considerable only in the intertidal zone.
Go to article

Abstract

Twenty six specimens of the polychaete Eulalia picta were found in finegrained sand tubes. Material was collected in the Antarctic fjord, Admiralty Bay at the depth of about 100 m. The comparison of tube sediment with the sediment composition at the collection site demonstrated that tubes were created with a high degree of particle selection. Our findings might suggest presence of the tube-building behavior in E. picta or show that this species is a highly specialized predator crawling into the tubes of other sessile polychaetes and uses their tubes as protective cases.
Go to article

Abstract

Lacydonia (Polychaeta: Phyllodocida) is a poorly known genus containing 16 species that are sporadically collected in low densities all over the world oceans. During three cruises (in June 2014 in Ullsfjorden, northern Norway, in January 2015 in Kongsfjorden, and in June 2012 in Smeerenburg, Svalbard) nine specimens of Lacydonia eliasoni were found on sandy and muddy sediments at depths from 180 to 350 m. All specimens were incomplete and consisted of 10 to 29 chaetigers. This study presents the first record of the Lacydonia genus in the waters of Svalbard as well as the first record of L. eliasoni in coastal waters off northern Norway. This species has been reported previously in the Skagerrak and Trondheimsfjorden (southern Norway), our findings therefore may indicate a northward extension of its range, possibly due to climate changes.
Go to article

Abstract

Background concentrations of main trace elements and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were investigated in pristine soils of the Beliy Island situated in the Kara Sea, Yamal autonomous region, North-West Siberia, Russia. Belyi Island is considered as reference landscpae for further investigation of soil polychemical contamination of the Yamal region. Three plots with different functional load (mature ecosystem, occasionally and permanently affected plots) were investigated with aim to evaluate the trend of long term polychemical effect on Stagnic Cryosols - benchmark soil type of the Yamal region. Accumulation of trace elements was not fixed in all soils investigated due to absence of direct sources of heavy metals on the territory of the Beliy Island. At the same time, there were essential alterations of PAHs fractional composition and content due to pronounced accumulation of the petroleum products combustion in the vicinity of the permanent meteorological station and former seasonal field base. The most intensive and statistically significant accumulation was noted for phenanthrene, anthracene, benzo[k]fluoranthene and benzo[a]pyrene. This indicates accumulation of the PAHs in soils, affected by the anthropogenic activity on the meteorological station. The most pronounced differences were revealed for the superficial layer of 0-5 cm. Deeper horizons of soil did not show accumulation of contaminants. Data obtained can be used for organization of further monitoring of contamination of soils and landscapes in Yamal as developing and industrial region.
Go to article

Abstract

Phytoplankton composition plays a major role in biogeochemical cycles of the ocean. The intensity of carbon fixation and export is strongly dependent on the phytoplankton community. Yet, the contribution of different types of phytoplankton to the total production on various communities is still poorly understood in the Indian Ocean sector of Southern Ocean (SO). Therefore the variability of chlorophyll- A (Chl-a) and diatoms in the frontal ecosystems of the Indian sector of SO have been investigated along with the sea surface temperature (SST), sea surface wind (SSW), photosynthetically active radiation (PAR), and nutrients datasets for the period of 1998-2012. Combined analysis of in-situ, model and satellite observations indicate that the variability of Chl- A and diatoms were primarily influenced by light and wind. The Chl- A was higher at the sub-Antarctic front (SAF) followed by the sub-tropical front (STF) and the polar front (PF). The diatom concentration was higher at the SAF followed by the PF and STF. Maximum concentration of Chl- A and diatoms commonly observed at the SAF region are probably due to the moderate PAR, SST and wind. Dominance of diatoms at the PF may be attributed to their adaptability for low light conditions. The results from this study in the frontal ecosystems would help to understand the biogeochemical cycle of the Indian sector of the SO.
Go to article

Abstract

This article analyses the conditions affecting the incoming global solar radiation in Hornsund (Spitsbergen) in spring of 2015. Incoming solar radiation turned out to be average for the season under analysis, as compared with longer-term data. The clearness index (KT) was 0.46, and was mainly determined by the extent of cloudiness. As a result of differences in the length of day, sunshine duration in May was greater than in April. Incoming solar radiation to the earth's surface is also affected by the atmospheric optical properties. The average value of aerosol optical depth (AOD) at 500 nm in Hornsund in spring of 2015 was 0.087. In the analysed period, increased values of AOD at 500 nm (up to 0.143) were observed, although these are not record values. Over April and May, the greatest part of optical depth was comprised of anthropogenic aerosols (41%), followed by marine aerosols (26%), desert dust (21%) and biomass-burning aerosols (12%). This indicates the significant role of the anthropogenic factor in the climatic conditions of Spitsbergen.
Go to article

Abstract

Eighteen sediment samples from a 36 cm long sediment core retrieved from a proglacial lake (namely P 11) situated in the Schirmacher Oasis, East Antarctica, were analysed for the study of quartz grain morphology and microtexture, along with sand percentage, to reconstruct the paleoenvironmental changes in the lake during the Holocene. The age of the core ranges from 3.3 ka BP to 13.9 ka BP. The quartz grain morphology and microtexture reveal significant evidences of glacial transport along with some eolian and aqueous activities. On the basis of predominance of these signatures and the zonation from CONISS Cluster Analysis on the percentages of characteristic grain morphology and microtextures, the entire core has been subdivided into three major zones. From the paleoenvironmental perspective, it can be concluded that there is an onset of interglacial period at the advent of Holocene (12.3 ka BP), which reigned until 5.3 ka BP and thereafter, again a glacial environment prevailed until 3.3 ka BP with some variations in-between. The results indicate probable alternative colder and less colder phases in the study area, which are also well supported by the respective sand percentages in the sediments. © 2017 Polish Academy of Sciences 2017.
Go to article

Abstract

Admiralty Bay (King George Island) is an Antarctic Specially Managed Area and one the most thoroughly studied small-scale marine basins in the Southern Ocean. Our study provides new data on the isopod fauna in this glacially affected fjord. Twelve species of isopods were recorded in this basin for the first time. Six of them were found for the first time in the region of the South Shetland Islands. The highest number of species new for Admiralty Bay were found in the families Munnopsidae (4 species) and Munnidae (3 species).
Go to article

Abstract

This article presents the results of observations of selected fluxes of the radiation balance in north-western Spitsbergen in the years from 2010 to 2014. Measurements were taken in Ny-Ålesund and in the area of Kaffiøyra, on different surface types occurring in the Polar zone: moraine, tundra, snow and ice. Substantial differences in the radiation balance among the various types of surface were observed. The observations carried out in the summer seasons of 2010-2014 in the area of Kaffiøyra demonstrated that the considerable reflection of solar radiation on the Waldemar Glacier (albedo 55%) resulted in a smaller solar energy net income. During the polar day, a diurnal course of the components of the radiation balance was apparently related to the solar elevation angle. When the sun was low over the horizon, the radiation balance became negative, especially on the glacier. Diurnal, annual and multi-annual variations in the radiation balance have a significant influence on the functioning of the environment in polar conditions.
Go to article

Abstract

This paper addresses the influence of land topography and cover on 3D radiative effects under cloudless skies in the Hornsund area, Spitsbergen, Svalbard. The authors used Monte Carlo simulations of solar radiation transfer over a heterogeneous surface to study the impact of a non-uniform surface on: (1) the spatial distribution of irradiance transmittance at the fjord surface under cloudless skies; (2) the spectral shortwave aerosol radiative forcing at the fjord surface; (3) normalized nadir radiance at the Top Of the Atmosphere (TOA) over the fjord. The modelled transmittances and radiances over the fjord are compared to the transmittances and radiances over the open ocean under the same conditions. The dependence of the 3D radiative effects on aerosol optical thickness, aerosol type, surface albedo distribution, solar azimuth and zenith angle and spectral channel is discussed. The analysis was done for channels 3 (459-479 nm) and 2 (841-876 nm) of the MODIS radiometer. In the simulations a flat water surface was assumed. The study shows that snow-covered land surrounding the fjord strongly modifies the radiation environment over the fjord surface. The enhancement of the mean irradiance transmittance over the fjord with respect to the open ocean is up to 0.06 for channel 3. The enhancement exceeds 0.11 in the vicinity of sunlit cliffs. The influence of the snow-covered land on the TOA radiance over the fjord in channel 3 is comparable to the impact of an increase in aerosol optical thickness of over 100%, and in lateral fjords of up to several hundred percent. The increase in TOA radiance is wavelength dependent. These effects may affect retrievals of aerosol optical thickness.
Go to article

Abstract

The embryology of three polar flowering plants of the family Caryophyllaceae was studied using the methods and techniques of the light, normal and fluorescence microscopes, and the electron microscopes, scanning and transmission. The analyzed species were Colobanthus quitensis of West Antarctic (King George Island, South Shetlands Islands) as well as Cerastium alpinum and Silene involucrata of the Arctic (Spitsbergen, Svalbard). In all evaluated species, flowering responses were adapted to the short Arctic and Australian summer, and adaptations to autogamy and anemogamy were also observed. The microsporangia of the analyzed plants produced small numbers of microspore mother cells that were differentiated into a dozen or dozens of trinucleate pollen grains. The majority of mature pollen grains remained inside microsporangia and germinated in the thecae. The monosporous Polygonum type (the most common type in angiosperms) of embryo sac development was observed in the studied species. The egg apparatus had an egg cell and two synergids with typical polarization. A well-developed filiform apparatus was differentiated in the micropylar end of the synergids. In mature diaspores of the analyzed plants of the family Caryophyllaceae, a large and peripherally located embryo was, in most part, adjacent to perisperm cells filled with reserve substances, whereas the radicle was surrounded by micropylar endosperm composed of a single layer of cells with thick, intensely stained cytoplasm, organelles and reserve substances. The testae of the analyzed plants were characterized by species-specific primary and secondary sculpture, and they contained large amounts of osmophilic material with varied density. Seeds of C. quitensis, C. alpinum and S. involucrata are very small, light and compact shaped.
Go to article

Abstract

Plants adapt to extremely low temperatures in polar regions by maximizing their photosynthetic efficiency and accumulating cryoprotective and osmoprotective compounds. Flowering plants of the family Poaceae growing in the Arctic and in the Antarctic were investigated. Their responses to cold stress were analyzed under laboratory conditions. Samples were collected after 24 h and 48 h of cold treatment. Quantitative and qualitative changes of sugars are found among different species, but they can differ within a genus of the family Poaceae. The values of the investigated parameters in Poa annua differed considerably depending to the biogeographic origin of plants. At the beginning of the experiment, Antarctic plants were acclimatized in greenhouse characterized by significantly higher content of sugars, including storage reserves, sucrose and starch, but lower total protein content. After 24 h of exposure to cold stress, much smaller changes in the examined parameters were noted in Antarctic plants than in locally grown specimens. Total sugar content and sucrose, starch and glucose levels were nearly constant in P. annua, but they varied significantly. Those changes are responsible for the high adaptability of P. annua to survive and develop in highly unsupportive environments and colonize new regions.
Go to article

Abstract

During a midwinter cruise north of 80oN to Rijpfjorden, Svalbard, the composition and vertical distribution of the zooplankton community were studied using two different samplers 1) a vertically hauled multiple plankton sampler (MPS; mouth area 0.25 m2, mesh size 200 μm) and 2) a horizontally towed Methot Isaacs Kidd trawl (MIK; mouth area 3.14 m2, mesh size 1500 μm). Our results revealed substantially higher species diversity (49 taxa) than if a single sampler (MPS: 38 taxa, MIK: 28) had been used. The youngest stage present (CIII) of Calanus spp. (including C. finmarchicus and C. glacialis) was sampled exclusively by the MPS, and the frequency of CIV copepodites in MPS was double that than in MIK samples. In contrast, catches of the CV-CVI copepodites of Calanus spp. were substantially higher in the MIK samples (3-fold and 5-fold higher for adult males and females, respectively). The MIK sampling clearly showed that the highest abundances of all three Thysanoessa spp. were in the upper layers, although there was a tendency for the larger-sized euphausiids to occur deeper. Consistent patterns for the vertical distributions of the large zooplankters (e.g. ctenophores, euphausiids) collected by the MPS and MIK samplers provided more complete data on their abundances and sizes than obtained by the single net. Possible mechanisms contributing to the observed patterns of distribution, e.g. high abundances of both Calanus spp. and their predators (ctenophores and chaetognaths) in the upper water layers during midwinter are discussed.
Go to article

Abstract

Inexpensive synthesis of electroceramic materials is required for efficient energy storage. Here the design of a scalable process, flame spray pyrolysis (FSP), for synthesis of size-controlled nanomaterials is investigated focusing on understanding the role of air entrainment (AE) during their aerosol synthesis with emphasis on battery materials. The AE into the enclosed FSP reactor is analysed quantitatively by computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and calculated temperatures are verified by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). Various Li4Ti5O12 (LTO) particle compositions are made and characterized by N2 adsorption, electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction while the electrochemical performance of LTO is tested at various charging rates. Increasing AE decreases recirculation in the enclosing tube leading to lower reactor temperatures and particle concentrations by air dilution as well as shorter and narrower residence time distributions. As a result, particle growth by coagulation - coalescence decreases leading to smaller primary particles that are mostly pure LTO exhibiting high C-rate performance with more than 120 mAh/g galvanostatic specific charge at 40C, outperforming commercial LTO. The effect of AE on FSP-made particle characteristics is demonstrated also in combustion synthesis of LiFePO4 and ZrO2.
Go to article

This page uses 'cookies'. Learn more