Dust iron dissolution in seawater: Results from a one-year time-series in the Mediterranean Sea

Thibaut Wagener, Elvira Pulido-Villena, Cécile Guieu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A better comprehension of atmospheric iron dissolution in seawater would be a key advance in understanding the atmospheric supply of iron to the ocean and its role on marine biogeochemistry. So far, different studies have demonstrated that dissolution of atmospheric iron depends on physical and chemical properties of the particles, which can be modified during their transport from the source. Here, based on a one-year time-series in the Western Mediterranean Sea, we show that dissolution of iron from a Saharan desert dust sample in seawater follows the seasonal trend of the dissolved organic carbon (DOC) variability in the surface layer. As part of the DOC pool, the role of iron binding ligands, probably derived from bacteria activity, has also been investigated. The dust iron dissolution rates are found to be linearly dependent on iron binding ligands and dissolved organic carbon concentrations (r2 > 0.65, p < 0.01, n = 9).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL16601
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number16
StatePublished - Aug 28 2008


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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