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See detailThree-dimensional modelling of the hydrodynamics of the Southern Bight of the North Sea: first results
Ivanov, Evgeny ULiege; Capet, Arthur ULiege; Barth, Alexander ULiege et al

Poster (2017, April 28)

In the frame of the Belgian research project FaCE-It (Functional biodiversity in a Changing sedimentary Environment: Implications for biogeochemistry and food webs in a managerial setting), the impact of ... [more ▼]

In the frame of the Belgian research project FaCE-It (Functional biodiversity in a Changing sedimentary Environment: Implications for biogeochemistry and food webs in a managerial setting), the impact of dredging activities andoffshorewindfarminstallationonthespatialdistributionofsedimentgrainsize,biodiversityandbiogeochemistry will be estimated in the Southern Bight of the North Sea (SBNS) with a focus on the Belgian Coastal Zone (BCZ). To reach this goal, the three-dimensional hydrodynamical model ROMS-COAWST is implemented in the SBNS in order to simulate the complex hydrodynamics and sediment transport. Two levels of nesting are used to reach a resolutionof250mintheBCZ.Themodelisforcedattheair-seainterfacebythe6-hourlyECMWFERA-interim atmospheric dataset and at the open boundaries by the coarse resolution model results available from CMEMS (Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service), and also considers tides and 4 main rivers (Scheldt, Rhine with Maas, Thames and Seine). Two types of simulations have been performed: a 10-years climatological simulation and a simulation over 20032013toinvestigatetheinterannualdynamics.Themodelskillsareevaluatedbycomparingitsoutputstohistorical data (e.g. salinity, temperature and currents) from remote sensing and in-situ. The sediment transport module will then be implemented and its outputs compared to historical and newly collected (in the frame of FaCE-iT) observations on grain size distribution as well as with satellite Suspended Particulate Matter (SPM) images. This will allow assessing the impact of substrate modification due to offshore human activities at local and regional scales. [less ▲]

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See detailBenthic hypoxia and early diagenesis in the Black Sea shelf sediments
Plante, Audrey ULiege; Roevros, Nathalie; Capet, Arthur ULiege et al

Poster (2017, April)

Marine waters of semi-enclosed seas are affected by a major environmental issue which is oxygen depletion in bottom waters. Deoxygenation is one of the most widespread man-induced consequences which can ... [more ▼]

Marine waters of semi-enclosed seas are affected by a major environmental issue which is oxygen depletion in bottom waters. Deoxygenation is one of the most widespread man-induced consequences which can be catastrophic for living species. Between 1970 and 1990, the benthic compartment of the Black Sea underwent modifications due to the occurrence and increase of hypoxia. Indeed, these changes might cause a deterioration of the structure and functioning of the ecosystems. Nowadays, some regions, such as the north-western shelf, are still affected seasonally by this phenomenon.Within the framework of the BENTHOX project, a biogeochemical study focusing on the early diagenesis is conducted in the Black Sea. It aims (1) to obtain a better understanding of the impact of benthic hypoxia on the diagenetic pathways, (2) to contribute to a new dataset of biogeochemical measurements in the sediments including porewaters. During a cruise (Emblas II – May 2016), on board the RV Mare Nigrum, sediment cores were taken at 4 stations on the Ukrainian shelf. Porewaters were extracted on board the ship using Rhizon technique under N2 atmosphere and will be analyzed for dissolved nutrients and major ions. In addition, sediments were sliced and will be determined for major solid phases and trace element contents. A multi-proxies (biological, sedimentological, mineralogical and geochemical) approach will be used to identify the hypoxic events and to reconstruct the history of bottom hypoxia. The results obtained will be presented and discussed with emphasis on the first outcomes and the major biogeochemical processes involved in the early diagenesis. [less ▲]

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See detailThree-dimensional modelling of the Southern Bight of the North Sea: first results and perspectives
Ivanov, Evgeny ULiege; Capet, Arthur ULiege; Barth, Alexander ULiege et al

Poster (2017, March 03)

The impact of offshore wind farm installation and dredging activities on the spatial distribution and dynamics of sediment grain size, biogeochemistry and biodiversity will be estimated in the Southern ... [more ▼]

The impact of offshore wind farm installation and dredging activities on the spatial distribution and dynamics of sediment grain size, biogeochemistry and biodiversity will be estimated in the Southern Bight of the North Sea (SBNS) with a focus on the Belgian Coastal Zone (BCZ) in the frame of the FaCE-It research project (Functional biodiversity in a Changing sedimentary Environment: Implications for biogeochemistry and food webs in a managerial setting). The three-dimensional hydrodynamical model ROMS-COAWST was implemented for simulation of the complex hydrodynamics of SBNS and sediment transport. The first level of nesting with the resolution of 1 km was used in the area of Belgian Economical Zone. In order to reach a fine resolution of 250 m in the BCZ, the second level of nesting will be used. Six-hourly ECMWF ERA-interim meteorological data was used to force the model at the sea-air boundary and the coarse resolution model results available from Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service were used to force the model at the open boundaries. Tides and rivers were also considered. Next types of long-run simulations have been conducted: a 10-years climatological simulation and an interannual simulation over 2004-2013 in order to investigate the interannual dynamics. The model accuracy was evaluated through validation of its outputs against observed salinity, temperature and currents data (remote sensing and in-situ). Results validation of currents and temperature and salinity horizontal fields and vertical profiles against available satellite fields and in-situ data, i.e. from the project field campaign, is conducted and discussed. Application of the nested grid and its benefits for results accuracy is also presented. [less ▲]

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See detailA Multiplatform Experiment to Unravel Meso- and Submesoscale Processes in an Intense Front (AlborEx)
Pascual, Ananda; Ruiz, Simon; Olita, Antonio et al

in Frontiers in Marine Science (2017)

The challenges associated with meso- and submesoscale variability (between 1 and 100 km) require high-resolution observations and integrated approaches. Here we describe a major oceanographic experiment ... [more ▼]

The challenges associated with meso- and submesoscale variability (between 1 and 100 km) require high-resolution observations and integrated approaches. Here we describe a major oceanographic experiment designed to capture the intense but transient vertical motions in an area characterized by strong fronts. Finescale processes were studied in the eastern Alboran Sea (Western Mediterranean) about 400 km east of the Strait of Gibraltar, a relatively sparsely sampled area. In-situ systems were coordinated with satellite data and numerical simulations to provide a full description of the physical and biogeochemical variability. Hydrographic data confirmed the presence of an intense salinity front formed by the confluence of Atlantic Waters, entering from Gibraltar, with the local Mediterranean waters. The drifters coherently followed the northeastern limb of an anticyclonic gyre. Near real time data from acoustic current meter data profiler showed consistent patterns with currents of up to 1 m/s in the southern part of the sampled domain. High-resolution glider data revealed submesoscale structures with tongues of chlorophyll-a and oxygen associated with the frontal zone. Numerical results show large vertical excursions of tracers that could explain the subducted tongues and filaments captured by ocean gliders. A unique aspect of AlborEx is the combination of high-resolution synoptic measurements of vessel-based measurements, autonomous sampling, remote sensing and modeling, enabling the evaluation of the underlying mechanisms responsible for the observed distributions and biogeochemical patchiness. The main findings point to the importance of fine-scale processes enhancing the vertical exchanges between the upper ocean and the ocean interior. [less ▲]

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See detailBenthic contributions to Adriatic and Mediterranean biogeochemical cycles
Capet, Arthur ULiege; Lazzari, Paolo; Spagnoli, Federico et al

Conference (2017)

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See detailDeveloping a hydrodynamical model of the Southern Bight of the North Sea for impact studies
Ivanov, Evgeny ULiege; Capet, Arthur ULiege; Barth, Alexander ULiege et al

Poster (2016, November 08)

In the frame of the Brain FaCE-It project (Functional biodiversity in a Changing sedimentary Environment: Implications for biogeochemistry and food webs in a managerial setting), the impact of fining and ... [more ▼]

In the frame of the Brain FaCE-It project (Functional biodiversity in a Changing sedimentary Environment: Implications for biogeochemistry and food webs in a managerial setting), the impact of fining and hardening resulting from dredging and wind farms installation on the sediment grain size distribution has to be assessed at the scale of the Southern Bight of the North Sea (SBNS) with a particular focus on the Belgian Coastal Zone (BCZ). With this aim, the ROMS-COAWST tri-dimensional (3D) hydrodynamic model is implemented to simulate the hydrodynamics in the SBNS. At its open boundaries with the Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea, the model is forced with the results of a coarse resolution model available from Mercator. A high resolution of 250 m is used in the area of the BCZ where the accuracy of model predictions needs to be refined. Model currents, tides, temperature and salinity fields will be described and first validation exercises with satellite and local data will be presented and discussed in regards with the objectives of FaCE-It. In a next step, the model will be coupled with a sediment transport in order to describe the dynamics of suspended particulate materials (SPM) and the distribution of the seafloor sediment grain size. When finalized the hydrodynamic model will be coupled with a diagenetic model and will provide environmental conditions for scaling up local foodweb studies that are performed in the frame of FaCE-iT. The final aim is to assess the impact of substrate modifications due to aggregate extraction and wind farms on the biogeochemistry, benthic functionality and food webs at local (around the wind farm) and regional scales (SBNS). [less ▲]

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See detailPotential for Composite Analysis in the Black Sea
Capet, Arthur ULiege; Mason, Evan; Troupin, Charles et al

Conference (2016, October)

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See detailOperational forecasting of the Black sea: merging model simulations and satellite products
Vandenbulcke, Luc ULiege; Capet, Arthur ULiege; Ivanov, Evgeny ULiege et al

Scientific conference (2016, September 29)

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See detailDINEOF analyses of Sea Surface Temperature data in the Black Sea
Alvera Azcarate, Aida ULiege; Vandenbulcke, Luc ULiege; Barth, Alexander ULiege et al

Scientific conference (2016, September 29)

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See detailImpact of vertical and horizontal advection on nutrient distribution in the southeast Pacific
Barceló-Llull, Barbara; Mason, Evan; Capet, Arthur ULiege et al

in Ocean Science (2016), 12(4), 1003-1011

An innovative approach is used to analyze the impact of vertical velocities associated with quasi-geostrophic (QG) dynamics on the redistribution and uptake of nitrate in the southeast Pacific (SEP). A ... [more ▼]

An innovative approach is used to analyze the impact of vertical velocities associated with quasi-geostrophic (QG) dynamics on the redistribution and uptake of nitrate in the southeast Pacific (SEP). A total of 12 years of vertical and horizontal currents are derived from an observation based estimate of the ocean state. Horizontal velocities are obtained through the application of thermal wind balance to weekly temperature and salinity fields. Vertical velocities are estimated by integration of the QG omega equation. Seasonal variability of the synthetic vertical velocity and kinetic energy associated with the horizontal currents is coincident, with peaks in austral summer (November–December) in accord with published observations. The impact of vertical velocity on SEP nitrate uptake rates is assessed by using two Lagrangian particle tracking experiments that differ according to vertical forcing (ω = ωQG vs. ω = 0). From identical initial distributions of nitrate-tagged particles, the Lagrangian results show that vertical motions induce local increases in nitrate uptake reaching up to 30 %. Such increases occur in low uptake regions with high mesoscale activity. Despite being weaker than horizontal currents by a factor of up to 10−4, vertical velocity associated with mesoscale activity is demonstrated to make an important contribution to nitrate uptake, hence productivity, in low uptake regions. [less ▲]

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See detailIntegrating sediment biogeochemistry into 3D oceanic models: A study of benthic-pelagic coupling in the Black Sea
Capet, Arthur ULiege; Meysman, Filip; Akoumianaki, Ioanna et al

in Ocean Modelling (2016), 101

Three-dimensional (3D) ecosystem models of shelf environments should properly account for the biogeochemical cycling within the sea floor. However, a full and explicit representation of sediment ... [more ▼]

Three-dimensional (3D) ecosystem models of shelf environments should properly account for the biogeochemical cycling within the sea floor. However, a full and explicit representation of sediment biogeochemistry into 3D ocean models is computationally demanding. Here, we describe a simplified approach to include benthic processes in 3D ocean models, which includes a parameterization of the different pathways for organic matter mineralization and allows for organic matter remobilization by bottom currents and waves. This efficient approach enables decadal simulations that resolve the inertial contribution of the sea floor to the biogeochemical cycling in shelf environments. The model was implemented to analyze the benthic-pelagic coupling in the northwestern shelf of the Black Sea. Three distinct biogeochemical provinces were identified on the basis of fluxes and rates associated with benthic-pelagic coupling. Our model simulations suitably capture the seasonal variability of in situ flux data as well as their regional variation, which stresses the importance of incorporating temporally varying sediment biogeochemistry and resuspension/redeposition cycles in shelf ecosystem models. [less ▲]

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See detailDecline of the Black Sea oxygen inventory
Capet, Arthur ULiege; Stanev, Emil; Beckers, Jean-Marie ULiege et al

in Biogeosciences (2016), 13

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See detailImplications of Refined Altimetry on Estimates of Mesoscale Activity and Eddy-Driven Offshore Transport in the Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems
Capet, Arthur ULiege; Mason, Evan; Rossi, Vincent et al

in Geophysical Research Letters (2014), 41

We investigate the extent to which the recently upgraded version of the Ssalto/Duacs sea level anomaly product affects the description of mesoscale activity in the Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems (EBUS ... [more ▼]

We investigate the extent to which the recently upgraded version of the Ssalto/Duacs sea level anomaly product affects the description of mesoscale activity in the Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems (EBUS). Drifter observations confirm that the new data set released by Archiving, Validation and Interpretation of Satellite Oceanographic data (AVISO) in April 2014 (DT14) offers an enhanced description of mesoscale activity for the four EBUS. DT14 returns significantly higher eddy kinetic energy levels (+80%) within a 300 km coastal band, where mesoscale structures are known to induce important lateral physical and biogeochemical fluxes. When applied to DT14, an automatic eddy detection algorithm detects more eddies in the EBUS (+37%), and lower eddy radius estimates, in comparison with results using the former altimetry product (DT10). We show that despite higher eddy densities, the smaller eddy radii result in westward eddy transport estimates that are smaller than those obtained from DT10 ( −12%). [less ▲]

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See detailStudy of the multi-decadal evolution of the Black Sea hydrodynamics and biogeochemistry using mathematical modelling
Capet, Arthur ULiege

Doctoral thesis (2014)

This thesis addresses the biogeochemical cycles in the Black Sea (BS) during the shifting environmental context that affected the BS during the last decades of the 20th century. The study is based on ... [more ▼]

This thesis addresses the biogeochemical cycles in the Black Sea (BS) during the shifting environmental context that affected the BS during the last decades of the 20th century. The study is based on sophisticated data analysis tools and on the development and implementation of a coupled 3D biogeochemical model on the BS domain. The long term variability of the BS hydrodynamical structure was first examined on the basis of in-situ profiles (1950-2012), satellite imagery (1985-2000) and 3D modelling (1960-2000). Profiles of temperature and salinity were used to derive vertical characteristics of the BS structure: the mixed layer depth and the cold content of the Cold Intermediate Layer. To untangle the spatial and temporal trends from this heterogeneous dataset, a general methodology was proposed and embedded in the data analysis software DIVA. The detrended climatologies and long-term time series provided by this approach were used to assess statistical relationships with local atmospheric conditions. Satellite data (sea surface temperature and altimetry) and model results were then analyzed to relate observable surface dynamics to internal hydrodynamic properties. The main multivariate modes of variability of the BS hydrodynamic structure were highlighted on the basis of Empirical Orthogonal Function analysis. Their temporal evolution was explained by the occurrences of specific atmospheric patterns, identified on the basis of neural algorithm analysis and related to the phases of well known teleconnection systems (i.e. the North Atlantic and East Asia/West Russia oscillations). To study the dynamics of eutrophication in the shallow Black Sea NorthWestern Shelf (BS-NWS), a benthic model component was developed that considers the environmental control on diagenetic processes and the bottom shear stress restriction on organic matter deposition. The model accurately reproduced the seasonal and spatial variability depicted by in-situ estimates of benthic nutrients and oxygen fluxes in the BS-NWS. Outputs were used to review the role of the benthic component in BS biogeochemical cycles. The multi-decadal simulations, enabled by the low computational requirements of the benthic-pelagic coupling approach, revealed an inertial component in the dynamics of eutrophication resulting from the accumulation of organic matter during the years of important nutrient loads. This refined resolution of the BS-NWS biogeochemistry allowed us to study the phenomenon of seasonal hypoxia, which is believed to have played a part in the sudden collapse of the fisheries stocks in the late 80s. An index H, combining the spatial and temporal extension of the seasonal hypoxic event, was proposed to quantify the annual intensity of hypoxia as a pressure on benthic communities. We have shown that hypoxia was first triggered in the late 70s by high nitrogen loads, and sustained by sedimentary organic matter accumulation after a rapid reduction of these loads in the 90s. After 2000, warmer summers again led to a increase of the H-index, by entraining hypoxic events of smaller spatial extension but increased duration. A practical relationship distinguishing the impacts of eutrophication and climatic drivers was proposed to assess the effect of their projected values on the future intensity of hypoxia. [less ▲]

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See detailUntangling spatial and temporal trends in the variability of the Black Sea Cold Intermediate Layer and mixed Layer Depth using the DIVA detrending procedure
Capet, Arthur ULiege; Troupin, Charles ULiege; Cartensen, Jacob et al

in Ocean Dynamics (2014), 64(3), 315-324

Current spatial interpolation products may be biased by uneven distribution of measurements in time. This manuscript presents a detrending method that recognizes and eliminates this bias. The method ... [more ▼]

Current spatial interpolation products may be biased by uneven distribution of measurements in time. This manuscript presents a detrending method that recognizes and eliminates this bias. The method estimates temporal trend components in addition to the spatial structure and has been implemented within the Data Interpolating Variational Analysis (DIVA) analysis tool. The assets of this new detrending method are illustrated by producing monthly and annual climatologies of two vertical properties of the Black Sea while recognizing their seasonal and interannual variabilities : the mixed layer depth, and the cold content of its Cold Intermediate Layer (CIL). The temporal trends, given as by-products of the method, are used to analyze the seasonal and interannual variability of these variables over the past decades (1955-2011). In particular, the CIL interannual variability is related to the cumulated winter air temperature anomalies, explaining 88\% of its variation. [less ▲]

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