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Ocean science

Balancing ocean nitrogen

The ocean's nitrogen budget has escaped quantification. A modelling study shows how a small shift in the nitrate-to-phosphate uptake ratio of phytoplankton has a large effect on calculated nitrogen fixation rates.

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Figure 1: Distribution of excess phosphate in the surface of the eastern tropical and subtropical Pacific Ocean computed from World Ocean Atlas data10.


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Correspondence to Wolfgang Koeve.

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Koeve, W., Kähler, P. Balancing ocean nitrogen. Nature Geosci 3, 383–384 (2010).

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