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Impact of Multiple Stressors on Marine Nitrogen Fixation and Tropical Ocean Ecosystems

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  • Full or part time
    Dr Tagliabue
    Dr Mahaffey
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

This is an extract of the research project. Simply click on “Apply on-line” above for an instant access to the complete version.

The supervisory team uses laboratory, field and modelling experiments to understand the drivers of ocean biogeochemistry in general and nitrogen fixation in particular. The overall aim of the studentship will be to i) estimate how rates of N fixation may change in the future ocean, ii) quantify the degree of uncertainty we have in these predictions and iii) assess which are the key drivers in different ocean regions. To do this will require the assembly of large-scale data sets from laboratory and field experiments and the use of state of the art ocean biogeochemical models to test hypotheses. The precise aims and objectives can be shaped in line with the particular interests of the successful candidate.

In addition to gaining expert skills in the analysis of large scale datasets and using biogeochemical models, there will be the opportunity to participate in research cruises and/or visit Prof. Hutchins’ laboratory at the University of Southern California (depending on the interests of the student). The successful candidate will participate in the NERC funded Doctoral Training Programme (DTP) at the University of Liverpool. The DTP combines the Universities of Manchester and Liverpool alongside the National Oceanography Centre. Finally, the candidate will also attend national and international conferences/workshops.

This project would be ideal for a student interested in global biogeochemical cycles, biological oceanography and climate change. Ideally, the candidate will have a background in a physical or biological science and have strong numeracy skills. No previous experience in laboratory, fieldwork or modelling is required, as training will be given in the first year of the PhD.

Funding Notes

Competitive tuition fee, research costs and stipend (£14,056 tax free) from the NERC Doctoral Training Partnership “Understanding the Earth, Atmosphere and Ocean” (DTP website: http://www.liv.ac.uk/studentships-earth-atmosphere-ocean/) led by the University of Liverpool, the National Oceanographic Centre and the University of Manchester. The studentship is granted for a period of 42 months. Further details on eligibility, how to apply, deadlines for applications and interview dates can be found on the website. EU students are eligible for a fee-only award.

References

Falkowski, P. G., R. T. Barber, V. Smetacek (1998), Biogeochemical Controls and Feedbacks on Ocean Primary Production, Science, 281(5374), 200-206, doi:10.1126/science.281.5374.200.

Fu, F. X., E. Yu, N. S. Garcia, J. Gale, Y. Luo, E. A. Webb, and D. A. Hutchins (2014), Differing responses of marine N2 fixers to warming and consequences for future diazotroph community structure, Aquat Microb Ecol, 72(1), 33-46, doi:10.3354/ame01683.

Garcia, N. S., F. Fu, P. N. Sedwick, and D. A. Hutchins (2014), Iron deficiency increases growth and nitrogen-fixation rates of phosphorus-deficient marine cyanobacteria, The ISME journal, doi:10.1038/ismej.2014.104.

Hutchins, D. A., F.-X. Fu, E. A. Webb, N. Walworth, and A. Tagliabue (2013), Taxon-specific response of marine nitrogen fixers to elevated carbon dioxide concentrations, Nature Geoscience, doi:10.1038/ngeo1858.

Tagliabue, A., L. Bopp, and M. Gehlen (2011), The response of marine carbon and nutrient cycles to ocean acidification: Large uncertainties related to phytoplankton physiological assumptions, Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 25, doi:10.1029/2010gb003929.

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