Introduction to Chemical Oceanography

The concentration, isotopic composition, and distribution of the dissolved and particulate components of seawater tells the story of a fascinating and complex interplay between tectonic uplift, chemical and physical weathering, climate, biology, ocean circulation, and intrinsic properties of elements and ions in solution. In this series of lectures, we will try to understand what controls the chemistry of seawater from a regional to global scale and what is the interplay between climate and ocean chemistry. The major themes that will be covered are: (a) concentration, spacio-temporal distribution, and the residence time of the dissolved components of seawater; (b) air–sea exchange of gases; (c) steady state and non-steady state oceanic cycle of dissolved components; (d) estimation of oceanic mixing time utilising natural and artificial tracers; (e) influence of biology on ocean chemistry - carbon pumping from surface to deep; (f) the role deep ocean carbon reservoir in controlling climate; (g) introduction to stable isotope geochemistry


  • Tracers in the Sea - Broecker and Peng, LDGEO Press, 1983

  • An Introduction to the Chemistry of the Sea - Michael E. Q. Pilson, Cambridge University Press