Bio-optical characterization and light availability parameterization in Uummannaq Fjord and Vaigat–Disko Bay (West Greenland)
Abstract. This study investigated the bio-optical conditions of Uummannaq Fjord and Vaigat–Disko Bay, two neighboring, semi-enclosed coastal systems in West Greenland. Though close to each other, the systems differ in their hydrographic structure influencing the bio-optical conditions and, subsequently, the biological activities. Both systems showed high inorganic suspended particulate matter (SPMi) concentrations near river runoff or meltwater influxes (max. of 15.28 mg L−1 at the surface) and low colored dissolved organic matter (aCDOM@350nm, < 1.50 m−1) abundance throughout the systems. High chlorophyll levels (as an indicator of phytoplankton biomass) were measured in the Vaigat (max. of 11.44 µg L−1), which represents the outflow arm of Disko Bay. Light penetration depth as indicated by the 1 % depth of photosynthetically available radiation (PAR) was dominated by chlorophyll and SPMi alike, ranging from 12.2 to 41.2 m. Based on these characteristics, an effective two-component parameterization for the diffuse attenuation coefficient kPAR was developed in order to model light penetration depth as a relevant factor for bio-optical studies in Arctic environments under glacial meltwater influence.