Spatial distribution of brominated very short-lived substances in the eastern Pacific Academic Article uri icon


  • Seawater concentrations and distributions of brominated very short-lived substances (BrVSLS), including bromoform (CHBr3), dibromomethane (CH2Br2), bromodichloromethane (CHBrCl2), chlorodibromomethane (CHClBr2), were measured in the upper water column (5-750 m) in the eastern Pacific. Inorganic nutrient, pigment concentrations, and picoplankton cell counts were measured to determine biogeochemical factors that affect the production and distribution of these BrVSLS. Elevated concentrations of BrVSLS were observed in coastal and tropical seawater. Concentration maxima for CHBr3, CH2Br 2, and CHClBr2 were observed below the mixed layer, near the subsurface chlorophyll a maxima, which suggest BrVSLS production may be related to photosynthetic biomass production. Our results also suggest that heterotrophic bacteria may also contribute to CH2Br2 and CHBrCl2 production in the water column. The maximum CHBrCl 2 concentration was observed at a depth much deeper than the euphotic zone, which suggests sources other than photosynthetic biomass. Elevated CHBrCl2 concentrations in deeper waters were coincident with elevated CHCl3 concentrations, which may be an evidence for successive chlorine substitution of CHBr3 in deeper and older water masses. Key Points BrVSLS maxima were observed near the subsurface chlorophyll a maxima. BrVSLS production is in general related to ocean photosynthetic biomass. CHBr3 and CH2Br2 production is controlled by different biogeochemical factors. 2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Liu, Y., Yvon-Lewis, S. A., Thornton, D., Campbell, L., & Bianchi, T. S.

citation count

  • 14

complete list of authors

  • Liu, Yina||Yvon-Lewis, Shari A||Thornton, Daniel CO||Campbell, Lisa||Bianchi, Thomas S

publication date

  • May 2013