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Metadata Report for BODC Series Reference Number 1248262

Metadata Summary

Data Description

Data Category Water sample data
Instrument Type
Niskin bottle  discrete water samplers
Instrument Mounting lowered unmanned submersible
Originating Country United Kingdom
Originator Mr Malcolm Woodward
Originating Organization Plymouth Marine Laboratory
Processing Status banked
Online delivery of data Download available - Ocean Data View (ODV) format
Project(s) UKSOLAS

Data Identifiers

Originator's Identifier D338_CTD_NUTS_62:CTD_053
BODC Series Reference 1248262

Time Co-ordinates(UT)

Start Time (yyyy-mm-dd hh:mm) 2009-05-08 05:20
End Time (yyyy-mm-dd hh:mm) -
Nominal Cycle Interval -

Spatial Co-ordinates

Latitude 21.42490 N ( 21° 25.5' N )
Longitude 17.93561 W ( 17° 56.1' W )
Positional Uncertainty Unspecified
Minimum Sensor or Sampling Depth 5.5 m
Maximum Sensor or Sampling Depth 202.2 m
Minimum Sensor or Sampling Height 894.7 m
Maximum Sensor or Sampling Height 1091.4 m
Sea Floor Depth 1096.9 m
Sea Floor Depth Source -
Sensor or Sampling Distribution Unspecified -
Sensor or Sampling Depth Datum Unspecified -
Sea Floor Depth Datum Instantaneous - Depth measured below water line or instantaneous water body surface


BODC CODERankUnitsTitle
ADEPZZ011MetresDepth (spatial coordinate) relative to water surface in the water body
AMONAATX1Micromoles per litreConcentration of ammonium {NH4+ CAS 14798-03-9} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
BOTTFLAG1Not applicableSampling process quality flag (BODC C22)
FIRSEQID1DimensionlessBottle firing sequence number
NTRIAATX1Micromoles per litreConcentration of nitrite {NO2- CAS 14797-65-0} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
NTRZAATX1Micromoles per litreConcentration of nitrate+nitrite {NO3+NO2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
PHOSAATX1Micromoles per litreConcentration of phosphate {PO43- CAS 14265-44-2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
ROSPOSID1DimensionlessBottle rosette position identifier
SAMPRFNM1DimensionlessSample reference number
SLCAAATX1Micromoles per litreConcentration of silicate {SiO44- CAS 17181-37-2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis

Definition of BOTTFLAG

0The sampling event occurred without any incident being reported to BODC.
1The filter in an in-situ sampling pump physically ruptured during sample resulting in an unquantifiable loss of sampled material.
2Analytical evidence (e.g. surface water salinity measured on a sample collected at depth) indicates that the water sample has been contaminated by water from depths other than the depths of sampling.
3The feedback indicator on the deck unit reported that the bottle closure command had failed. General Oceanics deck units used on NERC vessels in the 80s and 90s were renowned for reporting misfires when the bottle had been closed. This flag is also suitable for when a trigger command is mistakenly sent to a bottle that has previously been fired.
4During the sampling deployment the bottle was fired in an order other than incrementing rosette position. Indicative of the potential for errors in the assignment of bottle firing depth, especially with General Oceanics rosettes.
5Water was reported to be escaping from the bottle as the rosette was being recovered.
6The bottle seals were observed to be incorrectly seated and the bottle was only part full of water on recovery.
7Either the bottle was found to contain no sample on recovery or there was no bottle fitted to the rosette position fired (but SBE35 record may exist).
8There is reason to doubt the accuracy of the sampling depth associated with the sample.
9The bottle air vent had not been closed prior to deployment giving rise to a risk of sample contamination through leakage.

Definition of Rank

  • Rank 1 is a one-dimensional parameter
  • Rank 2 is a two-dimensional parameter
  • Rank 0 is a one-dimensional parameter describing the second dimension of a two-dimensional parameter (e.g. bin depths for moored ADCP data)

Problem Reports

No Problem Report Found in the Database

Data Access Policy

Open Data supplied by Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)

You must always use the following attribution statement to acknowledge the source of the information: "Contains data supplied by Natural Environment Research Council."

Narrative Documents

Niskin Bottle

The Niskin bottle is a device used by oceanographers to collect subsurface seawater samples. It is a plastic bottle with caps and rubber seals at each end and is deployed with the caps held open, allowing free-flushing of the bottle as it moves through the water column.

Standard Niskin

The standard version of the bottle includes a plastic-coated metal spring or elastic cord running through the interior of the bottle that joins the two caps, and the caps are held open against the spring by plastic lanyards. When the bottle reaches the desired depth the lanyards are released by a pressure-actuated switch, command signal or messenger weight and the caps are forced shut and sealed, trapping the seawater sample.

Lever Action Niskin

The Lever Action Niskin Bottle differs from the standard version, in that the caps are held open during deployment by externally mounted stainless steel springs rather than an internal spring or cord. Lever Action Niskins are recommended for applications where a completely clear sample chamber is critical or for use in deep cold water.

Clean Sampling

A modified version of the standard Niskin bottle has been developed for clean sampling. This is teflon-coated and uses a latex cord to close the caps rather than a metal spring. The clean version of the Levered Action Niskin bottle is also teflon-coated and uses epoxy covered springs in place of the stainless steel springs. These bottles are specifically designed to minimise metal contamination when sampling trace metals.


Bottles may be deployed singly clamped to a wire or in groups of up to 48 on a rosette. Standard bottles and Lever Action bottles have a capacity between 1.7 and 30 L. Reversing thermometers may be attached to a spring-loaded disk that rotates through 180° on bottle closure.

Inorganic nutrients concentrations (micromolar sensitivity nitrate, nitrite, phosphate, silicate and ammonium) for UK SOLAS cruise Discovery D338 (ICON)

Originator's Data Acquisition and Analysis

Water samples were collected from 60 of the CTD deployments. The 20-litre CTD bottles were subsampled into acid washed 60 ml HDPE (Nalgene) bottles. Surface samples were also taken from the trace metal clean fish deployed over the starboard quarter whenever a mapping exercise of an upwelling filament was carried out. Hence nutrients surface mapping was not performed throughout the duration of the cruise.

Analysis for the nutrient samples was, in most cases, complete within 3-4 hours of sampling. No samples were stored. Analysis was conducted using a Bran and Luebbe AAIII segmented flow colorimetric autoanalyser. Clean handling techniques were employed to avoid any contamination of the samples, particularly ammonium.

BODC Data Processing Procedures

Nutrients data from CTD, underway and incubation sampling were received by BODC as one accession in three separate files: CTD_nutrients_ICON_09.xls,ICON_09_All_Underway_Final.xls, and ICON_09_All_Photo_OX_Final.xls. For profile data, the samples were identified by CTD cast number and approximate bottle firing depth. For underway data sample identifiers and date and time were provided.

Parameter codes defined in the BODC parameter dictionary were mapped to the variables as follows:

Originator's Parameter Units Description BODC Parameter Code Units Comments
Nitrite µmol 1-1 Concentration of nitrite per unit volume of seawater NTRIAATX µmol l-1 none
Nitrite+Nitrate µmol l-1 Concentration of nitrate per unit volume of seawater NTRZAATX µmol l-1 none
Ammonium µmol l-1 Concentration of ammonium per unit volume of seawater AMONAATX µmol l-1 none
Silicate µmol l-1 Concentration of silicate per unit volume of seawater SLCAAATX µmol l-1 none
Phosphate µmol l-1 Concentration of phosphate per unit volume of seawater PHOSAATX µmol l-1 none

The data were banked according to BODC standard procedures for sample data. The data were banked as received, with no averaging or other modifications applied.

Data Quality Report

The quality and accuracy of the analyses of nitrate, phosphate and silicate were checked by the originator using reference materials supplied by Dr Michio Aoyama from the KANSO company in Japan. These reference materials are close to being globally certified and the exercise was part of a global initiative for a nutrient intercomparability study.

Data values which were indicated as below detection limit or suspect by the originator have been flagged using the appropriate flag in the BODC quality flag scheme.

Project Information

UK Surface Ocean Lower Atmosphere Study

The UK Surface Ocean Lower Atmosphere Study (UK SOLAS) is the UK's contribution to the international SOLAS programme.

UK SOLAS formed interdisciplinary teams to address three primary aims

  • To determine the mechanisms controlling rates of chemical transfer and improve estimates of chemical exchanges
  • To evaluate the impact of these exchanges on the biogeochemistry of the surface ocean and lower atmosphere and on feedbacks between the ocean and atmosphere
  • To quantify the impacts of these boundary layer processes on the global climate system

UK SOLAS started in 2003, to run for seven years. The programme was funded by the Natural Environment Research Council.

Funded projects

In total, 19 projects have been funded by UK SOLAS, over four funding rounds.

Project Title Short Title Principal Investigator
Impact of atmospheric dust derived material and nutrient inputs on near-surface plankton microbiota in the tropical North Atlantic Dust Eric Achterberg
The role and effects of photoprotective compounds in marine plankton - Steve Archer
Field observations of sea spray, gas fluxes and whitecaps SEASAW Ian Brooks
Factors influencing the biogeochemistry of iodine in the marine environment - Lucy Carpenter
Global model of aerosol processes - effects of aerosol in the marine atmospheric boundary layer GLOMAP Ken Carslaw
Ecological controls on fluxes of dimethyl sulphide (DMS) to the atmosphere - David Green
Dust outflow and deposition to the ocean DODO Ellie Highwood
Investigation of near surface production of iodocarbons - rates and exchanges INSPIRE Gill Malin
Reactive halogens in the marine boundary layer RHaMBLe Gordon McFiggans
The role of bacterioneuston in determining trace gas exchange rates - Colin Murrell
Measuring methanol in sea water and investigating its sources and sinks in the marine environment - Phil Nightingale
The impact of coastal upwellings on air-sea exchange of climatically important gases ICON Carol Robinson
The Deep Ocean Gas Exchange Experiment DOGEE Rob Upstill-Goddard
High wind air-sea exchanges HiWASE Margaret Yelland
Aerosol characterisation and modelling in the marine environment ACMME James Allan
3D simulation of dimethyl sulphide (DMS) in the north east Atlantic - Icarus Allen
Processes affecting the chemistry and bioavailability of dust borne iron - Michael Krom
The chemical structure of the lowermost atmosphere - Alastair Lewis
Factors influencing the oxidative chemistry of the marine boundary layer - Paul Monks

UK SOLAS has also supported ten tied studentships, and two CASE studentships.


UK SOLAS fieldwork has included eight dedicated research cruises in the North Atlantic Ocean. Continuous measurements were made aboard aboard the Norwegian weather ship, Polarfront, until her decommission in 2009. Time series have been established at the SOLAS Cape Verde Observatory, and at the Plymouth Marine Laboratory L4 station. Experiments have taken place at the Bergen mesocosm facility.

A series of collaborative aircraft campaigns have added complementary atmospheric data. These campaigns were funded by UK SOLAS, African Monsoon Multidisciplinary Analyses (AMMA-UK), Dust and Biomass Experiment (DABEX) and the Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements (FAAM).


Data Activity or Cruise Information

Data Activity

Start Date (yyyy-mm-dd) 2009-05-08
End Date (yyyy-mm-dd) 2009-05-08
Organization Undertaking ActivityUniversity of East Anglia School of Environmental Sciences
Country of OrganizationUnited Kingdom
Originator's Data Activity IdentifierD338_CTD_CTD_053
Platform Categorylowered unmanned submersible

BODC Sample Metadata Report for D338_CTD_CTD_053

Sample reference number Nominal collection volume(l) Bottle rosette position Bottle firing sequence number Minimum pressure sampled (dbar) Maximum pressure sampled (dbar) Depth of sampling point (m) Bottle type Sample quality flag Bottle reference Comments
206505   20.00 1 1  202.80  204.20  202.10 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206506   10.00 2 2  203.00  204.20  202.20 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206507   20.00 3 3  103.20  103.40  102.60 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206508   20.00 4 4   52.40   52.70   52.20 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206509   20.00 5 5   52.40   53.20   52.50 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206510   20.00 6 6   42.70   43.00   42.60 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206511   20.00 7 7   42.50   43.10   42.50 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206512   20.00 8 8   42.00   42.70   42.10 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206513   20.00 9 9   25.30   26.20   25.60 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206514   20.00 10 10   25.20   25.50   25.20 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206515   20.00 11 11   25.60   26.10   25.70 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206516   20.00 12 12   19.30   19.70   19.40 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206517   20.00 13 13   19.30   19.80   19.40 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206518   20.00 14 14   19.20   19.40   19.20 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206519   20.00 15 15   12.30   12.50   12.30 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206520   20.00 16 16   12.30   12.90   12.50 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206521   20.00 17 17   12.30   12.80   12.50 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206522   20.00 18 18    7.00    7.80    7.40 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206523   10.00 19 19    6.90    7.90    7.40 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206524   20.00 20 20    6.90    7.60    7.20 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206525   20.00 21 21    7.10    7.80    7.40 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206526   20.00 22 22    5.20    5.90    5.50 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206527   20.00 23 23    5.10    5.40    5.20 Niskin bottle No problem reported    
206528   20.00 24 24    5.10    5.60    5.30 Niskin bottle No problem reported    

Please note:the supplied parameters may not have been sampled from all the bottle firings described in the table above. Cross-match the Sample Reference Number above against the SAMPRFNM value in the data file to identify the relevant metadata.

Related Data Activity activities are detailed in Appendix 1


Cruise Name D338
Departure Date 2009-04-15
Arrival Date 2009-05-27
Principal Scientist(s)Carol Robinson (University of East Anglia School of Environmental Sciences)
Ship RRS Discovery

Complete Cruise Metadata Report is available here

Fixed Station Information

No Fixed Station Information held for the Series

BODC Quality Control Flags

The following single character qualifying flags may be associated with one or more individual parameters with a data cycle:

Flag Description
Blank Unqualified
< Below detection limit
> In excess of quoted value
A Taxonomic flag for affinis (aff.)
B Beginning of CTD Down/Up Cast
C Taxonomic flag for confer (cf.)
D Thermometric depth
E End of CTD Down/Up Cast
G Non-taxonomic biological characteristic uncertainty
H Extrapolated value
I Taxonomic flag for single species (sp.)
K Improbable value - unknown quality control source
L Improbable value - originator's quality control
M Improbable value - BODC quality control
N Null value
O Improbable value - user quality control
P Trace/calm
Q Indeterminate
R Replacement value
S Estimated value
T Interpolated value
U Uncalibrated
W Control value
X Excessive difference

SeaDataNet Quality Control Flags

The following single character qualifying flags may be associated with one or more individual parameters with a data cycle:

Flag Description
0 no quality control
1 good value
2 probably good value
3 probably bad value
4 bad value
5 changed value
6 value below detection
7 value in excess
8 interpolated value
9 missing value
A value phenomenon uncertain
B nominal value
Q value below limit of quantification

Appendix 1: D338_CTD_CTD_053

Related series for this Data Activity are presented in the table below. Further information can be found by following the appropriate links.

If you are interested in these series, please be aware we offer a multiple file download service. Should your credentials be insufficient for automatic download, the service also offers a referral to our Enquiries Officer who may be able to negotiate access.

Series IdentifierData CategoryStart date/timeStart positionCruise
2125500Water sample data2009-05-08 05:19:3021.4249 N, 17.93561 WRRS Discovery D338
1988548Water sample data2009-05-08 05:20:0021.4249 N, 17.93561 WRRS Discovery D338