Metadata Report for BODC Series Reference Number 1336618

Metadata Summary

Data Description

Data Category Water sample data
Instrument Type
Teflon-coated 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
Project(s) Shelf Sea Biogeochemistry (SSB)

Data Identifiers

Originator's Identifier DY008_UCCTD_NUTS_62:020
BODC Series Reference 1336618

Time Co-ordinates(UT)

Start Time (yyyy-mm-dd hh:mm) 2014-03-22 12:07
End Time (yyyy-mm-dd hh:mm) -
Nominal Cycle Interval -

Spatial Co-ordinates

Latitude 51.04231 N ( 51° 2.5' N )
Longitude 6.60739 W ( 6° 36.4' W )
Positional Uncertainty 0.05 to 0.1 n.miles
Minimum Sensor Depth 10.0 m
Maximum Sensor Depth 94.6 m
Minimum Sensor Height 9.2 m
Maximum Sensor Height 93.8 m
Sea Floor Depth 103.8 m
Sensor Distribution Unspecified -
Sensor Depth Datum Unspecified -
Sea Floor Depth Datum Unspecified -


BODC CODE Rank Units Short Title Title
ADEPZZ01 1 Metres DepBelowSurf Depth below surface of the water body
AMONAATX 1 Micromoles per litre NH4_Unfilt_Col Concentration of ammonium {NH4+ CAS 14798-03-9} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
BOTTFLAG 1 Dimensionless C22_flag Sampling process quality flag (BODC C22)
FIRSEQID 1 Dimensionless FireSeqNo Bottle firing sequence number
NTRIAATX 1 Micromoles per litre NO2_Unfilt_ColAA Concentration of nitrite {NO2- CAS 14797-65-0} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
NTRZAATX 1 Micromoles per litre NO3+NO2_Unfilt_ColAA Concentration of nitrate+nitrite {NO3+NO2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
PHOSAATX 1 Micromoles per litre PO4_Unfilt_ColAA Concentration of phosphate {PO43- CAS 14265-44-2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis
ROSPOSID 1 Dimensionless RosPos Bottle rosette position identifier
SAMPRFNM 1 Dimensionless SampRef Sample reference number
SLCAAATX 1 Micromoles per litre SiOx_Unfilt_ColAA Concentration of silicate {SiO44- CAS 17181-37-2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis

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 have a capacity between 1.7 and 30 L, while Lever Action bottles have a capacity between 1.7 and 12 L. Reversing thermometers may be attached to a spring-loaded disk that rotates through 180° on bottle closure.

Inorganic nutrient discrete samples from CTD bottles during RRS James Cook cruise DY008

Originator's Protocol for Data Acquisition and Analysis

Sampling strategy

Samples were collected from 13 CTD casts at up to eight depth levels. The water sample was transferred from the CTD to 60 ml HDPE Nalgene bottles (acid washed and cleaned) using Silicone tubing, with the sample bottle being washed three times before the final sample was taken. This sample was then immediately taken to the laboratory and analysed as soon as possible after the sample was collected. Gloves and other clean handling protocols were adopted following the GO-SHIP protocols. When immediate analysis was not possible samples were stored in the dark, in a fridge, and brought back to room temperature prior to analysis.

Sample Analysis

The inorganic nutrient samples were analysed using a 5 channel (nitrate, nitrite, phosphate, silicate and ammonium) Bran and Luebbe AAIII segmented flow, colorimetric, autoanalyser. The data were calibrated against home nutrient standards and then compared against Certified Nutrient Reference Materials, from KANSO Technos, Japan.

The analytical chemical methodologies used were according to Brewer and Riley (1965) for nitrate, Grasshoff (1976) for nitrite, Kirkwood (1989) for phosphate and silicate, and Mantoura and Woodward (1983) for ammonium. The detection limits were 0.01 µ mol l -1 (nitrite), 0.02 µ mol l -1 (nitrate+nitrite), 0.03 µ mol l -1 (ammonium) and 0.02 µ mol l -1 (phosphate). There was no limit for silicate.


Kirkwood D., 1989. Simultaneous determination of selected nutrients in seawater. ICES CM 1989/C:29.

Brewer and Riley, 1965. The automatic determination of nitrate in sea water. Deep Sea Research, 12, 765-72.

Grasshoff K., 1976. Methods of seawater analysis. Verlag Chemie, Weiheim and New York, 317pp.

Mantoura R.F.C and Woodward E.M.S, 1983. Optimization of the indophenol blue method for the automated determination of ammonia in estuarine waters. Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Science, 17, 219-24.

BODC Data Processing Procedures

The data arrived at BODC in one Excel (.xlsx) file containing discrete samples collected from the DY008 CTD deployments. Data received were loaded into the BODC database using established BODC data banking procedures. Data were loaded into BODC's database without any changes. Originator's variables were mapped to appropriate BODC parameter codes as follows:

Originator's Parameter Originator's Unit Description BODC Parameter Code BODC Unit
Nitrite µ mol Concentration of nitrite {NO2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis NTRIAATX µ mol l -1
Nitrate+Nit µ mol Concentration of nitrate+nitrite {NO3+NO2} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis NTRZAATX µ mol l -1
Ammonium µ mol Concentration of ammonium {NH4} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis AMONAATX µ mol l -1
Silicate µ mol Concentration of silicate {SiO4} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis SLCAAATX µ mol l -1
Phosphate µ mol Concentration of phosphate {PO4} per unit volume of the water body [dissolved plus reactive particulate phase] by colorimetric autoanalysis PHOSAATX µ mol l -1

Data Quality Report

None. (BODC assessment)

Problem Report

None. (BODC assessment)

Project Information

Shelf Sea Biogeochemistry (SSB) Programme

Shelf Sea Biogeochemistry (SSB) is a £10.5 million, six-year (2011-2017) research programme, jointly funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). The aim of the research is to reduce the uncertainty in our understanding of nutrient and carbon cycling within the shelf seas, and of their role in global biogeochemical cycles. SSB will also provide effective policy advice and make a significant contribution to the Living with Environmental Change programme.


The Shelf Sea Biogeochemistry research programme directly relates to the delivery of the NERC Earth system science theme and aims to provide evidence that supports a number of marine policy areas and statutory requirements, such as the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and Marine and Climate Acts.

The shelf seas are highly productive compared to the open ocean, a productivity that underpins more than 90 per cent of global fisheries. Their importance to society extends beyond food production to include issues of biodiversity, carbon cycling and storage, waste disposal, nutrient cycling, recreation and renewable energy resources.

The shelf seas have been estimated to be the most valuable biome on Earth, but they are under considerable stress, as a result of anthropogenic nutrient loading, overfishing, habitat disturbance, climate change and other impacts.

However, even within the relatively well-studied European shelf seas, fundamental biogeochemical processes are poorly understood. For example: the role of shelf seas in carbon storage; in the global cycles of key nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, silicon and iron); and in determining primary and secondary production, and thereby underpinning the future delivery of many other ecosystem services.

Improved knowledge of such factors is not only required by marine policymakers; it also has the potential to increase the quality and cost-effectiveness of management decisions at the local, national and international levels under conditions of climate change.

The Shelf Sea Biogeochemistry research programme will take a holistic approach to the cycling of nutrients and carbon and the controls on primary and secondary production in UK and European shelf seas, to increase understanding of these processes and their role in wider biogeochemical cycles. It will thereby significantly improve predictive marine biogeochemical and ecosystem models over a range of scales.

The scope of the programme includes exchanges with the open ocean (transport on and off the shelf to a depth of around 500m), together with cycling, storage and release processes on the shelf slope, and air-sea exchange of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide).

Further details are available on the SSB website.


15 different organisations are directly involved in research for SSB. These institutions are

In addition, there are third party institutions carrying out sampling work for SSB, but who are not involved in the programme itself. These are:

Research details

Overall, five Work Packages have been funded by the SSB programme. These are described in brief below:

Fieldwork and data collection

The campaign consists of the core cruises in the table below, to the marine shelf (and shelf-edge) of the Celtic Sea on board the NERC research vessels RRS Discovery and RRS James Cook. These cruises will focus on the physics and biogeochemistry of the benthic and pelagic zones of the water column, primarily around four main sampling sites in this area.

Cruise identifier Research ship Cruise dates Work packages
DY008 RRS Discovery March 2014 WP 2 and WP 3
JC105 RRS James Cook June 2014 WP 1, WP 2 and WP 3
DY026 RRS Discovery August 2014 WP1, WP 2 and WP 3
DY018 RRS Discovery November - December 2014 WP 1 and WP 3
DY021 (also known as DY008b) RRS Discovery March 2015 WP 2 and WP 3
DY029 RRS Discovery April 2015 WP 1 and WP 3
DY030 RRS Discovery May 2015 WP 2 and WP 3
DY033 RRS Discovery July 2015 WP 1 and WP 3
DY034 RRS Discovery August 2015 WP 2 and WP 3

Core cruises will be supplemented by partner cruises led by Cefas, MI, MSS, Bangor University and AFBI, spanning the shelf seas and shelf-edges around United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland.

Activities will include coring, Conductivity Temperature and Depth (CTD) deployments, Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers (ADCP) surveys, moorings and wire-walker deployments, benthic lander observatories, autonomous gliders and submersible surveys, Marine Snow Catcher particulate matter analysis, plankton net hauls, in-situ sediment flume investigations and laboratory incubations with core and sea water samples.

Data Activity or Cruise Information

Data Activity

Start Date (yyyy-mm-dd) 2014-03-22
End Date (yyyy-mm-dd) 2014-03-22
Organization Undertaking ActivityNational Oceanography Centre, Southampton
Country of OrganizationUnited Kingdom
Originator's Data Activity IdentifierDY008_UCCTD_020
Platform Categorylowered unmanned submersible

BODC Sample Metadata Report for DY008_UCCTD_020

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
886178   10.00 1 1   95.80   96.80   94.60 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 1T  
886181   10.00 13 2   94.70   95.70   93.50 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 13T  
886184   10.00 2 3   65.20   66.20   64.20 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 2T  
886187   10.00 14 4   64.60   65.60   63.60 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 14T  
886190   10.00 3 5   40.30   41.30   39.60 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 3T  
886193   10.00 15 6   39.40   40.40   38.70 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 15T  
886196   10.00 4 7   10.60   11.60   10.10 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 4T  
886199   10.00 16 8   10.50   11.50   10.00 Teflon-coated Niskin bottle No problem reported 16T  

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.


Cruise Name DY008
Departure Date 2014-03-18
Arrival Date 2014-04-13
Principal Scientist(s)Henry Ruhl (National Oceanography Centre, Southampton)
Ship RRS Discovery

Complete Cruise Metadata Report is available here

Fixed Station Information

Fixed Station Information

Station NameShelf Seas Biogeochemistry Fixed Station Nymph Bank
CategoryOffshore area
Latitude51° 2.56' N
Longitude6° 35.77' W
Water depth below MSL104.0 m

Shelf Seas Biogeochemistry Fixed Station Nymph Bank

This station is one of four mooring sites located on the continental shelf of the Celtic Sea and maintained during the Shelf Seas Biogeochemistry project. The station has a mean water depth 104 m at the following co-ordinates:

Box Corner Latitude Longitude
North-west corner 51.0454° -6.6074°
South-east corner 51.0393° -6.5875°

The position of this station relative to the other Shelf Seas Biogeochemistry sites can be seen from the figure below.

BODC image

Sampling History

DY008 JC105 DY026 DY018
CTD casts 1 2 1 -
STD casts - 1 - -

Mooring deployments

Latitude Longitude Water depth (m) Moored instrument Deployment date Recovery date Deployment cruise Recovery cruise Comments
51.0433° -6.5999° 106 Cefas mini-lander 22-03-2014 10:04 UTC 17-06-2014 09:13 UTC DY008 JC105 -
51.0435° -6.5994° 103 Cefas mini-lander 17-06-2014 10:42 UTC - JC105 - -

Other Series linked to this Fixed Station for this cruise - 1371493

Other Cruises linked to this Fixed Station (with the number of series) - DY026B (1) JC105 (2)

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