R07: Ocean Interfaces

How do micro-scale processes at ocean interfaces affect fluxes of climate-relevant substances?

Ocean Interfaces brings together researchers from biology, chemistry, geochemistry, geology, physical oceanography, and mathematics to investigate the accumulation, transformation and transport of climate-relevant substances at and across the diverse ocean interfaces – figuratively speaking to study the ‘breathing of the oceans through their skins’.


The ocean interacts with the atmosphere and lithosphere through continuous exchange of matter and energy. Understanding exchange processes across the ocean interfaces is key to unraveling complex interplays such as climate system feedbacks. The relevant processes are determined by a combination of physical, chemical, and biological processes acting on a variety of scales in time and space. Accumulation of organic and inorganic substances, both in the wider boundary layers and in the microlayers directly at the interface, together with intense biological activity, lead to unique heterogeneous physico-chemical and biological properties deviating greatly from bulk seawater conditions. Further modifications of ocean interfaces, e.g., through photochemical and microbial transformations, contribute to forming an environment, in which transfer processes can both be augmented and diminished.

The Research combines state-of-the-art molecular, microbiological and biogeochemical analytical techniques, laser spectroscopy, micro and mesocosm experimentation, in-situ measurements and theoretical modeling. Three research foci of Ocean Interfaces have been set to advance from the at present mostly phenomenological description to a mechanistically sound parameterization of interfacial exchange processes and to improve our process-oriented understanding of selected climate feedback cycles:

Focus 1 investigates formation, retention and emission processes of climate-relevant substances

Focus 2 links biological imprints on extracellular organic matter to interface properties by investigating the accumulation of organic substances and their intense microbial transformation in the surface ocean boundary layer.

Focus 3 investigates (i) chemical aspects of the ocean as a major source and sink for radiatively and chemically active atmospheric trace gases and (ii) the specific roles of the prevalent organic microlayer in sea-air gas exchange processes and as a biochemical reactor.



Steinle, L., Maltby, J., Treude, T., Kock, A., Bange, H. W., Engbersen, N., Zopfi, J., Lehmann, M. F. and Niemann, H. (2017) Effects of low oxygen concentrations on aerobic methane oxidation in seasonally hypoxic coastal waters Biogeosciences (BG), 14 (6). pp. 1631-1645. DOI 10.5194/bg-14-1631-2017.

Arevalo-Martinez, D. L., Kock, A., Steinhoff, T., Brandt, P., Dengler, M., Fischer, T., Körtzinger, A. and Bange, H. W. (2017) Nitrous oxide during the onset of the Atlantic Cold Tongue Journal of Geophysical Research - Oceans, 122 (1). pp. 171-184. DOI 10.1002/2016JC012238.

Vehmaa, A., Almen, A. K., Brutemark, A., Paul, A. J., Riebesell, U., Furuhagen, S. and Engström-Öst, J. (2016) Ocean acidification challenges copepod phenotypic plasticity Biogeosciences (BG), 13 (22). pp. 6171-6182. DOI 10.5194/bg-13-6171-2016.

Geersen, J., Scholz, F., Linke, P., Schmidt, M., Lange, D., Behrmann, J. H., Völker, D. and Hensen, C. (2016) Fault zone controlled seafloor methane seepage in the rupture area of the 2010 Maule Earthquake, Central Chile Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 17 (11). pp. 4802-4813. DOI 10.1002/2016GC006498.

Steinle, L., Schmidt, M., Bryant, L. D., Haeckel, M., Linke, P., Sommer, S., Zopfi, J., Lehmann, M. F., Treude, T. and Niemann, H. (2016) Linked sediment and water-column methanotrophy at a man-made gas blowout in the North Sea: Implications for methane budgeting in seasonally stratified shallow seas Limnology and Oceanography, 61 (S1). S367-S386. DOI 10.1002/lno.10388 .

Paul, A. J., Achterberg, E. P., Bach, L. T., Boxhammer, T., Czerny, J., Haunost, M., Schulz, K. G., Stuhr, A. and Riebesell, U. (2016) No observed effect of ocean acidification on nitrogen biogeochemistry in a summer Baltic Sea plankton community Biogeosciences (BG), 13 . pp. 3901-3913. DOI 10.5194/bg-13-3901-2016.

Saha, M., Wiese, J., Weinberger, F. and Wahl, M. (2016) Rapid adaptation to controlling new microbial epibionts in the invaded range promotes invasiveness of an exotic seaweed Journal of Ecology, 104 (4). pp. 969-978. DOI 10.1111/1365-2745.12590.

Böning, C. W., Behrens, E., Biastoch, A., Getzlaff, K. and Bamber, J. L. (2016) Emerging impact of Greenland meltwater on deepwater formation in the North Atlantic Ocean Nature Geoscience, 9 (7). pp. 523-527. DOI 10.1038/ngeo2740.

Rovelli, L., Dengler, M., Schmidt, M., Sommer, S., Linke, P. and McGinnis, D. (2016) Thermocline mixing and vertical oxygen fluxes in the stratified central North Sea Biogeosciences (BG), 13 (5). pp. 1609-1620. DOI 10.5194/bg-13-1609-2016.

Nauendorf, A., Krause, S., Bigalke, N. K., Gorb, E. V., Gorb, S., Haeckel, M., Wahl, M. and Treude, T. (2016) Microbial colonization and degradation of polyethylene and biodegradable plastic bags in temperate fine-grained organic-rich marine sediments Marine Pollution Bulletin, 103 (1-2). pp. 168-178. DOI 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2015.12.024.

Muñoz, P., Cárdenas, L. J., Garbe-Schönberg, D., Sellanes, J., Dezileau, L., Melville, I. and Mendes, S. D. (2016) Geochemical characterization of two distinctive systems with evidence of chemosynthetic activity, explored at the SE Pacific margin off Chile (46°S and 33°S) Progress in Oceanography, 148 . pp. 26-43. DOI 10.1016/j.pocean.2016.09.002.

Sadiek, I. and Friedrichs, G. (2016) Saturation dynamics and working limits of saturated absorption cavity ringdown spectroscopy Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 18 (33). pp. 22978-22989. DOI 10.1039/C6CP01966H.

Schwarzer, K., Thanh, N. C. and Ricklefs, K. (2016) Sediment re-deposition in the mangrove environment of Can Gio, Saigon River estuary (Vietnam) Journal of Coastal Research . pp. 138-142.

Löscher, C., Fischer, M. A., Neulinger, S., Fiedler, B., Philippi, M., Schütte, F., Singh, A., Hauss, H., Karstensen, J., Körtzinger, A., Künzel, S. and Schmitz, R. A. (2015) Hidden biosphere in an oxygen-deficient Atlantic open ocean eddy: future implications of ocean deoxygenation on primary production in the eastern tropical North Atlantic Biogeosciences (BG), 12 (16). pp. 7467-7482. DOI 10.5194/bg-12-7467-2015.

Leifer, I., Solomon, E., Schneider von Deimling, J., Rehder, G., Coffin, R. and Linke, P. (2015) The Fate of Bubbles in a Large, Intense Bubble Megaplume for Stratified and Unstratified Water : Numerical Simulations of 22/4b Expedition Field Data Marine and Petroleum Geology, 68 . pp. 806-823. DOI 10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2015.07.025.

Nauw, J., Linke, P. and Leifer, I. (2015) Bubble momentum plume as a possible mechanism for an early breakdown of the seasonal stratification in the northern North Sea Marine and Petroleum Geology, 68 . pp. 789-805. DOI 10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2015.05.003.

Vielstädte, L., Karstens, J., Haeckel, M., Schmidt, M., Linke, P., Reimann, S., Liebetrau, V., McGinnis, D. and Wallmann, K. (2015) Quantification of methane emissions at abandoned gas wells in the Central North Sea Marine and Petroleum Geology, 68 . pp. 848-860. DOI 10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2015.07.030.

Wilfert, P., Krause, S., Liebetrau, V., Schönfeld, J., Haeckel, M., Linke, P. and Treude, T. (2015) Response of anaerobic methanotrophs and benthic foraminifera on 20 years of methane emission from a gas blowout in the North Sea Marine and Petroleum Geology, 68 . pp. 731-742. DOI 10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2015.07.012.

Steeb, P., Krause, S., Linke, P., Hensen, C., Dale, A. W., Nuzzo, M. and Treude, T. (2015) Efficiency and adaptability of the benthic methane filter at Quepos Slide cold seeps, offshore Costa Rica Biogeosciences (BG), 12 . pp. 6687-6706. DOI 10.5194/bg-12-6687-2015.

Singh, A., Baer, S. E., Riebesell, U., Martiny, A. C. and Lomas, M. W. (2015) C : N : P stoichiometry at the Bermuda Atlantic Time-series Study station in the North Atlantic Ocean Biogeosciences (BG), 12 (21). pp. 6389-6403. DOI 10.5194/bg-12-6389-2015.

Paul, A. J., Bach, L. T., Schulz, K. G., Boxhammer, T., Czerny, J., Achterberg, E. P., Hellemann, D., Trense, Y., Nausch, M., Sswat, M. and Riebesell, U. (2015) Effect of elevated CO2 on organic matter pools and fluxes in a summer Baltic Sea plankton community Biogeosciences (BG), 12 (20). pp. 6181-6203. DOI 10.5194/bg-12-6181-2015.

Arevalo-Martínez, D. L., Kock, A., Löscher, C., Schmitz, R. A. and Bange, H. W. (2015) Massive nitrous oxide emissions from the tropical South Pacific Ocean Nature Geoscience, 8 (7). pp. 530-533. DOI 10.1038/ngeo2469.

Schmale, O., Leifer, I., Schneider von Deimling, J., Stolle, C., Krause, S., Kießlich, K., Fram, A. and Treude, T. (2015) Bubble transport Mechanism: Indications for a gas bubble-mediated inoculation of benthic methanothrophs into the water column Continental Shelf Research, 103 . pp. 70-78. DOI 10.1016/j.csr.2015.04.022.

Rovelli, L., Attard, K. M., Bryant, L. D., Flögel, S., Stahl, H. J., Roberts, M., Linke, P. and Glud, R. N. (2015) Benthic O2 uptake of two cold-water coral communities estimated with the non-invasive eddy-correlation technique Marine Ecology Progress Series, 525 . pp. 97-104. DOI 10.3354/meps11211.

Buchs, D. M., Cukur, D., Masago, H. and Garbe-Schönberg, D. (2015) Sediment flow routing during formation of forearc basins: Constraints from integrated analysis of detrital pyroxenes and stratigraphy in the Kumano Basin, Japan Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 414 . pp. 164-175. DOI 10.1016/j.epsl.2014.12.046.

Singh, A., Gandhi, N., Ramesh, R. and Prakash, S. (2015) Role of Cyclonic Eddy in enhancing Primary and New production in the Bay of Bengal Journal of Sea Research, 97 . pp. 5-13. DOI 10.1016/j.seares.2014.12.002.

Goericke, R., Bograd, S. J. and Grundle, D. (2015) Denitrification and flushing of the Santa Barbara Basin bottom waters Deep-Sea Research Part II-Topical Studies in Oceanography, 112 . pp. 53-60. DOI 10.1016/j.dsr2.2014.07.012.

Schmidt, M., Linke, P., Sommer, S., Esser, D. and Cherednichenko, S. (2015) Natural CO2 seeps offshore Panarea – A test site for subsea CO2 leak detection technology Marine Technology Society Journal, 49 (1). pp. 19-30. DOI 10.4031/MTSJ.49.1.3.

Singh, A. and Ramesh, R. (2015) Environmental controls on new and primary production in the northern Indian Ocean Progress in Oceanography, 131 . pp. 138-145. DOI 10.1016/j.pocean.2014.12.006.

Bauersachs, T., Rochelmeier, J. and Schwark, L. (2015) Seasonal lake surface water temperature trends reflected by heterocyst glycolipid-based molecular thermometers Biogeosciences, 12 (12). pp. 3741-3751.

Drotlef, D. M., Appel, E., Peisker, H., Dening, K., del Campo, A., Gorb, S. and Barnes, W. J. P. (2015) Morphological studies of the toe pads of the rock frog, Staurois parvus (family: Ranidae) and their relevance to the development of new biomimetically inspired reversible adhesives Interface Focus, 5 (1).

Eggs, B., Wolff, J. O., Kuhn-Nentwig, L., Gorb, S. and Nentwig, W. (2015) Hunting Without a Web: How Lycosoid Spiders Subdue their Prey Ethology, 121 (12). pp. 1166-1177.

Fleury, S., Martinez, P., Crosta, X., Charlier, K., Billy, I., Hanquiez, V., Blanz, T. and Schneider, R. (2015) Pervasive multidecadal variations in productivity within the Peruvian Upwelling System over the last millennium Quaternary Science Reviews, 125 . pp. 78-90.

Friedemann, K., Kunert, G., Gorb, E., Gorb, S. and Beutel, R. G. (2015) Attachment forces of pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum) on different legume species Ecological Entomology, 40 (6). pp. 732-740.

Rovelli, L., Sommer, S., Bryant, L. D., Kriwanek, S. and Linke, P. (Submitted) Influence of variable seep sediments and bottom-water hydrodynamics on oxygen fluxes at the sediment-water interface Journal of Geophysical Research - Oceans .

McGinnis, D., Sommer, S., Lorke, A., Glud, R. N. and Linke, P. (2014) Quantifying tidally-driven benthic oxygen exchange across permeable sediments: An aquatic eddy correlation study Journal of Geophysical Research - Oceans, 119 (10). pp. 6918-6932. DOI 10.1002/2014JC010303.

Scott, R., Biastoch, A., Roder, C., Stiebens, V. and Eizaguirre, C. (2014) Nano-tags for neonates and ocean-mediated swimming behaviours linked to rapid dispersal of hatchling sea turtles Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences, 281 (1796). p. 20141209. DOI 10.1098/rspb.2014.1209.

Fischer, M., Friedrichs, G. and Lachnit, T. (2014) Fluorescence-Based Quasicontinuous and In Situ Monitoring of Biofilm Formation Dynamics in Natural Marine Environments Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 80 (12). pp. 3721-3728. DOI 10.1128/AEM.00298-14.

Singh, A., Mohiuddin, A., Ramesh, R. and Raghav, S. (2014) Estimating the Loss of Himalayan Glaciers under Global Warming Using the δ18O–Salinity Relation in the Bay of Bengal Environmental Science & Technology Letters, 1 (5). pp. 249-253. DOI 10.1021/ez500076z.

Pansch, C., Schaub, I., Havenhand, J. and Wahl, M. (2014) Habitat traits and food availability determine the response of marine invertebrates to ocean acidification Global Change Biology, 20 (3). pp. 765-777. DOI 10.1111/gcb.12478.

Steeb, P., Linke, P. and Treude, T. (2014) A sediment flow-through system to study the impact of shifting fluid and methane flow regimes on the efficiency of the benthic methane filter Limnology and Oceanography: Methods, 12 . pp. 25-45. DOI 10.4319/lom.2014.12.25.

Al Bitar, L., Gorb, S., Zebitz, C. P. W. and Voigt, D. (2014) Egg adhesion of the codling moth Cydia pomonella L. (Lepidoptera, Tortricidae) to various substrates: II. Fruit surfaces of different apple cultivars Arthropod-Plant Interactions, 8 (1). pp. 57-77.

Arevalo-Martinez, D. L., Beyer, M., Krumbholz, M., Piller, I., Kock, A., Steinhoff, T., Körtzinger, A. and Bange, H. W. (2013) A new method for continuous measurements of oceanic and atmospheric N2O, CO and CO2: performance of off-axis integrated cavity output spectroscopy (OA-ICOS) coupled to non-dispersive infrared detection (NDIR) Ocean Science, 9 (6). pp. 1071-1087. DOI 10.5194/os-9-1071-2013.

Prieß, M., Piwonski, J., Koziel, S., Oschlies, A. and Slawig, T. (2013) Accelerated Parameter Identification in a 3D Marine Biogeochemical Model Using Surrogate-Based Optimization Ocean Modelling, 68 . pp. 22-36. DOI 10.1016/j.ocemod.2013.04.003.

Fischer, M., Wahl, M. and Friedrichs, G. (2013) Field Sensor for In-Situ Detection Of Marine Bacterial Biofilms : Novel Sensor Concept Enables Time-Resolved Detection of Bacteria from initial attachement to mature cell clusters Sea Technology, 54 (2). pp. 49-52.

Heinle, A. and Slawig, T. (2013) Impact of parameter choice on the dynamics of NPZD type ecosystem models Ecological Modelling, 267 . pp. 93-101.

Heinle, A. and Slawig, T. (2013) Internal dynamics of NPZD type ecosystem models Ecological Modelling, 254 . pp. 33-42.

Kleber, J., Laß, K. and Friedrichs, G. (2013) Quantitative Time-Resolved Vibrational Sum Frequency Generation Spectroscopy as a Tool for Thin Film Kinetic Studies: New Insights into Oleic Acid Monolayer Oxidation Journal of Physical Chemistry A, 117 (33). pp. 7863-7875.

Laß, K., Bange, H. W. and Friedrichs, G. (2013) Seasonal signatures in SFG vibrational spectra of the sea surface nanolayer at Boknis Eck Time Series Station (SW Baltic Sea) Biogeosciences (BG), 10 . pp. 5325-5334. DOI 10.5194/bg-10-5325-2013.

Pansch, C., Nasrolahi, A., Appelhans, Y. and Wahl, M. (2013) Tolerance of juvenile barnacles (Amphibalanus improvisus) to warming and elevated pCO2 Marine Biology, 160 (8). pp. 2023-2035. DOI 10.1007/s00227-012-2069-4.

Prieß, M., Koziel, S. and Slawig, T. (2013) Marine Ecosystem Model Calibration with Real Data Using Enhanced Surrogate-Based Optimization Journal of Computational Science, 4 (5). pp. 423-437. DOI 10.1016/j.jocs.2013.04.001.

Siewertsen, E., Piwonski, J. and Slawig, T. (2013) Porting marine ecosystem model spin-up using transport matrices to GPUs Geoscientific Model Development, 6 (1). pp. 17-28.

Friedrichs, G., Wahl, M. and Fischer, M. Antragsteller/Inhaber: Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel ; GEOMAR Helmholtz-Zentrum für Ozeanforschung Kiel (2012) Großflächiger Biofilmsensor DE102011101934 A1 (Patent) Publication

Appelhans, Y., Thomsen, J., Pansch, C., Melzner, F. and Wahl, M. (2012) Sour times: seawater acidification effects on growth, feeding behaviour and acid–base status of Asterias rubens and Carcinus maenas Marine Ecology Progress Series, 459 . pp. 85-98. DOI 10.3354/meps09697.

Becker, M., Andersen, N., Fiedler, B., Fietzek, P., Körtzinger, A., Steinhoff, T. and Friedrichs, G. (2012) Using cavity ringdown spectroscopy for continuous monitoring of delta C-13(CO2) and fCO(2) in the surface ocean Limnology and Oceanography-Methods, 10 . pp. 752-766.

Becker, M., Andersen, N., Fiedler, B., Fietzek, P., Körtzinger, A., Steinhoff, T. and Friedrichs, G. (2012) Using cavity ringdown spectroscopy for continuous monitoring of δ13C(CO2) and ƒCO2 in the surface ocean Limnology and Oceanography: Methods, 10 . pp. 752-766. DOI 10.4319/lom.2012.10.752.

Fischer, M., Wahl, M. and Friedrichs, G. (2012) Design and field application of a UV-LED based optical fiber biofilm sensor Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 33 (1). pp. 172-178. DOI 10.1016/j.bios.2011.12.048.

Hiebenthal, C., Philipp, E. E. R., Eisenhauer, A. and Wahl, M. (2012) Interactive effects of temperature and salinity on shell formation and general condition in Baltic Sea Mytilus edulis and Arctica islandica Aquatic Biology, 14 (3). pp. 289-298. DOI 10.3354/ab00405.

Monecke, T., Petersen, S., Hannington, M. D., Anzidei, M., Esposito, A., Giordano, G., Garbe-Schönberg, D., Augustin, N., Melchert, B. and Hocking, M. (2012) Explosion craters associated with shallow submarine gas venting off Panarea island, Italy Bulletin of Volcanology, 74 (9). pp. 1937-1944. DOI 10.1007/s00445-012-0651-8.

Oeser, M., Strauss, H., Wolff, P. E., Koepke, J., Peters, M., Garbe-Schönberg, D. and Dietrich, M. (2012) A profile of multiple sulfur isotopes through the Oman ophiolite Chemical Geology, 312 . pp. 27-46.

Prieß, M. and Slawig, T. (2012) Aggressive space mapping for optimisation of a marine ecosystem model International Journal of Mathematical Modelling and Numerical Optimisation, 3 (1/2). p. 98. DOI 10.1504/IJMMNO.2012.044732.

Prieß, M., Piwonski, J., Koziel, S. and Slawig, T. (2012) Parameter identification in climate models using surrogate-based optimization Journal of Computational Methods in Science and Engineering, 12 (1-2). pp. 47-62. DOI 10.3233/JCM-2012-0403.

Strauss, H., Bast, R., Cording, A., Diekrup, D., Fugmann, A., Garbe-Schönberg, D., Lutter, A., Oeser, M., Rabe, K., Reinke, D., Teichert, B. M. A. and Westernstroer, U. (2012) Sulphur diagenesis in the sediments of the Kiel Bight, SW Baltic Sea, as reflected by multiple stable sulphur isotopes Isotopes in Environmental and Health Studies, 48 (1). pp. 166-179. DOI 10.1080/10256016.2012.648930.

Bange, H. W., Hansen, H. P., Malien, F., Laß, K., Dale, A. W., Karstensen, J., Petereit, C. and Friedrichs, G. (2011) Boknis Eck Time Series Station (SW Baltic Sea): Measurements from 1957 to 2010 LOICZ Inprint, 2011 (1). pp. 16-22.

Beal, L. M., De Ruijter, W. P. M., Biastoch, A., Zahn, R., Cronin, M., Hermes, J., Lutjeharms, J., Quartly, G., Tozuka, T., Baker-Yeboah, S., Bornman, T., Cipollini, P., Dijkstra, H., Hall, I., Park, W., Peeters, F., Penven, P., Ridderinkhof, H. and Zinke, J. and SCOR/WCRP/IAPSOWorking Group 136 (2011) On the role of the Agulhas system in ocean circulation and climate Nature, 472 (7344). pp. 429-436. DOI 10.1038/nature09983.

Fehling, C. and Friedrichs, G. (2011) Dimerization of HNO in Aqueous Solution: An Interplay of Solvation Effects, Fast Acid-Base Equilibria, and Intramolecular Hydrogen Bonding? Journal of the American Chemical Society, 133 (44). pp. 17912-17922. DOI 10.1021/ja2075949.

Lass, K. and Friedrichs, G. (2011) Revealing structural properties of the marine nanolayer from vibrational sum frequency generation spectra Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, 116 . DOI C08042 10.1029/2010jc006609.

Prieß, M., Koziel, S. and Slawig, T. (2011) Surrogate-based optimization of climate model parameters using response correction Journal of Computational Science, 2 (4). pp. 335-344. DOI 10.1016/j.jocs.2011.08.004.