About the CCE

I'll leave the description to the official CCE-LTER website:

The California Current System is a coastal upwelling biome, as found along the eastern margins of all major ocean basins. These are among the most productive ecosystems in the world ocean.

The California Current Ecosystem LTER (32.9°, -120.3°) is investigating nonlinear transitions in the California Current coastal pelagic ecosystem, with particular attention to long-term forcing by a secular warming trend, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, and El Niño in altering the structure and dynamics of the pelagic ecosystem. The California Current sustains active fisheries for a variety of finfish and marine invertebrates, modulates weather patterns and the hydrologic cycle of much of the western United States, and plays a vital role in the economy of myriad coastal communities.


Linear Inverse Models

LIMs solve the inverse problem by constraining an otherwise free solution space based on mass balance, theoretical bounds and observed values. Compared to forward models, LIMs take an agnostic perspective on parameterizing transfer functions--and therefore avoids some of the issues related to tuning even simple models.


Interannual Variability in Export Efficiency and the Biological Pump

Eastern boundary current upwelling systems are regions of large biogeochemical gradients. In this project we first assess current carbon export models (using remote sensing fields) against in situ data from the California Current. Next we develop a novel approach, which better captures the intra-regional variability in export efficiency and which is robust across this region's major modes of variability.

Trace Metals

TE Sediment Trap material to quantify removal rates of metals from the euphotic zone

Preferential remineralization of biolimiting nutrients is a well document phenomenon. In this project we seek to measure the RLS and residence time for trace elements in the euphotic zone as part of a CCE-LTER process cruise. Samples were collected on 4 experimental cycles using trace metal clean sediment trap tubes and ultra-pure brine solution.



A CCE Process Cruise whose goals was to study offshore advective processes in the California Current region. Specifically the zonal jets and filamentous eddies that form around Point Conception, CA.


UNOLS Chief Scientist Training cruise from Honolulu, HI to San Diego, CA.


A pilot study to determine the feasibility of conducting extensive 234Th activity profiles across the CalCOFI grid. Study included ~250 discrete samples across 72 stations.


My first experience conducting off-shore oceanographic measurements including sediment trap deployment and retrieval, in situ incubations, and Thorium-234 activity measurements. My responsibilities were rapid nitrate measurements (for incubation spikes) and in assisting with all other activities managed by my advisor.


Sediment Traps
VERTEX style Particle Interceptor Traps (PIT) were deployed at the start of each experimental cycle. Three frames consisting of 8 or 12 tubes were lowered to 150 m, 100 m, and 60 m (or 50 m).
Thorium-Uranium Disequilibrium
Estimates POC flux through 234Th:238U disequilibrium.
Remote Sensing
MODIS-AGUA imagery is used to gain synoptic snapshots of NPP, SST and SSChl.
In Situ Incubations
14CPP, nitrate uptake and ammonium uptake.
Lagrangian Particle Modeling
LTRANS package coupled to ROMS