|A gas-capture buoy for measuring
bubbling gas flux in oceans and lakes
Libe Washburn, Institute for Computational Earth Systems Science, UCSB; Cyril Johnson, UCSB Physics; Chris C. Gotschalk, UCSB Marine Science Institute; and E. Thor Egland, UCSB Geological Sciences
The design, calibration, and deployment of a buoy and gas-capture assembly for measuring bubbling gas flux in oceans and lakes are described. The assembly collects gas in a chamber while continuously measuring the position of the gas-water interface that forms as gas accumulates. Interface position is determined from the differential pressure between the chamber and ambient seawater. A spar buoy provides flotation and stability to reduce vertical motion from surface waves. The gas-collection assembly and spar, referred to as a flux buoy, is suitable for deployment from small boats under conditions of light wind and small waves. The flux buoy is being used to determine the spatial distribution of natural hydrocarbon seepage off the south-central California coast. Hydrocarbon seepage from continental shelves may be an important source of atmospheric methane.
Washburn, Libe, Johnson, Cyril, Gotschalk, Chris C., and Egland, E. Thor. 2001 "A gas-capture buoy for measuring bubbling gas flux in oceans and lakes".Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology. v. 18, pp. 1411-1420, August 2001