Survey – Modelling chemical speciation in seawater to meet 21st century needs

To marine and other natural water chemists,

We would like your help: chemical speciation modelling tools, encompassing
pH, the carbonate system, and nutrient availability and toxicity, are
being developed for marine scientists and businesses by Working Group 145
of the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research. The working group title
is “Modelling Chemical Speciation in Seawater to Meet 21st Century Needs”
( Our efforts are supported by
3 years of funding from NERC (UK) and NSF (USA), initially, and involve an
informal consortium of groups in several countries.


We want to make sure we understand the speciation modelling needs of
industry, public sector and non-governmental organisations involved in
marine science, as well as academia. This understanding will help shape the development of the speciation model and modelling tools (computer
programs). We’d therefore be grateful if you would complete the web-based
questionnaire at the address below, to help generate a picture of the
requirements of users.

The results of this survey will be combined with those of a similar one
for mainly academic marine scientists, and what we learned at a “Town
Hall” at the AGU/ASLO Ocean Sciences 2016 meeting. These results will be
made public, and will directly inform our work, and the speciation model that we produce. (By the way, if you completed the first survey there is
no need to complete this one.)


Thank you,
David Turner and Simon Clegg (for SCOR WG 145)

If you would like more information about the activities of WG 145, and/or
the research being done in our project, please contact either David Turner (Chair of WG 145, david.turner(at), or Simon Clegg (Technical
Vice-Chair of WG 145, s.clegg(at)

The focus of our work is the calculation and measurement of pH (including
the buffers used for instrument calibration), the marine carbonate system,
low salinity waters, and environments in which composition differs from
normal seawater stoichiometry. The challenge is that chemical speciation
varies in a complex way with temperature, salinity, the amounts of
reacting species present, and often pH. The applications are many, for example: water quality, marine environmental health, nutrient availability
and toxicity, and problems related to ocean acidification. These are
outlined in a recent publication by Turner et al.: “Toward a
Quality-Controlled and Accessible Pitzer Model for Seawater and Related
Systems”, Frontiers in Marine Science 3, art. 139, 2016

Simon L. Clegg,

School of Environmental Sciences,
University of East Anglia,
Norwich NR4 7TJ, U.K.

email: s.clegg(at)
phone: +44 (0)1603 593185
fax: +44 (0)1603 591327

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