03 Employing the “spider”

To acidify the seawater inside the mesocosms, GEOMAR scientists developed the “spider”. Through the small tubes of this spiny instrument, seawater enriched with carbon dioxide is pumped into the bags and distributed evenly inside them. In this way, the enclosed plankton community is exposed to future concentrations for long-term studies.

For the 2010 experiment in Svalbard, the researchers applied levels of ocean acidification that might be reached in 20, 40, 60 years or later in the future, according to estimates of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Photo: Nick Cobbing