Seasonality of Surface Chlorophyll in the Red Sea
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- Geophysical Institute 
Although the understanding of the oceanography of the Red Sea has been developed over the last few decades, but we still have a little knowledge about the influences of the physical factors on the phytoplankton activity. The purpose of the present study was initially to quantify and investigate the seasonal variation of surface chlorophyll concentration (CHL-a) at three zones in the Red Sea (north, middle and south). The second goal is to identify the controlling factors which seem to have an effect on the phytoplankton bloom during the same period of the study. To reach our goals, we use remote sensing data (surface chlorophyll, sea surface temperature and photosynthetically available radiation), oceanographic data (wind speed), and modeling data (mixed layer depth) received during the period 1998-2009. The data are analyzed using BEAM/VISAT software and statistical methods to reveal principle features of the phytoplankton bloom. The results indicate different mechanisms of the phytoplankton bloom and different importance of controlling factors at the three zones of the Red Sea.