The OUTPACE cruise took place in February-March 2015 in the Southern Tropical Pacific Ocean between Nouméa and Papeete. Plankton samples were collected at 16 sites at the surface, deep chlorophyll maximum and in vertical phytoplankton nets (35 µm mesh size). The main objective of the OUTPACE program was to study the impact of nitrogen fixation on production and fate of particulate organic matter in a gradient of oligotrophy to ultra-oligotrophy from West to East.
During this cruise, we observed a number of beautiful Pacific Ocean’s diatoms. Light microscopy images were captured on board in live samples less than 30 minutes after sampling for phytoplankton net samples, and several months after the cruise in