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A free-air system for long-term stable carbon isotope labeling of adult forest trees
Grams, T. E., H. Werner, D. Kuptz, W. Ritter, F. Fleischmann, C. P. ANDERSEN, AND R. Matyssek. A free-air system for long-term stable carbon isotope labeling of adult forest trees. TREES. Springer, New York, NY, 25:187-198, (2011).
Stable carbon isotopes, in particular when employed in labeling experiments, are an ideal tool to broaden our understanding of carbon dynamics of forest ecosystems.
Stable carbon (C) isotopes, in particular employed in labeling experiments, are an ideal tool to broaden our understanding of C dynamics in trees and forest ecosystems. Here, we present a free-air exposure system, named isoFACE, designed for long-term stable C isotope labeling in the canopy of 25 m tall forest trees. Labeling of canopy air was achieved by continuous release of CO2 with a δ13C of −46.9‰. To this end, micro-porous tubes were suspended at c. 1 m distance vertically through the canopy, minimizing CO2 gradients from the exterior to the interior and allowing for C labeling exposure during periods of low wind speed. Target for CO2 concentration ([CO2]) increase was ambient +100 μmol mol−1. Canopy [CO2] stayed within 10% of the target during more than 57% of the time and resulted in a drop of δ13C in canopy air by 7.8‰. After 19 labeling days about 50% of C in phloem sugars and stem CO2 efflux were turned over and 20–30% in coarse root CO2 efflux and soil CO2. The isoFACE system successfully altered δ13C of canopy air for studying turn-over of C pools in forest trees and soils, highlighting their slow turn-over rates.
Record Details:Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Organization:U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LABORATORY
WESTERN ECOLOGY DIVISION
ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS BRANCH