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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 169860, 8 pages
Research Article

Numerical Mesocosm Experimental Study on Harmful Algal Blooms of Two Algal Species in the East China Sea

Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering R&D Center of Guangdong Province, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China

Received 17 September 2014; Revised 9 December 2014; Accepted 11 December 2014

Academic Editor: Ming Zhao

Copyright © 2015 Liangsheng Zhu and Qing Wang. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


From the results of algal culture and mesocosm experiments, a numerical mesocosm experiment is designed that accounts for the effect of the marine environment (sea currents, nutrient levels, and temperature) on the harmful algal bloom (HAB) processes of Skeletonema costatum and Prorocentrum donghaiense, two of the most frequent HAB-associated species in the East China Sea. Physical and ecological environment of the waters is simulated numerically by applying a hydrodynamic-ecological-one-way-coupled marine culture box model, which is semienclosed. The algal growth rate is digitalized by a temperature-factor-optimization Droop equation. A 90-mode-day numerical mesocosm experiment for the above two species is conducted. The species were found to alternately trigger algal blooms in the experimental waters, replicating the population succession phenomenon observed in the field and confirming that the two HAB species compete for nutrients. Deductively, the numerical result shows that both the Taiwan Warm Current and the eutrophication in the adjacent water of the Yangtze River Estuary contribute to the northward movement of algal concentration centers during HAB and also suggests that the lack of nutritious supplements in the open sea limits HAB occurrences in coastal waters.