Colours of the Barents Sea

Barents Sea phytoplankton. Image: envisat

– like you never have seen it before.


 The waters of the Barents Sea off the northeast coast of Norway and north of Russia’s Kola Peninsula were bright with a green and blue bloom of phytoplankton when the new envisat took this image from space some weeks ago.

The special mosaic of blue-colours in the sea is due to huge amounts of phytoplankton. The phytoplankton use sunlight to convert water and CO2 into food. Some species of phytoplankton are coated with scales of calcium, which can turn the water electric blue. 

In the northern Barents Sea, these organisms are starved for sunlight much of the year, but during the summer months, they explode in colorful blooms such as this one, NASA writes on their website.