Delft3D Phytoplankton modelling: Concepts of BLOOM

Natural phytoplankton communities usually consist of many different species with distinct characteristics. Moreover several species may have a negative impact on the aquatic ecosystem or its user function for instance due to the production of toxins.


The BLOOM phytoplankton model was specifically designed to simulate the competition of functional groups or individual species for potentially limiting resources (nutrients; light). The underlying assumption is that functional groups may become dominant either due to a high growth rate or due to a low resource requirement. Unlike in most other phytoplankton models, individual characteristics vary as a function of external conditions (variable stoichiometry). In addition to phytoplankton, BLOOM can also handle macro and benthic algae. The model has a very long track record of well over 35 years with application worldwide under highly diverse conditions including fresh, marine and transitional waters. Its concepts and many applications have been documented in a large number of scientific papers and reports.



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