Due to their microscopic size and the broad distribution of many of their taxa, coccoliths have become very important as index fossils for solving various stratigraphic problems. Microfossils are sensitive indicators of changes in the temperature and salinity of the ocean and sea surface water. The quantitative analysis of calcareous nannoplankton assemblages is being employed to reveal such changes. They also produce alkenones, biomarkers of great utility in reconstructing ancient temperatures.
Coccolithophores have long been thought to respond to increased ocean acidity, caused by increasing levels, by becoming less calcified. Scientists were recently surprised to learn that in fact the opposite can happen in at least some circumstances, with the model species E. huxleyi becoming 40% heavier, and more abundant, in more acidic waters.
Researchers from National Aeronautics and Space Administration Publish New Studies and Findings in the Area of Remote Sensing.
Mar 20, 2012; According to the authors of recent research from Greenbelt, Maryland, "A generalized Coccolithophore bloom classifier has...