Dr. Steve Lohrenz

Professor Emeritus

  • Application of remote sensing, in situ optical measurements and models for description of primary production and phytoplankton distributions
  • Optical assessment of air-sea carbon fluxes in river-dominated margins
  • Optical detection and assessment of harmful algal blooms
  • Characterization of biogeochemical constituents and their effects on optical properties in aquatic environments
  • Fine-scale distributions of photosynthetic pigments and associated microbial biomass and activity
  • Production, transformation and transport of organic matter in coastal ecosystems
  • Interrelationships among biological and physical dynamics at oceanic frontal regions
  • Single-cell techniques for characterization of growth and photosynthetic processes in phytoplankton
  • Radioisotopic tracing of algal physiological state and biochemical composition
  • Protein and nucleic acid metabolism in unicellular algae



  • Estuaries (MAR 655)
    This course is intended as a comprehensive overview of estuarine processes including physics, chemistry, biology and the impact of human activities. The importance of individual processes in regulating estuarine properties will be illustrated through comparison of different ecosystems.
  • Marine Bio-Optics (MAR 701)
    This is an upper level introduction to marine bio-optics. The course initially covers definitions and basic principles of optics, a toolbox if you will, that is required to discuss more advanced concepts. The first half of the course deals primarily with optics, and the second half covers the application of optics for the study of biological problems
  • Advanced Biological Oceanography (MAR 702)
    This course will explore current concepts in biological oceanography through a combination of lectures and discussions, relying on past and current scientific literature as source of information. Interactions between biological processes and physical, chemical and geochemical oceanography will be examined.


Selected Publications

Lohrenz, S. E., W. J. Cai, X. Chen, and M. Tuel (2008) Satellite assessment of bio-
optical properties of northern Gulf of Mexico coastal waters following hurricanes
Katrina and Rita, Sensors, 8, 4135-4150; DOI: 10.3390/s8074135.

Lohrenz, S. E., W. J. Cai, M. Dagg, D. Redalje, and J. Acker (2008) A retrospective
analysis of nutrients and phytoplankton productivity in the Mississippi River
Plume, Continental Shelf Research, doi:10.1016/j.csr.2007.06.019.

Green, R., G. Breed, M. Dagg, and S. E. Lohrenz (2008) Modeling planktonic
dynamics and response to variable nitrate loading in the Mississippi River
plume, Continental Shelf Research, doi:10.1016/j.csr.2007.02.008.

Redalje, D. G., S. E. Lohrenz, M. J. Natter, M. D. Tuel, G. J. Kirkpatrick, D. F.
Millie, G. L. Fahnenstiel, and F. M. Van Dolah (2008) The growth dynamics of
Karenia brevis within discrete blooms on the west Florida shelf, Continental Shelf
Research, 28, 24-44.

Lohrenz, S. E. and W. J. Cai (2006) Satellite ocean color assessment of air-sea
fluxes of CO2 in a river-dominated coastal margin, Geophysical Research Letters, 33,
L01601, doi:10.1029/2005GL023942.

Craig, S. E., S. E. Lohrenz, Z. Lee, K. L. Mahoney, G. J. Kirkpatrick, O. M.
Schofield, and R. G. Steward (2006) Use of hyperspectral remote sensing
reflectance for detection and assessment of the harmful alga, Karenia brevis,
Applied Optics, 45 (21): 5414-5425.

Schofield, O., J. Kerfoot, K. Mahoney, M. Oliver, S. Lohrenz, and G. Kirkpatrick
(2006) Vertical migration of the toxic dinoflagellate Karenia brevis and its impact
on ocean optics, Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, 111 (C6): Art. No. C06009,

Dagg, M., R. Benner, S. E. Lohrenz, D. Lawrence (2004) Transformation of
dissolved and particulate materials on continental shelves influenced by large
rivers: plume processes, Continental Shelf Research, 24, 833-858.

Lohrenz, S. E., C. L. Carroll, A. D. Weidemann, and M. Tuel (2003) Variations in
phytoplankton pigments, size structure and community composition related to
wind forcing and water mass properties on the North Carolina inner shelf,
Continental Shelf Research, 23, 1447-1464.

Lohrenz, S. E., D. G. Redalje, P. G. Verity, C. N. Flagg and K. V. Matulewski
(2002) Primary production on the continental shelf off Cape Hatteras, North
Carolina, Deep-Sea Research, 49, 4479-4509 (2002).