Dr. Mar Fernández-Méndez


Postdoctoral Researcher  Biological Oceanography


Room: DW-327

Phone: +49 431 600-4253
Email: mfernandez(at)geomar.de


GEOMAR Helmholtz-Zentrum für Ozeanforschung Kiel
Düsternbrooker Weg 20
24105 Kiel


Research Interests


  • Phytoplankton ecology and primary productivity
  • Marine Carbon Dioxide Removal (mCDR)
  • Artificial and natural upwelling systems
  • Climate change impacts on marine ecosystems 
  • Carbon and nutrient biogeochemistry 
  • Pelagic-benthic coupling / Carbon export
  • Microbial functional diversity 



Education and research experience

  • since October 2018: Postdoctoral researcher at GEOMAR Helmholtz-Zentrum für Ozeanforschung Kiel.

- Co-PrincipaI Investigator of sub-project WP2 "Scaling upwelling intensity with phytoplankton productivity" in the BMBF joint project CUSCO(Coastal upwelling in a changing ocean)
- Post-Doc in the ERC project Ocean artUP: Potential influence of artificial upwelling on phytoplankton communities and primary productivity.

  • 2015-2018: Postdoctoral researcher at the Norwegian Polar Institute, Tromsø, Norway. 

- Research stay at the Université Laval, Quebec, Canada (November 2016) 
- Research stay at the University of Manitoba, Canada (December 2016) 

  • 2014-2015: Research scientist specialized in Arctic marine algae and primary production at Alfred-Wegener Institut, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung. 

  • 2011-2014: Ph.D. studies in Polar Biological Oceanography at Alfred-Wegener Institut, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung, University of Bremen, Germany.

- Ph.D. Thesis: “Primary Productivity in Arctic sea ice and ocean” Grade: Magna cum laude.
Research stay at the University of Santa Cruz, California, investigating the genetic potential of Arctic microorganisms to perform nitrogen fixation (March-May 2013). 

  • 2009-2011: M.Sc. Marine Microbiology at Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, University of Bremen, Germany.  

  • 2004-2009 B.Sc. Biology, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM), Spain.



- Olsen, L.M., Duarte, P., Peralta-Ferriz, C., Kauko, H.M., Johansson, M., Peeken, I., Różańska-Pluta, M., Tatarek, A., Wiktor, J., Fernández-Méndez, M., Wagner, P.M., Pavlov, A.K., Hop, H., and Assmy, P. (2019) A red tide in the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean. Scientific Reports (Nature) 9, 9536 doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-45935-0 

 - Gonçalves Sousa, A.G., Tomasino, M.P., Duarte, P., Fernández-Méndez, M., Assmy, P., Ribeiro, H., Surkont, J., Leite, R., Pereira Leal, J., Torgo, L., and Magalhães, C. (2017) Pelagic microbial communities below drifting Arctic sea-ice during the late winter to early summer transition. Microb Ecol (2019) 78: 388. doi: 10.1007/s00248-018-01314-2

- Fernández-Méndez, M., Olsen, L.M., Kauko, H.M., Meyer, A., Rösel, A., Merkouriadi, I., Mundy, C.J., Ehn, J.K., Johansson, A.M., Wagner, P.M., et al. (2018) Algal hot spots in a changing Arctic Ocean: Sea-ice ridges and the snow-ice interface. Frontiers in Marine Science 5, 75 doi: 10.3389/fmars.2018.00075 

- Krause, J.W., Duarte, C.M., Marquez, I.A., Assmy, P.A., Fernández-Méndez, M., Wiedmann, I., Wassmann, P., Kristiansen, S., and Agustí, S. (2018) Biogenic silica production and diatom dynamics in the Svalbard region during spring. Biogeosciences 15 (21) 6503-6517 doi: 10.5194/bg-15-6503-2018

- Rapp, J.Z., Fernández-Méndez, M., Bienhold, C., and Boetius, A. (2018) Effects of ice-algal aggregate export on the connectivity of bacterial communities in the central Arctic Ocean. Frontiers in Microbiology, 9 doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2018.01035. 

- Kauko, H.M., Olsen, L.M., Duarte, P., Peeken, I., Granskog, M.A., Johnsen, G., Fernández-Méndez, M., Pavlov, A.K., Mundy,C.J., and Assmy, P. (2018) Algal colonization of young Arctic sea ice in spring. Frontiers in Marine Science. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2018.00199

- Tanner,T., Martí, J.M., Belliure, J., Fernández-Méndez, M., Molina, E., Peretó, J., and Porcar, M. (2017) Polar solar panels: Arctic and Antarctic microbiomes display similar taxonomic profiles. Environmental Microbiology Reports doi: 10.1111/1758-2229.12608 

- Lange, B.A., Katlein, C., Castellani, G., Fernández-Méndez, M., Nicolaus, M., Peeken, I., and Flores, H. (2017) Characterizing spatial variability of ice algal chlorophyll a and net primary production between sea ice habitats using horizontal profiling platforms. Frontiers in Marine Science https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2017.00349

- Assmy, P., Fernández-Méndez, M., Duarte, P., Meyer, A., Randelhoff, A., Mundy, C.J., Olsen, L.M., Kauko, H.M., Bailey, A., Chierici, M., et al. (2017) Leads in Arctic pack ice enable early phytoplankton blooms below snow-covered sea ice. Scientific Reports (Nature), 7, 40850, doi: 10.1038/srep40850 

- Olsen, L.M., Laney, S.R., Duarte, P., Kauko, H.M., Fernández‐Méndez, M., Mundy, C.J., Rösel, A., Meyer, A., Itkin, P., Cohen, L., et al. (2017) The seeding of ice-algal blooms in Arctic pack ice: the multiyear ice seed repository hypothesis. J. Geophys. Res. Biogeochemistry. doi: 10.1002/2016JG003668 

- Kauko H.M., Taskjelle, T., Assmy, P., Pavlov, A.K., Mundy, C.J., Duarte, P., Fernández‐Méndez, M., Olsen L.M., Hudson, S.R. et al. (2017) Windows in Arctic sea ice: Light transmission and ice algae in a refrozen lead. J. Geophys. Res. Biogeochemistry, 122:6, 1486–1505 doi: 10.1002/2016JG003626 

- Pavlov, A.K., Taskjelle, T., Kauko, H.M., Hamre, B., Hudson, S.R., Assmy, P., Duarte, P., Fernández‐Méndez, M., Mundy, C.J., and Granskog, M.A. (2017) Altered inherent optical properties and estimates of the underwater light field during an Arctic under-ice bloom of Phaeocystis pouchetii. J. Geophys. Res. Oceans, doi: 10.1002/2016JC012471 

- Roca-Martí, M., Puigcorbé, V., Rutgers van der Loeff, M.M., Katlein, C., Fernández-Méndez, M., Peeken, I., and Masqué, P. (2016) Carbon export fluxes and export efficiency in the central Arctic during the record sea ice minimum in 2012: a joint 234Th/238U and 210Po/210Pb study. J. Geophys. Res. Oceans, 121, 4618-4632 doi: 10.1002/ 2016JC011816 

- Fernández-Méndez, M., Turk-Kubo, K., Rapp, J.Z., Krumpen, T., Buttigieg, P.L., Zehr, J., and Boetius, A. (2016). Diazotroph diversity in sea-ice, melt ponds and water column of the Central Arctic Ocean. Front. Microbiol, 7, 1884, doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.01884 

- Lee, Y.J., Matrai, P., Friedrichs, M.A.M., Saba, V.S., Antoine, D., Ardyna, M., Asanuma, I., Babin, M., Bélanger, S., Benoıt-Gagne, M., Devred, E., Fernández-Méndez, M., et al. (2015) An assessment of phytoplankton primary productivity in the Arctic Ocean from satellite ocean color/in situ chlorophyll-a based models. J. Geophys. Res. Oceans, 120, 6508–6541, doi:10.1002/ 2015JC011018. 

- Fernández-Méndez, M., Katlein, C., Rabe, B., Nicolaus, M., Peeken, I., Bakker, K., Flores, H., and Boetius, A. (2015). Photosynthetic production in the central Arctic Ocean during the record sea ice minimum in 2012. Biogeosciences, 12, 3525–3549 doi:10.5194/bg-12-3525-2015 

- Katlein, C., Fernández-Méndez, M., Wenzhöfer, F., and Nicolaus, M. (2014). Distribution of algal aggregates under summer sea ice in the Central Arctic. Polar Biology. 10.1007/s00300-014-1634-3 

- Fernández-Méndez, M., Wenzhöfer, F., Peeken, I., Sørensen, H.L., Glud, R.N., and Boetius, A. (2014). Composition, buoyancy regulation and fate of ice algal aggregates in the Central Arctic Ocean. PLoS ONE 9(9): e107452. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0107452 

- Assmy, P., Ehn, J. K., Fernández-Méndez, M., Hop, H., Katlein, C., Sundfjord, A., Bluhm, K., Daase, M., Engel, A., Franson, A., et al. (2013). Floating ice-algal aggregates below melting Arctic sea ice. PLoS ONE 8(10): e76599. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0076599

- Boetius, A., Albrecht, S., Bakker, K., Bienhold, C., Felden, J., Fernández-Méndez, M., Hendricks, S., Katlein, C., Lalande, C., Krumpen, T., et al. (2013). Export of algal biomass from the melting Arctic sea ice. Science 339, 1430–1432. doi:10.1126/science.1231346 


Mar Fernandez-Mendez

FB 2: Marine Biogeochemie
FE Biologische Ozeanographie

+49 431 600-4533