Research

An example of some ongoing research projects:

Archean – Paleoproterozoic

Investigating mechanisms of BIF generation and the associated drawdown of bio-essential metals and phosphate, to understand patterns of nutrient availability during early microbial evolution.

Mesoproterozoic

Constraining phosphorous cycling in ferruginous basins and potential controls on the environmental distribution of early eukaryotes.

Neoproterozoic – Palaeozoic

Tracking changes in oxygen availability on marine shelves to constrain the amount of habitable space during the rise of animal life.

Modern systems

Quantifying global fluxes in biogeochemical cycles in the modern ocean and terrestrial lakes and rivers.

Techniques

Field work

We collect outcrop and core material, alongside detailed logs and geobiological data, and characterise it using petrography, as well as analytical techniques such as XRD and FTIR.

Sedimentary geochemistry

We apply a range of geochemical proxies to sediment samples, including isotopes (carbon, oxygen, sulfur, uranium, calcium and others) and trace metals (Fe speciation, REEs).

Experimental geochemistry

We recreate chemical sediments in the lab, synthesising minerals and quantifying their nucleation rates, solubility, and sorption properties using an anoxic glove box, solution analysis (spectrophotometry, ICP-MS and ICP-OES) and synchrotron techniques (XAS and nano-IR) .

Algal culturing

We test geobiological hypotheses directly, by culturing algae in synthetic seawater and monitoring growth rates and metabolic health using a coulter counter, a plate reader, SEM and cell digests.

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