2017 Year in Review

The biogeochemistry group at RSES has had a dynamic year. The group continues to focus on its research strengths to answer key research problems in marine and terrestrial science. These questions include

  • What is the role the oceans in regulating global climate?
  • How do changes in the bioavailability of trace metals shape the microbial community in the ocean?
  • How do foraminifer and corals calcify?
  • What was the physical and chemical state of the ocean during the last glacial period?
  • What was the tempo and mode of evolution of complex life on Earth and can they be traced using biological information from the structure and isotopic composition of molecular fossils along with data from sedimentology, microfossils and inorganic geochemical proxies to reconstruct ancient microbial ecosystems?

We welcomed a new recruit to the biogeochemistry group: A/Prof. Leanne Armand.  Leanne is the new ANZIC (Australian and New Zealand International Ocean Discovery Program Consortium) Program Scientist. She is an expert in Southern Ocean diatom taxonomy (the identification of marine microscopic phytoplankton). She has a strong interest in the distribution of individual species related to the physical oceanic environment, and the subsequent preservation of this environmental relationship in the fossil record.

The group continued to publish high impacting papers with notable additions to the following top-ranking journals: Nature, Nature Communications, Nature Geoscience, PLOS ONE, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Journal of Human Evolution, Earth and Planetary Science Letters.

In 2017 group members continue to contribute to the undergraduate teaching program within RSES. Courses taught by academic group members include: Marine biogeochemistry, Palaeoclimatology and Climate Change, Coral Reef Field Studies, Sedimentology and Stratigraphy and The Blue Planet.