Underwater coral reef


Our research is aimed at understanding nutrients, trace metals and carbon cycling in the present and past oceans.

science Research area


Our research is aimed at understanding nutrients, trace metals and carbon cycling in the present and past oceans, with emphasis on silica and calcium carbonate biomineralising organisms. Our strengths lie in developing and applying trace metal and isotopic analysis techniques to samples collected from nature and grown in controlled laboratory cultures. Our current focus is on:

  • Understanding the mechanisms of trace metal and isotope incorporation into biogenically precipitated  aragonite, calcite and silica;
  • Reconstructing past and current environmental change using natural archives including foraminifera, corals, siliceous sponges and diatoms;
  • Understanding the role trace elements play in regulating phytoplankton physiology and productivity, particularly in the Southern Ocean and seas of the Australian region.


Life in the Precambrian was dominated by bacteria and archaea, organisms that rarely leave diagnostic cellular remains in the fossil record. However, hydrocarbon biomarkers, the molecular fossils of natural products such as lipids and pigments, can yield a wealth of inforĀ­mation about...

Using Porites coral cores to examine elemental and isotopic proxies to develop proxy reconstructions of the environment.


  • Dr. Neal Cantin

Utilize elemental, isotopic and radiometric proxies trapped in deep sea coral skeletons to examine past climate.


  • Associate Professor Brendan Roark

The project aims to reconstruct deep water carbonate ion and nutrient contents at millennial timescales using high sedimentation cores from the Atlantic Ocean.

Developing ultra-green hydrogen technologies

Diatoms are an important primary producer group and currently account for 40% of global primary production. The sequestration of carbon into the deep ocean by diatoms makes them key players in the modulation of atmospheric CO2 levels and global climate.
There is growing evidence from both laboratory and...



Research Fellow

Sample person

Research Fellow

Honorary Professor

Associate Director HDR

Research support officer

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Technical Officer

Technical officer

Senior Technical Officer - Mineralogy Laboratory


Phd Candidate

PhD Candidate

PhD Candidate
Geochemical Instrument Operations team
ICP-MS Facility

PhD Candidate

PhD Candidate

PhD Candidate

Visitor and affiliate

Honorary Assoc. Prof. (The Australian National University)
Honorary Professor (University of Queensland)

More information


The marine biogeochemistry group operates a state-of-the-art trace element and isotope analysis facility, equipped with advanced instrumentation.

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The marine biogeochemistry group maintains a range of field-deployable equipment and laboratories.

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The marine culture facilities encompass a range of sophisticated equipment.

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Our publications

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