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Research

Dana Thomas working on equipment in Iceland

Geologic Carbon Storage (GCS)

This project seeks to use isotopic tracers to understand the reactivity and fate of CO2 in the subsurface. Research includes the investigation of natural analogues for CO2 sequestration, including the Red Mountain Mining District, Livermore, CA and saline aquifers throughout the U.S. that have been naturally or intensionally exposed to elevated levels of CO2. Laboratory investigations will explore how the kinetics of isotope exchange reactions can be used to better understand reaction rates. (Maher, Bird, Brown, Benson).

view of big sur coast

Terrestrial Paleoclimate

Research in this area is focused on coupling low-temperature dating techniques such as U/Pb or 230-Th/U using the multi-collector ICP-MS and the SHIRMP-RG with the development and refinement of new paleoclimate proxies such as U and SI isotopes that are sensitive to past moisture levels (Maher).

Uranium office sign

Environmental Chemistry

Sampling mine drainage at the NSF DUSEL. Homestake Mine

General areas of interest include:

  1. the movement of U in the environment and the application of U isotope variations to understand fluid flow, contaminant transport and U mobility,
  2. the mobility of metals in the environment and the consequences of metal speciation on isotope fractionation.
landscape

Global Biogeochemical Cycles

Graduate student Kim Lau is using variations in uranium isotopes to reconstruct past seawater conditions.