Research focus

My research focuses on two different but related main areas: biogeochemical oceanography and paleoceanography.

In the biogeochemical oceanography I am mainly interested in understanding how certain processes work, like primary production, dissolution of particles, or mixing of different water masses. Also, I want to understand how these processes are reflected by proxies, for example stable silicon (Si) isotopes, and how we can use these proxies for paleoceanographic applications. I work with a wide variety of environmental samples, including freshwater and saline pore waters and sediments from marine and terrestrial settings as well as dissolved and particulate samples from estuaries, but also open ocean regions like the tropical eastern Pacific, the subtropical central Pacific and the Arctic Ocean.

In paleoceanography, I address questions regarding the interactions between climate and biogeochemistry. So far, I have worked mostly in the tropical eastern Pacific in the upwelling area off Peru to reconstruct variations in nutrient utilization and ocean circulation during the past 20,000 years and their influence on the oxygen minimum zone by applying stable Si and nitrogen (N) and radiogenic neodymium (Nd) and strontium (Sr) isotopes.