Geoscience students Natalie Elking ’12 and Manique Talaia-Murray ’12 conducted summer research related to sediment cores from Antarctica. Elking is working on the organic geochemistry (carbon and nitrogen isotopes) of sub ice shelf sediments and Talaia-Murray is conducting a radiocarbon dating project using microfossils. The studies are important because they will help the scientific community understand how recent environmental changes can be placed in the context of natural variability of the system for the last 5000 years.
Both students will be venturing to Antarctica in March 2012 during the second cruise of the LARISSA project along with Geosciences professor Eugene Domack, the J.W. Johnson Family Professor of Environmental Studies, and Biology professor Mike McCormick. Two biology students will also be participating in the Antarctic cruise aboard the US Antarctic Program ship Nathaniel B. Palmer.
The project is funded from the U. S. National Science Foundation, Division of Polar Programs.