PhD "The role of trace metals in the ocean - low concentrations with global impact"
The Department of Ocean System Sciences (OCS, department chair: prof. dr. Gert-Jan Reichart) is looking for a highly motivated PhD with a MSc degree in marine sciences, biogeosciences / biogeochemistry, environmental sciences or analytical chemistry to help us unravel the role of metals in the globally important Southern Ocean. Scientific research expeditions are part of the project.
LOCATION: ROYAL NIOZ-TEXEL (NL)
The department of Ocean System Sciences (OCS) aims to investigate open-ocean processes ranging from physical oceanography at multiple scales to chemical oceanography, and deep-sea ecology to paleoceanography and paleoclimatology.
We cover a wide range of scientific disciplines through experiments and data collection during sea-going oceanographic research as well as through home-based laboratory experiments and analyses.
All involved scientists rely on modern observational techniques including moorings, landers, thermistor strings, trace-metal clean samplers, and novel underwater autonomous observations.
For this research, we actively collaborate with peers in (inter)national partner institutes including the Institute for Marine and Atmospheric research Utrecht (IMAU) and the Faculty of Earth Sciences of Utrecht University, as well as e.g., MARUM - Center for Marine Environmental Sciences in Bremen and the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) in Bremerhaven, Germany.
Primary production in the open ocean can be limited by trace metal availability, particularly iron, but other metals might play a role too. The global ocean, and notably the Antarctic, is currently experiencing rapid change as temperatures are increasing and ice is melting.
However, the consequences of these changes for the fluxes and cycling of essential metals and the effect on phytoplankton are largely unknown. Novel tools such as multi-element determination via mass spectrometry and metal stable isotope analysis are now available to help unravel the role of metals in the globally important Southern Ocean.