Understanding past changes in the Earth System provides the essential context for future climate prediction. Southampton’s Palaeoceanography & Palaeoclimate research group is big and active with a critical mass of around 60 academics, post-doctoral researchers and PhD students and a suite of state-of-the-art geochemical, micropalaeontological, core-processing and numerical modeling facilities. Our research is global in scope. We work in all ocean basins on key problems in Earth history spanning the Anthropocene to the Palaeozoic.
The Palaeoceanography and palaeoclimate Research Group is equipped with state-of-the-art research laboratories.
These laboratories are used for a wide range of research purposes and upper level project work.
Palaeomagnetism and Environmental Magnetism Laboratory
The Palaeomagnetism and Environmental Magnetism Laboratory houses a list of state-of-the-art instrumentation as well as a shielded room to support palaeomagnetism, rock and mineral magnetism, magnetic stratigraphy and palaeoenvironmental-related research. With instruments including a Princeton Measurements Corporation MicroMag 3900 Vibrating Sample Magnetometer and an AGICO KLY4S Kappabridge, magnetic properties of samples can be studied in detail at a range of temperatures to determine the concentration, grain size and mineralogy of magnetic particles in samples. A 2G Enterprises Superconducting Rock Magnetometer provides the capability to rapidly and accurately measure the natural and various laboratory-induced magnetic remanence for continuous and discrete samples. For further information, contact Dr Chuang Xuan, tel: +44 (0)23 8059 6401.
Stable Isotope Ratio Mass-Spectrometry (SIRMS) Laboratory
The SIRMS laboratory was established in 1998 with NERC, HEFCE-SRIF and ESSO funds. The facilities function is the measurement of stable isotope ratios of various materials including 13C and 18O in carbonates (sediments and foraminifera), 13C and 15N in organic materials (plankton and soils), 18O in water samples and deuterium in water samples. For further information, contact Professor Paul Wilson, tel: +44 (0)23 8059 6164 or Dr Steven Bohaty, tel: +44 (0)23 8059 3040.
Scanning Electron Microscope Laboratory
The Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) facility was established in 2001, originally funded by NERC, the University of Southampton and Carl Zeiss SMT Ltd, to support high-resolution palaeoceanographical, palaeoclimatic and palaeoenvironmental research. The instrumentation includes a Leo 1450VP SEM and an Oxford Instruments X-Act 10mm2 area SDD EDS Detector, utilising the AZtecEnergy software system. A range of services are offered, including secondary electron and backscattered electron imaging, automated image acquisition, elemental mapping and qualitative and quantitative elemental spot analysis. Museum and other sensitive specimens can be safely imaged or chemically analysed using the SEM variable pressure (VP) mode.
The SEM facility is a research and teaching resource available for use by staff, postgraduate students and final year undergraduate students. The facility is also available for use by staff in other university departments and commercial clients. We have expertise in the examination of geological, metallurgical and some biological materials. For further information, contact Dr Richard Pearce, tel: +44 (0)23 8059 6477/6518.
X-Ray Diffraction Laboratory
The X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) facility located at NOCS provides a service for the qualitative or quantitative analysis of rock samples to determine bulk mineralogy and/or clay mineralogy. Samples are run on a Philips X'Pert pro XRD machine with a Cu X-ray tube. Mineral identification is undertaken using the JC PDS (powder diffraction studies) database. For further information, contact Dr Richard Pearce, tel: +44 (0)23 8059 6477.
PhD Project Titles
A multi-proxy investigation of the last great tipping point in Earth’s climate history: Ocean circulation and the onset of a bipolar glacial world
Prof. Paul Wilson, Prof Gavin Foster, Ian Bailey (University of Exeter, Camborne School of Mines)
A novel way to determine Earth’s sensitivity to greenhouse gas forcing using an ultra-fast climate model and the geological record
Dr Philip Goodwin, Prof Paul Wilson, Prof Gavin Foster
Causes and consequences of geomagnetic change: a well calibrated high-resolution study on East China Sea and Japan Sea sediments
Dr Chuang Xuan, Prof Alan Kemp, Prof Ryuji Tada (University of Tokyo)
The role of CO2 in Plio-Pleistocene climate change; revealed by orbital resolution boron isotope records
Prof Gavin Foster, Prof Paul Wilson, Prof Eelco Rohling, Dr Ian Bailey (Exeter)
Abrupt marine ecosystem change across the end-Triassic mass extinction: Insights from molecular fossils
Dr Jessica Whiteside, Prof John Marshall
Climate Change and Geomagnetic Field: New Insights from the West Iberian Margin
Dr Chuang Xuan, Prof Paul Wilson, Prof David Hodell (University of Cambridge)
Finding Earth’s thermostat: Testing the relationship between global climate, silicate weathering and marine carbonate production
Dr Christopher Pearce, Dr Steve Bohaty, Prof Paul Wilson
Global climate teleconnections and the onset of Antarctic glaciation
Prof Paul Wilson, Dr Steve Bohaty
North American climate history of the early Icehouse
Dr Steve Bohaty, Prof. Paul Wilson, Dr Peter C. Lippert (University of Utah), & Dr Dennis O. Terry (Temple University) Collaborators: Dr Hemmo Abels (Utrecht University), Dr Chuang Xuan (University of Southampton), & Dr Diederik Liebrand (University of Southampton).
Tracking changes in seasonal to millennial scale climate variability through the Eocene transition from an ice-free to ice-covered Arctic Ocean
Prof Alan Kemp, Dr Ian Harding
Testing the “Iron Hypothesis” and determining the causes of glacial-interglacial CO2 change
Prof Gavin Foster, Dr Mathis Hain, Dr Jessica Whiteside
Predicting increased frequency of extreme sea-level flooding events from Monte Carlo simulations using a novel ultra-fast climate model
Dr Philip Goodwin, Dr Ivan Haigh, Prof Eelco Rohling