We study carbon cycling in aquatic systems using stable and radiocarbon isotopes and chemical characterization of major carbon pools. Current projects are focused upon Lake Superior and include quantifying the microplastic content in Lake Superior waters, surface sediments, and beaches and understanding the seasonal and interannual variability in pH and pCO2 in the lake's surface waters, and understanding the effects of storm plumes on nutrient delivery and primary productivity in the open lake. Recent past projects include an organic geochemistry study of Lake Malawi's surface sediments, the development of an in situ dual dye approach for investigating the light dose a given water parcel experiences in a river, lake, or ocean system, and the characterization of dissolved organic matter in the Laurentian Great Lakes using a suite of analytical techniques: mass spectrometry, FTIR, NMR, UV-Visible spectrometry, and fluorescence approaches.
Dye deployment in Lake Superior
Liz and John getting ready for water sampling (May 2021)
Colleague Dr, Maurer-Jones and graduate student John Fox getting ready to deploy the Manta net (May 2021)
Congratulations to John Fox for successfully defending his Master' thesis and for his new job.
Congratulations to Devin Edge, who successfully defended her Master's thesis in May 2021 and is now working at the Wisconsin DNR. Devin also won an SCSE Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award in May 2021.
Congratulations to Gabi Brinkley, who won the ACS Achievement in Environmental Chemistry Award this spring, graduated this May, and is headed to UC-Boulder for graduate school.
Congratulations and best wishes to lab technician Sarah Grosshuesch, who retired in December 2020. We will miss her.
Congratulations to Ellen Cooney on her new job as Wisconsin DNR's Lake Superior Monitoring and Sediment Coordinator. Liz Minor gave an invited talk Jan 20, 2020 at the Royal Society Scientific Meeting on Dissolved organic matter in freshwaters: nature, origins and ecological significance (Chicheley Hall, Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire, England). Her talk title: Exploring DOM in large lakes: Successes and challenges. Congratulations to Alvin Burrows for a successful defense of his master's thesis (Adsorption of Freshwater Dissolved Organic Matter to Clay and Polyethylene Particles) on July 15, 2019.
The Spring 2019 UMD Dept of Chemistry and Biochemistry award ceremony was a good one for our group. Congratulations to Rosie Lin for winning the ACS Environmental Division Undergraduate Student Award, to Ellen Cooney for winning an SCSE Outstanding GTA Award, and to Vadym Ianiev and Alvin Burrows for winning departmental Outstanding GTA Awards.
Our lab group was included in a video highlighting work on the RV Blue Heron. Please check out the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?reload=9&v=1KgxbQNosDE
Liz Minor gave a plenary address on microplastics quantification and characterization at PYRO 2018: 22nd International Symposium on Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis. June 3-8, 2018. Kyoto, Japan. Talk authors and title: Minor, E.C., E. Hendrickson, K. Schreiner, and C. Peters. 2018. Characterizing microplastics in aquatic systems: Insights (mainly) from Lake Superior.
May 2018. We have been busy sampling for microplastics in the Apostle Islands (see slideshow below).
Alvin Burrows at UMD graduation (May 2019). Congratulations Alvin!