Geological Oceanography Group

The Geological Oceanography Group has four faculty members. 

Craig Brown joined our Department in November 2019. His research group adopt an interdisciplinary approach for the study of benthic ecosystems utilizing the latest acoustic remote sensing techniques and seafloor sampling/imaging methods. The research involves integrating quantitative observational data sets from benthic systems to understand spatial patterns in species distributions, benthic habitats and controlling oceanographic factors, with results from the research helping to develop effective fisheries and conservation management strategies.

Paul Hill’s group takes a multi-faceted approach to the study of fine-sediment transport and distribution in the coastal ocean.  They use field studies to explore small-scale, basic processes of erosion, deposition and transport, remote sensing to investigate larger scale patterns of sediment distribution, and models to predict the fate of fine-sediment in the ocean.

Markus Kienast’s group works to describe, understand and quantify the distribution of sedimentary particles and of tracers, such as specific biomarkers or isotopes.  They use distributions of specific properties to establish mechanistic relations to ocean processes such as ocean currents, surface ocean conditions, or marine biogeochemical cycles, and they apply these mechanistic relations to sediment cores to explore variability through of ocean conditions through time, with a specific focus on the last glacial-interglacial cycle. 

Stephanie Kienast’s group unravels past ocean and climate conditions through analysis of the physical and chemical properties marine sediments.  They use this research to contribute to an advanced understanding of Earth’s climate system and its predictability in the future.