Continental geobiology ecosystems

Lacustrine systems show a broad spectrum with regard to their hydrochemistry and corresponding biological communities.
This spectrum reaches from boiling acid lakes of volcanic craters to calcium-rich freshwater lakes of karst areas and extreme alkaline soda and playa lakes of deserts. These environments form potential model oceans for past times in Earth history, when atmosphere and seawater were principally different from those of today.
The major focus in Göttingen lies on microfacies, geomicrobiology, geochemistry and paleontology of carbonate lake systems. This includes present-day salt and soda lakes (e.g., in Nevada, Indonesia, Kiritimati) as well as their fossil counterparts (e.g., miocene Ries crater lake, mesozoic fresh- to saltwater lakes).
Especially the combined approach of investigating sedimentary structures, trace elements, isotopes (13C, 18O, 87Sr/86Sr) and organisms (e.g. prokaryotes, calcareous algae, ostracodes, palynomorphs) in recent and fossil examples results in new insights concerning the biological feed-back on the Earth system.


Prof. Dr. Gernot Arp