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Robert M. D'Anjou

Ph.D. Geosciences - UMass Amherst (in progress)


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My research interests involve the application of organic geochemical (biomarker and molecular marker) proxies to lake sediments to examine past changes in environmental and climatic conditions. I am most interested in developing new methods and proxies that can improve our ability to reliably reconstruct the timing and magnitude of anthropogenic impacts on past environments, ultimately helping improve our ability to effectively disentangling natural and anthropogenic signals in Holocene paleo-records. However, my interests are much broader than that, and include: crypto-tephrochronology, paleolimnology, limnology, paleoclimatology, paleoceanography, organic biogeochemistry, stable isotope geochemistry, geobiology, sedimentology, and Quaternary paleoenvironments.


I have worked on a wide range of research projects in the past, including:


         Developing 'human' biomarkers that can be reliably applied to lacustrine sediments as direct proxies for pre-historic human population dynamics.


         Development of new and improved methods for crypto-tephra isolation and quantification in sedimentary records of arctic lakes.


         Developing new and improved proxies of various anthropogenic impacts on past environments using unique molecular markers.


         Applications of crypto-tephrochronology in distal lake sediment records throughout the high-latitude North Atlantic


         Lacustrine records of Holocene paleoenvironment and paleoclimate in the Lofoten Islands, NW Norway


         Multi-proxy reconstructions of paleoenvironmental conditions spanning MIS stages 8-11 using the 3.6 mya sedimentary record of Lake El'gygytgyn, Siberian arctic.


         Tracing oil pollution related to the Deep-water Horizon/Macondo well head blowout of 2010 using hydrocarbon geochemistry to define trends in dispersion, environmental degradation, and preservation of oil from incident.


         Characterizing habitat diversity and benthic ecosystem transitions in the Northeastern Gulf of Mexico using ROV collected video footage.


         Using in situ methods to study diurnal community level coral reef metabolism, productivity, calcification and dissolution rates in Florida Bay and Puerto Rico to better understand future implications of ocean acidification on reef systems.


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