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Advances in Stable Isotope Geochemistry

Earth And Planetary Sciences 566 - Fall 2020

The development of non-traditional isotope geochemistry in the past decade has greatly expanded our understanding of many facets of Earth and planetary sciences. Over 1000 papers have been published using non-traditional isotopes to study the origin of the solar system, the formation of planetary bodies, the differentiation of mantle and core, the evolution of the crust, the changes of paleo-climate, the global geochemical cycle of elements, and the genesis of natural resources. This course will survey these new isotope systems in either high-temperature igneous differentiation or low-temperature environments. It aims to help students understand the wide applications of these new isotopes in tracing chemical, biological and physical processes. The course is divided into three parts. Part I will first introduce the principles and theories of non-traditional isotopic fractionation and then it will review analytical methods that are primarily used for non-traditional isotopes such as MC-ICP-MS, TIMS and SIMS. Part II will dive into individual isotopic systems (Li, Mg, Si, Cl, Ca, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, Ge, Se, Mo, Hg, Tl and U stable isotopes) and it will focus on one or two of their main applications. Part III will be carried out in the instructor's lab for the last three weeks of the class. The instructor and the students will decide together on the one topic of the final project carried out all class members. The scope of the final project will depend on the students' own research interests and the instructor's role is to help the students to identify useful non-traditional isotope tools to advance the students' main research goals. Prereqs: EPS 441 (Introduction to Geochemistry) or EPS 446 (Stable Isotope Geochemistry), or permission of instructor.
Course Attributes: FA NSMAR NSM

Section 01

Advances in Stable Isotope Geochemistry
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