Postdoctoral position in elemental medicine, University of Southern California, USA

We invite applications for a postdoctoral position studying the application of stable isotopes to medical research. The candidate will explore a variety of isotope systems including both ‘traditional’ stable isotope systems (e.g. δ13C, δ15N, and δ33S) and non-traditional isotope systems (e.g. δ65Cu, δ56Fe, and δ66Zn). The candidate will be responsible for developing new analytical protocols for work with biological samples, including both fluid and tissue. Experience in some aspect of elemental or stable isotope analytical chemistry is necessary. Experience in ICPMS or similar techniques is desired, particularly experience in multi-collector ICPMS. This interdisciplinary project requires a candidate with an ability to communicate clearly across a wide range of subject areas from isotope geochemistry to medicine, and with a passion for analytical excellence applied to the science of human health.

The candidate will work with an interdisciplinary team at the University of Southern California, based in the John Lab and including collaborators both from the Department of Earth Sciences and the Keck School of Medicine. Interested applicants should contact Professor Seth John,

Departure of the French HERMINE cruise in the Atlantic Ocean

The HERMINE cruise is about to depart from Mindelo (Cape Verde) and return on April 29th in Las Palmas (Gran Canaria). Onboard the French oceanographic research vessel Pourquoi Pas ?, a team of 40 scientists will study the hydrothermal activity around the Trans-Atlantic Geotraverse (TAG) site (see map below).

Indeed, the hydrothermal activity along mid-ocean ridges is a fundamental process controlling the exchances of heat and chemial species between the ocean crust and seawater. Hydrothermal vents can serve as sources or sinks for many trace elements in the ocean. It has long been thought that iron and other trace metals were mostly removed in the vicinity of the vents, being incorporated into iron oxy-hydroxide or sulfide minerals, and thus not exported into the deep ocean. However, recent studies showed that iron can be stabilized in hydrothermal plumes and transported together with other trace metals, far across the ocean, up to thousands kilometers away from the vent source.However, little is known so far on the processes occurring from the fluid exit to the distal far-field non-buoyant plume, particularly in regions where seafloor massive sulfide (SMS) deposits are observed, such as at the vicinity of slow-spreading ridges and back-arc basins.

The Hydrothermal Exploration and Research for Mineralisation In New Environments (HERMINE) GEOTRACES process study (GPrA07) aims to answer at the following questions:

  1. What are the concentrations of metals, their physical (particulate/dissolved) and chemical (redox/organic/inorganic) speciation within the plume?
  2. What role do biogeochemical processes play in controlling trace element and gas distribution in hydrothermal plumes? What are the dispersal and biogeochemical reactivity of these elements?
  3. Can we establish a reliable baseline for the actual hydrothermal plume functioning, using a multiscale chemical and microbial mapping of hydrothermal plumes in order to further assess the potential impact of seabed mining?

HERMINE studysiteFigure: Hermine cruise study site (©AS Alix, Ifremer)

Follow HERMINE cruise at:

Chief Scientist of the cruise: Y. Fouquet, C. Cathalot, and E. Pelleter

GEOTRACES scientists: H. Planquette, G. Sarthou, L.-E. Heimbürger, Catherine Jeandel

More than 1000 GEOTRACES sampling stations completed!

With the completion of the GEOTRACES–India cruise on March 3, 2017,

GEOTRACES has now successfully completed 1024 sampling stations and 94 cruises

Well done GEOTRACES!


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The GEOTRACES-India cruise completed

The GEOTRACES-India cruise onboard Sagar Kanya (SK 338, GI10) was started on January 28, 2017 from Chennai and ended on March 3, at Goa. During 35 days samples of water, sediments and aerosol have been collected in the Bay of Bengal, the Andaman Ocean, the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea in 25 sampling stations. 

In general, cruise was successful and most of the objectives of the cruise were met, as follows:

Accomplishments on cruise SK 338:

1) Sampling has been done on 25 stations during the cruise SK338.

2) A total 51 clean casts have been done during the cruise time to study biogeochemical cycles of trace elements and their isotopes.

3) McLANE is operated successfully 12 times (at 5 stations) to collect the particulate matter.

4) Continuous aerosol sampling was done while ship was on move.

5) Sampling was done at Japanese cross-over station in the Bay of Bengal

Onboard analysis of parameters:

1) Basic parameters like pH, Salinity, Alkalinity and dissolved oxygen analysis have been done onboard.

2) Ammonia, Nitrate, Nitrite, Silicate and Phosphate have been measured onboard.

3) Dissolved Zinc in the seawater has been analysed onboard using Zn-FIAS system by Fluorometric detection.

Chief Scientist: Mr. Venkatesh Chinni
GEOTRACES Scientist: Sunil Kumar Singh

2017 GI10 team2017 GI10 trackFigures: (Top) Participants to the Indian cruise SK339 (GI10); (Bottom) SK339 (GI10) cruise track.

First GEOTRACES Summer School

GSS2017 logo 01 TG 1 

Pre-registration is open!

The first GEOTRACES summer school will be held in Brest, France, between the 20th and 26th August 2017. It will bring together over 60 students and 20 world-leading international scientists.

This summer school aims at teaching the skills and knowledge necessary for a good understanding of the biogeochemical cycles of trace metals. It will allow PhD students and early career researchers to see how their work fits within the international community of GEOTRACES.

General lectures will be given by international experts in the field of the GEOTRACES program and practical workshops in the laboratory will be ran throughout the week.

Pre-registration is open until April 15th and applications will be subject to selection. Successful applicants will be notified by April 30th.

More information can be found at:


Big success of the Arctic-GEOTRACES Early Career Scientists Event

The U.S., European and Canadian Arctic GEOTRACES cruises in 2015 offered a unique and quasi-synoptic view of the Arctic ocean. Twenty seven early career scientists came together to kick off the ASLO Aquatic Sciences meeting in Honolulu, Hawai'i on 27 February 2017 to discuss emerging areas of international scientific collaboration within the Arctic GEOTRACES programme. The workshop was a special chance for early career scientists to meet their international counterparts and engage initial discussions of interdisciplinary research topics between programs.

2017 ECR event lParticipants of the Arctic-GEOTRACES Early Career Researcher Networking Event at ASLO 2017.
Click here to view the picture larger.

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 Data Assembly Centre (GDAC)


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