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Dr Elaine Mawbey

Cenozoic Records of Foraminiferal Trace Metal Geochemistry

Supervisors: Dr Carrie Lear, Prof Paul Pearson and Dr Helen Coxall (Cardiff University).

My research is currently aimed at quantifying the factors that influence the uptake of trace metals into foraminiferal calcite, such as temperature and carbonate saturation state. I will be analysing foraminiferal calcite to generate down-core records for Mg/Ca, Sr/Ca, Cd/Ca, Li/Ca and U/Ca. This will be achieved using high resolution inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. The research will focus on three contrasting climatic events during the Cenozoic; the Eocene-Oligocene climate transition which represents the permanent establishment of the East Antarctic ice sheet, the Oligocene-Miocene transient glaciation and the Middle Eocene Climatic Optimum. My over-arching goal is to reconstruct changes in seawater carbonate saturation through time, and thus shed light on the links between these differing climate events and the global carbon cycle.