ECORD Summer School 2014

"Subseafloor Biosphere: Current Advances and Future Challenges"

22 September - 2 October 2014

at the MARUM - Center for Marine Environmental Sciences and
the IODP Bremen Core Repository, University of Bremen, Germany

Foto: V. Diekamp, MARUM

Participants of the ECORD Summer School 2014

The Aim

The major goal was to bring PhD students and young Postdocs in touch with IODP at an early stage of their career, inform them about the actual research within this international scientific program, and to prepare them for future participations in IODP expeditions. Such training will be achieved by taking the summer school participants on a “virtual ship” where they get familiarized with a wide spectrum of state-of-the-art analytical technologies and core description methods according to the high standards on IODP expeditions. Therefore the course was equally balanced, with half the time dedicated to lectures and discussions and the other half to laboratory exercises.

Located on the university campus, MARUM hosts the IODP Bremen Core Repository (BCR), the only IODP core repository in Europe.

Location and Organisation

The ECORD Summer School on “Subseafloor Biosphere: Current Advances and Future Challenges” 2014 was held place from 22 September to 2 October 2014 at the MARUM – Center for Marine Environmental Sciences, Bremen University, Germany. It was organized by Prof. Dr. Dierk Hebbeln, Director of the Bremen International Graduate School for Marine Sciences (GLOMAR), Dr. Verena Heuer, senior scientist, Organic Geochemistry Group at the University of Bremen, by Prof. Dr. Kai-Uwe Hinrichs, head of the group on Organic Geochemistry at the University of Bremen and by Dr. Ursula Röhl, head of the IODP Bremen Core Repository (BCR). GLOMAR, MARUM and BCR jointly offered the unique training possibilities used for this summer school by providing laboratory facilities and by providing a seminar room equipped with 20 laptops (internet access, MatLab etc.).

Additional funding to carry out the Summer School has been provided by the Deep Carbon Observatory (DCO) .

MARUM - Center for Marine Environmental Sciences

The Topic

The deep subseafloor biosphere may be one of the largest ecosystems on our planet, driving subseafloor geochemical processes that affect ocean chemistry, the global carbon cycle, and the alteration of sediment and rocks. Its exploration means
investigation of microbial communities at the limit of life and requires advancement of microbiological and biogeochemical methods. This summer school will address the latest developments in the investigation of the deep marine biosphere.

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Structure of the Summer School

This summer school combined lab exercises on IODP-style shipboard methodologies ("virtual ship") as well as interactive lectures by world-leading scientists in the fields of geomicrobiology and biogeochemistry. Participation will prepare you for future involvement in IODP and for research on the deep subseafloor biosphere. The summer school takes advantage of the unique and integrated facilities offered by the IODP Bremen Core Repository and the laboratories of MARUM and the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology.


The weekend between the first and the second week gave the participants the possibility to join a field trip to the German Natural Oil Museum (Deutsches Erdölmuseum in Wietze) on Saturday 27 September 2014.



Rishi Ram Adhikari MARUM, Bremen 
Jan Amend University of Southern California 
Wolfgang Bach MARUM, Bremen 
Antje Boetius MPI Bremen & AWI Bremerhaven 
Gerhard Bohrmann MARUM, Bremen 
Marshall Bowles MARUM, Bremen 
Sarah Davies  University of Leicester 
Steve D’Hondt University of Rhode Island 
Bert Engelen University of Oldenburg 
Jochen Erbacher BGR, Hannover 
Verena Heuer MARUM, Bremen 
Kai-Uwe Hinrichs MARUM, Bremen 
Fumio Inagaki Kochi Core Center, JAMSTEC 
Bo Barker Jørgensen  Aarhus University 
Jens Kallmeyer University of Potsdam 
Mark Lever ETH Zurich 
Beth Orcutt Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences 
Ursula Röhl  MARUM, Bremen 
Axel Schippers BGR Hannover 
Andreas Teske University of North Carolina 
Gunther Wegener MPI Bremen 
Foto: V. Diekamp, MARUM


The 29 participants invited came from 15 different countries.