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Research Unit ›Ocean Floor as RECORDER‹

Ocean Floor as Reactor
The ocean floor records signals of environmental change, providing unique information on the responses and sensitivities to perturbations in the Earth system.

Ocean-floor sediments will be investigated as an archive of past climate, element cycles and ecosystem responses, on timescales beyond instrumental observations and during climate states significantly warmer than the present, providing scenarios for assessing the consequences of warmer-than-present worlds.

Our main objectives / expected achievements are:

  • To assess the sensitivity of the Earth System to perturbations we will decipher the physical
    and biogeochemical responses to large carbon releases, changes in the hydrological cycle
    (incl. monsoon systems), and sea-level variations.
  • To determine feedbacks between climatic perturbations, water-column processes, and the
    ocean floor we will evaluate the controls on temporal variability of the biological pump, the
    consequences for carbon cycling in the ocean and carbon deposition at the ocean floor.
  • To decipher the reactions of marine ecosystems to perturbations we will determine oceanic
    ecosystem diversity and function under changing climatic and geodynamic conditions.