Organic Geochemistry Group
The Organic Geochemistry group investigates die origin, properties, and fate of organic matter in the geosphere. We are partiucularly iinterested in organic compounds serving as carbon and energy source for micro-organisms. The microbial metabolism is a key component in the biogeochemical carbon cycle. Terminal products are carbon dioxide and methane, both greenhouse gases entering the atmosphere and influencing the Earth’s climate system. In order to fully understand these processes it is of fundamental importance having detailed knowledge of chemical structures of the organic compounds involved.
Our research focuses on:
- Molecular mechanisms of biogeochemical key processes of marine micro-organisms
- Fate and transformation processes of hydrocarbons and petroleum in the environment
- Anthropogenic substances including micro-plastics in marine ecosystems
- Reconstruction of past environments and climates using organic proxy parameters
We apply state-of-the-art analytical methods, in particular coupled chromatographic (gas and liquid chromatography) and mass spectrometric (organic and isotope mass spectrometry) techniques. In our capacity as Central Organic Analytical Facility our research tools and analytical and geochemical expertise is available to other ICBM groups.
Prof. Dr. Heinz Wilkes
Oldenburg University, Campus Wechloy