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Dr. Susanne Elpers
Konzeptionelle Nachwuchsförderung Schwerpunkt Postdocs und Gleichstellung

+49 (0)441-798 2939

Dr. Wiebke Greeff
Konzeptionelle Nachwuchsförderung Schwerpunkt Promovierende und Internationales

Dr. Julia Anna Matz 
Konzeptionelle Nachwuchsförderung Schwerpunkt Promovierende und Internationales


Susanne Bartel

Tel.: +49 (0)441-798 4628



Seminar: Use of Ra and Rn isotopes in environmental studies

Lecturer is Dr. Hannelore Waska of Research Group for Marine Geochemistry (ICBM-MPI Bridging Group)

Radium (223Ra, 224Ra, and 226Ra) and Radon (222Rn) isotopes are commonly used as (i) geochemical clocks to calculate residence times, and (ii) tracers to establish mass balances and calculate volumetric fluxes. Their major advantages are a simple, cost-effective analysis as well as a broad versatility. They have been applied to investigate groundwater-surface water interactions, pore water fluxes across the sediment-water interface, and dynamics of hydrothermal vent systems.

In the scope of this short introductory course, we will review the basics of radiochemistry, explore the utility of the U-Th series radionuclides in geochronology and flux calcuations, and establish an overview about analytical approaches and environmental applications. The course will include a field trip to Spiekeroog Island, where samples will be collected and analyzed later at ICBM in Oldenburg.

A background in (geo)chemistry or radiochemistry is desirable, but not required. However, due to the limited space and time-intensive supervision, this course is limited to 4 participants on a first-come-first-serve basis. Please register via StudIP.

If you have any questions please contact Dr. Hannelore Waska:

Planned outline (*Can be done online upon request)

Day 1: Morning: *Introduction to Radiochemistry and Ra and Rn Geochemistry. *Basics of radiochemical analysis. Afternoon: Visit of radiochemical analytical facilities, RaDeCC calibration

Day 2: Field trip to Spiekeroog, water sampling for Ra and Rn analyses

Day 3: Measurement of samples, calculation of activities

Day 4: Morning: *Establishing models for water residence time and fluxes. Afternoon: *Presentation and discussion of results.

05.09.2022 09:00 – 09.09.2022 17:00

(Stand: 20.04.2022)