I am an environmental geochemist, who enjoys wide collaboration and likes to work with new methods and in new contexts. I currently work with colleagues on projects as diverse as the world’s oldest phytolith and plastic diagenesis, However, three themes determine where I am currently focussing my efforts.
1) I have an established speleothem-based research programme investigating palaeoclimate in central northern Africa, which has received funding from NERC (NE/J014133/1) and the Leverhulme Trust (IN-2012-113) in the past. The project also uses loess and numerical approaches to fill a critical gap in our constraint of climate change in a particularly sensitive region. This is part of a big partnership, with colleagues at Hull (Bird, Bellerby), Gottingen, Innsbruck, Salzburg, SISKA, Gabes, ONM, Sfax, Liverpool BGS and Reading.
2) An emerging key focus for me is continental carbonate “Geo-system services” for carbon budgeting / management in karst and alkaline igneous regions, and associated with hypoeralkaline residues. This develops from an intersection between previous projects funded by NERC (NE/L014211/1) and BP (UPSCALE project), and is associated with the new BCRA-funded National Cave Monitoring Centre. Again, I enjoy collaboration with a wide range of partners in this work including, the BCRA, the Woodland Trust and Aberdeen University.
3) My most established area of research is in quantitative paleoceanography of strong bottom circulation. Currently, this is dominated by IMMAGE (Investigating Miocene Mediterranean-Atlantic Gateway Exchange), an amphibious IODP – ICDP proposal. This major initiative is led by Bristol, and involves a wide range of international collaborators. I am also involved with research showing competition of NADW and AAIW during the last deglacial on the Uruguay margin, and revealing Heinrich-event-sized iceberg pulses in the mid-latitude Pacific Ocean.
Mike welcomes applications in continental carbonate systems (caves, tufa, travertine, soil carbonate, lacustrine carbonate), palaeoclimate from carbonate archives (speleothems, tufas, foraminifera), alkaline wastewater remediation or palaeoceanography.
Current Advertised positions
Current research Students
Aleksei Iurkov, (Water Sensing and Safeguarding Cluster, 2nd Supervisor), “Analysis-on-a-roll platforms for automated and high frequency remote sensing of natural geochemical fluxes”
Frances Proctor, (PANORAMA DTP, 2nd Supervisor) “Finding your Flow: using sedimentology, geochemistry and micropalaeontology to understand South Atlantic Ocean circulation”
Laura Bastianini, (Teaching Associate-linked project, 1st Supervisor) “Transient minerals and fabrics in hyperalkaline carbonate environments”
Jenny James, (UoH Energy and Environment Institute, additional supervisor). “Ocean acidification and chemical signaling in invertebrates, and their role in the Permian Extinction”.
Ambrose McCarron (NERC DTC Studentship at Sheffield: external supervisor) “The late-Quaternary frequency of ice-volcano feedbacks in the NW Pacific”.
Farrah Jarraya (University studentship at Sfax; external supervisor) “The palaeoclimate record of Quaternary soil carbonate crusts in Tunisia”.
Rick McCumskay (University studentship, 1st Supervisor) "Weathering of Marine Neustonic plastics",
Cian McGuire (University studentship + in kind support from BG Group) (1st Supervisor) “A Micropalaeontological solution to the Contourite / Turbidite problem”.
Jessica Moloney, NERC studentship, (2nd Supervisor) “Extending the palaeoflood record: assessing the viability and uncertainty in palaeoflood records”
Charlotte Stephenson, University Studentship, (2nd Supervisor) "Teleconnections and botanical evolution during the Devonian".
Victor Oty, University Fees waiver, (2nd Supervisor) "Passive remediation of steel-slag leachates"
Ashley Jones, University Studentship, (2nd Supervisor) "Zinc sequestration via passive remediation in hyperalkaline settings".
Tim Horsfield, University Studentship, (1st Supervisor) "A speleothem record of extreme winters in the northwest Balkans".
Paul Saunders University Studentship, (1st Supervisor) "Biogeochemistry of freshwater carbonates".
Angela Kelham, EPSRC CASE funding (BG Group, Ichron ltd.) (1st Supervisor) "Postmortem Transport of Benthic Foraminifera"