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Bess Koffman

Ph.D. Candidate/Research Assistant

Bess Koffman
Phone: 207-581-2190

Department of Earth Sciences
5790 Bryand Global Sciences Center
Room 217
University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469-5790

Description of Research

To better constrain the role of atmospheric dust in climate dynamics, I am analyzing the new WAIS Divide (West Antarctica) deep ice core for trace element chemistry and microparticle size, concentration and mineralogy.  I am working to answer questions about the temporal variability and seasonality of dust and Fe deposition, dust source for West Antarctica, and the importance of aerosol Fe in moderating atmospheric CO2.  To address these questions, I am analyzing both the deep ice core and a number of snowpits, which allow me to perform analyses that require greater amounts of particulate material.  I use ICP-SFMS to analyze trace elements, and two types of particle counters (laser light-scattering and Coulter-Counter type) to measure particles.  I am also collaborating with other scientists to use PIXE and TIMS to identify dust source geochemically and isotopically.

How do ice cores help us understand climate history?

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