by Christophe Le Gall |
Who are you ?
I’m a 32 years old PhD Student of the University of Barcelona. Before that, I’ve studied geology. I also worked as a technician in a laboratory. During this work, I discovered marine sediments and benthic foraminifera. Therefore, I decided to continue my studies with a Master degree in Marine Science, and I will finish my PhD thesis in September.
Can you describe us your job ?
My PhD focuses on studying the interaction between the atmosphere and the ocean in the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. This area is important because of both the trade winds and the coastal equatorial upwelling (of bottom waters). I especially investigate the biogenic and lithogenic fraction of the sediments. This study reaches from the early Pleistocene, 2 million years ago until the modern age. My work allows me to be able to reconstruct the evolution of the intensity of trade winds, the upwelling, the southern oceanic water intrusion and ocean fertilization by nutrients.
To perform such a study, I rely on IODP cores. I take sediment samples, than I separate the biogenic from the lithogenic fraction. I analyse the content of silica, total organic carbon or foraminifera species in the biologic part. I measure the grain sizes or analyse its nature using a X-ray Scanner in the lithogenic fraction.
Why did you choose this job ?
Since I was a child, I always want to study marine sciences. I started with studying geology, and then I specialized in Marine Science. I really enjoy these studies, so I continue to do my PhD.
What will be your tasks during the cruise ?
I will sample sediments, first for living foraminifera, and then for the grain size and stable isotope analysis (18O vs 16O, 13C vs 12C ….).
What do you like (most) in your work ?
When you get new data, it’s amazing when you are able to compare it with other scientist works. These data has their own story to tell! I really enjoy being on board too. This cruise will be my 3rd one.