Maya Gomes (PI): I am an assistant professor in the Earth and Planetary Sciences Department at Johns Hopkins. My primary research interest is the use of sulfur isotope and other geochemical records to reconstruct the coupled biogeochemical cycling of sulfur, carbon, and oxygen across important Earth-life transitions. In order to do this, I take both a modern and ancient perspective. I use modern lakes, microbial mats, and coastal environments as natural experimental systems to explore how sulfur isotope and other geochemical signals record environmental information in sediments. Then, I apply the results to the geological record in order to explore how the sulfur cycle interacts with other biogeochemical cycles (C, P, N, Fe, etc.) to regulate Earth surface oxygen levels during the major evolutionary transitions and climate perturbations. download CV
Dana Brenner (Lab Manager): I am a research scientist with both geology and general environmental science interests. My research focuses on understanding chemical and geochemical processes in the environment. I use a combination of laboratory experimentation, fieldwork, and computational modeling to connect micro-scale reactions to macro-scale natural processes. My research projects range from evaluating metamorphic thermal signatures with carbonate clumped isotopes to quantifying watershed scale denitrification.
Minming Cui (Postdoctoral Fellow): Minming received his Ph.D. in Geochemistry from Tulane University in 2018. Minming has a background centered in geochemistry. His research is mainly focused on understanding the biogeochemical processes that mobilize and transport trace elements in the aquatic environment (e.g., anoxic and sulfidic conditions). Much of this work includes field sampling of natural waters and associated sediments, and subsequently measuring aqueous concentrations. His interests include trace metal biogeochemical cycling in the environment, isotope fractionation mechanisms, and tracking metal contamination in near-surface environments.
Rui Jin (Graduate Student): Rui is a graduate student with a background in organic and isotope geochemistry. She is interested in retrieving and interpreting ancient molecular and isotopic biosignatures preserved in the geological record. She is currently engaged in development of a system to track isotopic signatures of natural organic matter degradation and using the sulfur isotope record to study the early Earth ecosystems.
Kalev Hantsoo (Graduate Student): Kalev Hantsoo studies marine and sedimentary biogeochemical cycling in Earth's past and present. He has experience with stable isotope geochemistry and ocean modeling. He is interested in the interactions between microbial and planktonic ecology, oceanic and atmospheric chemistry, and larger-scale climatic and tectonic forcings throughout Earth history. Kalev enjoys hiking, reading and traveling.
Cecilia Howard (Undergraduate Student): Cecilia is a Earth and Planetary Sciences and Molecular and Cellular Biology double major studying sources of calcium carbonate in microbial mats in order to evaluate how lithified microbial mats record carbon isotope signatures.