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Light or heavy oxygen? Researcher of the University of Erlangen analyse isotope signature

Text and photos: Dr. Martina Bauchrowitz, IGB

In order to characterise a lake comprehensively, it is also necessary to understand the material flows. Dr. Alexander Frank from the GeoZentrum Nordbayern at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg is particularly interested in oxygen fluxes, i.e. how much oxygen aquatic algae release during photosynthesis and how much of this oxygen is directly reused by the algae and other aquatic organisms. Since both processes affect the isotope composition of the dissolved oxygen in different ways, the microbiologist uses a method to analyse the isotope signature.

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