School of GeoSciences

School of GeoSciences

Nancy Burns

I have moved to the University of Vienna, Department of Limnology (Battin lab). I can be reached on

PhD- "The temperature sensitivity of decomposition in different soil organic matter fractions".

Stable and recalcitrant forms of soil organic matter dominate the world's soil carbon stocks, yet are poorly represented by current models of soil carbon cycling. During my PhD I have been investigating different mechanisms of SOM stability, and their contribution to the temperature response of soil respiration. I have used incubation studies, isotopic analysis of respired CO2, physical fractionation of soil, chemical analysis of SOM and soil properties (14C dating, mass spectrometry, 13C-CPMAS-NMR, DSC, ICP-OES, FTIR), and an in situ soil warming experiment to look at the link between stability of SOM and temperature sensitivity of respiration. I hope knowledge of the processes controlling SOM stability will ultimately contribute to reducing the uncertainty in our models of the terrestrial carbon cycle.

[svalb] [lab]

My supervisors are Joanna Cloy, Dave Reay, Keith Smith, and Wilfred Otten. This PhD was funded by SAGES, the Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Society and Environment, with additional support from the School of GeoSciences.