Timothy M Shanahan
Dr. Shanahan's primary area of research is in paleoclimatology and environmental change, with a focus on using novel geochemical and isotopic approaches to reconstruct past global changes from the sedimentary geological record. The goal of this research is to understand the processes controlling past environmental and paleoclimate change. Current projects focus on understanding the linkages between climate change and ecosystem dynamics on timescales ranging from annual (i.e., varves) to orbital and at sites ranging from the tropics to the high latitudes.
Dr. Shanahan's laboratory methods include organic geochemical (biomarker) and compound-specific stable isotope analysis, scanning m-XRF analysis of trace elements in geological archives (sediments, carbonates, tree rings), development of high-resolution paleoenvironmental records from annually laminated sediments and cosmogenic nuclide surface exposure dating. He is interested in utilizing multi-proxy geochemical approaches to understanding environmental changes preserved in the geological record, and in integrating paleoclimate data and modeling approaches to understand the earth system.
Dr. Shanahan's laboratory is currently under construction, but will soon contain a new designated GC-IRMS system for compound-specific hydrogen and carbon isotope analysis, as well as GC-MS and HPLC-MS systems for the identification and quantification of organic compounds in natural samples. The laboratory will also contain various facilities for the preparation and purification of lipid extracts for analysis. Additional facilities will also be available for processing of samples for cosmogenic nuclide analysis and for the study of annually- laminated sediments.
Dr. Shanahan is happy to speak with motivated prospective graduate students.