Welcome to the homepage of the Isotope Geology group at the University of Bern.

Our aim is to understand geological processes throughout Earth’s history. Therefore, we analyse a variety of radiogenic and non-traditional stable isotope compositions (e.g., Rb-Sr, Sm-Nd, U-Pb, Ca-Mo-Ti-Fe) in mantle samples (ophiolites, xenoliths, diamonds), meteorites, crustal rocks, sediments and fluids. We combine this isotope geochemical information with field observations, petrography, petrology, and various geochemical analyses to better understand cycling of elements and transfer of fluids/melts between Earth’s deep and surficial reservoirs through time, Earth’s differentiation processes and evolution of the mantle and crust. Isotope geochemical tools are also applied in collaborative projects in paleoclimatology, environmental science, and archeology.     

Here we provide a short overview of ongoing research:

  • Element recycling in subduction zones using heavy stable isotopes (Qasid Ahmad)
  • Origin and evolution of Early Archean continental crust using isotopes and trace elements (Sukalpa Chatterjee)
  • Formation and genealogy of primitive meteorites and their components in the early Solar System using mass-independent isotope variations (Jan Hoffmann)
  • Temporal evolution and spatial constrains of meteorite parent bodies inferred from isotopes. (Pascal Kruttasch)
  • Resolving Earth’s Pb paradox – using abyssal peridotites and mantle xenoliths (Diego Vivanco)
  • Constraining subduction fluids using non-traditional stable isotopes (Robert Webster)
  • Applications of isotope geochemistry in paleoclimatology, environmental science, and archeology (Igor Villa).
Singhbhum Craton
Sun setting behind 3.5Ga BIFs (Banded Iron Formation) in the Singhbhum Craton, India. Foto: Sukalpa Chatterjee
2.7Ga old pillow basalts from the Kushtagi-Hungund greenstone belt in the Eastern Dharwar Craton, India. Foto: Sukalpa Chatterjee.