Prof. Dr H. Brinkhuis
3584 CD Utrecht
Office: Z 308
|Phone: +31 30 253 7691 |
Mobile: +31 652652689
Phone secretary: +31 30 253 2629
Fax: +31 30 253 5096
Institute of Environmental Biology, Faculty of Science, Utrecht University
Position: Chair of Marine Palaeobiology
Prof. Henk Brinkhuis new General Director at Royal NIOZ
Prof. Henk Brinkhuis has been appointed general director at NIOZ as of 1 December, succeeding Prof. Carlo Heip. Carlo Heip will retire by that date. Brinkhuis is currently the head of the Biomarine Sciences Group at the University of Utrecht. Together with deputy director Prof. Herman Ridderinkhof, he will direct the further development of the institute as well as the integration of the Centre for Estuarine and Marine Ecology (NIOO-CEME) in Yerseke with NIOZ after the merger of the two institutes that is to take place later this year.
Favorite scientist of Redmond O'Hanlon
Research interests, activities & professional results
Marine palynology. In particular the stratigraphy, palaeoceanography, and paleoecology of Mesozoic-Cenozoic organic walled dinoflagellate cysts, Cretaceous-Paleogene Extreme climates, Miocene, Pliocene, Quaternary, Paleoceanography, end-Permian extinctions. Areas of expertise: North Sea Basin, (UK, Dutch, Belgian, French, Danish & Norwegian Sectors), Nordic Seas incl. Barentsz Sea, Arctic and N. Atlantic (e.g., ODP 171, 210, Quaternary cores, IODP 302 ACEX - shipboard), Mediterranean incl. North Africa, Yemen, Indian Ocean, Vietnam, Argentinia, Gabon, Venezuela, Colombia, Southern Ocean, Tasman Region (ODP 113, 189 - shipboard), Pacific (ODP 198, 199), co-chief IODP 318 Wilkes Land, more.
Ancient global change, extreme climate transitions, biogeochemical cycles, and related biostratigraphy, (paleo)ecology, (palaeo) provincialism, biochemistry, etc. of phytoplankton, and of (organic walled) dinoflagellate(s) (cysts) in particular.
(Co-)author of >125 peer reviewed international papers, (co)-supervisor of >50 MSc theses, and >20 PhD theses, Utrecht University and elsewhere. (Co-)author of >200 professional consultant reports, LPP Foundation 1988-1996. Shipboard, and postcruise participant of many (I)ODP legs, incl. ACEX, the Arctic Drilling,and IODP Expedition 318, Wilkes Land, Antarctica (co-chief).
Membership Editorial Boards
Palaeoceanography (assistant editor)
The Open Palaeontology Journal
Journal of Micropalaeontology
The Netherlands Journal of Earth Sciences - Geologie en Mijnbouw
Bolletino della Societa Geologica Italiana
I am IODP Science Steering and Evaluation Panel (SSEP) delegate for ECORD, the European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling, and representing The Netherlands. SSEP is responsible for the scientific evaluation of drilling proposals. Lucas Lourens replaced me as ESSAC representative of The Netherlands in October 2007. I am chair of The Netherlands Ocean Drilling committee, see http://www.iodp.nl/.
I took part in the legendary The Arctic Coring Expedition (ACEX), aka IODP Expedition 302 summer 2004. Here some photos I made during the expedition. See also http://www.eso.ecord.org/expeditions/302/302.htm .
Together with Carlota Escutia (University of Granada, Spain), I have been invited as co-chief for the Wilkes Land IODP expedition 318, staff scientist Adam Klaus.
Together with Simone Galeotti (Urbino), Stephen Schellenberg (San Diego) and Roderik van der Wal (Utrecht), I am co-director of the International Summer School in Paleoclimatology (USSP) held at the University of Urbino in Italy. The school focuses on teaching young graduate students and other interested parties various aspects related to the multidisciplinary area of the paleoclimatic reconstruction and modelling, with more than 50 internationally accliamed senior scientists.
Together with Martin Pearce (StatoilHydro), Martin Head (Brock University), Joerg Pross (Frankfurt University), Jim Riding (BGS), and other colleagues I organize 1-week professional dinoflagellate cyst short courses, emphasizing taxonomy, ecology, biostratigraphy and palaeoecology in various locations around the world. These courses are based on the early ones by Bill Evitt, Graham Williams, Lew Stover and Sarah Damassa, and have been run in the new form since 1996. In recent years, courses were organized in Tuebingen, Germany (2004) and in Urbino, Italy in 2006 and 2009.
The Netherlands Academic Year Prize, 'expedition greenhouseworld'.
In 2007, our joint team from the department of Biology, faculty of Sciences, and the Earth Science department, faculty of Geosciences Utrecht University won the prestigeous prize for the best translation of top science to a broad public, with the project 'Expedition Greenhouseworld'. The 100,000 euro, plus contributions from sponsors, was spent on the production of an instructive and appealing website and DVD, together with multi-media producer ZCENE, and senior Polar traveller Marc Cornelissen. In 2008, the project culminated in taking the prize-winning highschool students on an actual expedition to Svalbard. Check here to enjoy the weblog.
WUN Palaeo-Arctic Climate and Environmentes (pACE)
Together with WUN colleagues from Penn State University, Southampton University, Leeds University, Sheffield University, Oslo University, we have formed the pACE-initiative, studying ancient Arctic climates and Environments. In 2007, a first workshop was held in Longyearbyen, Svalbard.
DARWIN Azolla Project
During the Arctic Coring Expedition (ACEX) 302 of the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) unique central Arctic drill cores have been recovered from the Lomonosov Ridge (Backman et al., 2006; Brinkhuis et al., 2006). Preliminary analyses of the laminated sediments has shown that enormous quantities of the free floating, freshwater fern Azolla grew and reproduced in situ in the mid Eocene (~48,5 Ma) Arctic Ocean for a period of at least 800 kyrs. Additional cores taken during commercial coring in the Arctic Basin and in the adjacent Nordic Seas have also been reported to contain huge amounts of Azolla remains (Brinkhuis et al., 2006).
Azolla is a free floating aquatic fern, which nowadays can be found in freshwater environments in temperate and tropical regions all over the world. It ranks among the fastest growing plants on Earth and due to its association with the nitrogen fixing cyanobacteria Anabaena azollae, it is independent of extern organic nitrogen. In that way Azolla is not only known to fix huge amounts of carbon, but as well to produce vast amounts of organic nitrogen. The nutrient, which mainly limits the growth of Azolla, is phosphorous.
From the presence of the Azolla blooms, covering the entire Arctic basin, interesting information about the prevailing environmental conditions can be derived. Due to its intolerance for saline water, its presence implies that at least the surface waters must have been fresh during extended episodes. Furthermore, it is believed that this event might have influenced global carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycles. Notably, the Azolla event occurred precisely at the transition from a Greenhouse to an Icehouse Earth.
From a biogeochemical cycling as well as from a global climate change perspective we thus identify a strong need for better constraining the capability of Azolla as a sink for atmospheric CO2 in a fresh Eocene Arctic Ocean, and assess its potential role as a regulator of regional and global nutrient cycles. For this purpose we have set up the Azolla Project, in the frame of The Netherlands Darwin initiative.