Department Surface Waters - Research and Management

Drilling of Lake Van within ICDP

In this ICDP SNSF founded project we drilled two sediment cores (~600.000 years) from the highly alkaline Lake Van in Anatolia.

Within this project we investigate organic molecules that help to reveal the climate history of this lake which is situated at a central climate region. We use organic geochemical tools to quantify and AMS (accelerated mass spectrometry) for dating single organic compounds like long chain n-alkanes, sterols, fatty acids, and alkenones to reconstruct the climate history, community assemblages, and relation between allochthonous (terrestrial) and autochthonous (aquatic) compounds. Additionally, DNA analyses of haptophytes were investigated to understand relationships between species composition and temperature reconstructions (collaboration with Marco Coolen, WHOI).


Randlett, M.E., Coolen, M.J.L., Stockhecke, M.,  Pickarski, N., Litt, T., Balkema, C., Kwiecien, O., Tomonaga, Y., Wehrli, B., Schubert, C.J. 2014:
Alkenone distribution in Lake Van sediments over the last 600 kyrs: influences on temperature and haptophyte species composition. Quaternary Science Review, Vol. 104, 53-62.