Albert Colman

Assistant Professor, Department of Geophysical Sciences
University of Chicago

My research examines microbial feedbacks in modern and ancient biogeochemical cycles.  We explore the role that microbes play in controlling atmospheric and oceanic chemistry. This microbial influence extends to the production and consumption of greenhouse gases, which provides a significant link to regulation of climate in the past, present, and future. 

Our work employs a combination of field based studies (oceanographic; hot springs; soils), laboratory microbiology and geochemistry experiments, mathematical modeling, and advanced stable isotope analytical techniques.  Our primary research targets in this realm are: (1)  Phosphorus biogeochemistry and ocean productivity; (2)  Carbon monoxide in anaerobic microbial ecosystems (e.g., hot springs, soils) and links to the chemistry of early Earth’s atmosphere; and (3)  Couplings between the marine phosphorus cycle, ocean productivity, and atmospheric oxygen and carbon dioxide levels on geologic timescales.

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