The weathering of silicate minerals on the continents provides the major sink for atmospheric carbon on long time scales. The incongruent dissolution of silicate minerals in the surface environment releases cations which are transported to the oceans where divalent Ca and Mg ions are precipitated with carbonate ions as carbonate rocks, thus sinking carbon into the lithosphere. In a landmark paper, Raymo and Ruddiman proposed that by supplying fresh material to the surface the uplift of the Himalayas resulted in enhanced chemical weathering. Thus, the tectonic uplift of the Tibetan plateau caused the long term cooling of the Cenozoic resulting in the present ice house conditions. Despite this proposal being nearly 30 years ago, actualistic models which relate tectonic uplift to chemical weathering rates are lacking, with most models assuming overly simplistic "steady state" conditions and neglecting spatially and temporally variable tectonism. To remedy this I am developing combined models of landscape evolution and chemical weathering to model the composition of sediment derived from eroding landscapes. These predictions can be tested in the sedimentary rock record.
Supervisors - Dr Gareth Roberts & Dr Alex Whittaker
2018 - Present - NERC SSCP PhD student, Imperial College London
2017 - 2018 - Field & Research Assistant, CASP
2016 - 2017 - MSci Earth Sciences, Queens' College Cambridge
2013 - 2016 - BA Natural Sciences, Queens' College Cambridge