Message from the Director - June 2012


Sloan Foundation Awards Grant to Deep Carbon Observatory Secretariat

The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation awarded a $2.25 million grant to the Carnegie Institution of Washington for continued support the Deep Carbon Observatory (DCO) Secretariat in 2012-2014.  Generous support from the Sloan Foundation ensures continued scientific leadership of the DCO through communication, coordination, community building, and fundraising. The Secretariat is the core of DCO administrative activity and as such it organizes meetings of the DCO advisory structure and coordinates activities and communications among the DCO Directorates, science projects, and Engagement and Data Infrastructure teams. The Secretariat seeks to build partnerships internationally with industry, institutions, large science programs, and government agencies.


DCO Scientists in the News

Jesse Ausubel was awarded an honorary degree from the University of St. Andrews in recognition of “his major contribution to the science and diplomacy of sustainable development.” The degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, was conferred to Ausubel on 21 June 2012 during the university’s 600th Anniversary celebration—St. Andrews is Scotland’s first university and the third oldest in the English-speaking world.  Ausubel, who serves on the Deep Carbon Observatory Executive Committee, is Vice President of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and Director of the Program for the Human Environment at The Rockefeller University. 


Carbon-Bearing Molecules Featured at
Sixth International Symposium on Isotopomers

The Sixth International Symposium on Isotopomers (ISI 2012) featured advances in instrumentation that are revolutionizing the field of stable isotope geochemistry. Carbon-bearing molecules with doubly-substituted rare isotopes was a persistent theme of ISI 2012, which was organized by Douglas Rumble of the Geophysical Laboratory of the Carnegie Institution of Washington and co-sponsored by the Deep Carbon Observatory.

More than 90 scientists from 14 countries participated in ISI 2012, which was held in Washington, DC on 18-22 June 2012.  Researchers spanning an unusually wide range of disciplines—including atmospheric chemistry, chemical oceanography, organic and inorganic geochemistry, and geology—were united in their commitment to use the light stable isotopes of H, C, N, O, and S to understand material cycles among the atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, and mantle that make life possible on Earth.


Future DCO Events

DCO is convening and co-sponsoring a series of upcoming workshops and meetings, including:

  • Serpentine Days Workshop: 2-6 September 2012, Porquerolles Island, France
  • ICDP Workshop for Oman Drilling Project: 13-17 September 2012, Palisades, NY, USA
  • DCO Executive Committee Meeting: 20-21 September 2012, Berlin, Germany

The Deep Carbon Observatory is also sponsoring scientific sessions and events at upcoming scientific conferences, including the Geological Society of America Annual Meeting and the American Geophysical Union Meeting. 


Craig M. Schiffries

Tel: (202) 478-8819


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