Dr David Lowry

David Lowry

Dr David Lowry

Reader - Stable Isotope & Greenhouse Gas

Phone: +44 1784 443105

Personal profile

As of 01/06/19 my Scopus h-index is 33, my Google Scholar h-index is 36 and my Research Gate index 39.9

Research interests

Key Research Topics: 1) Stable isotopes in the understanding of a) greenhouse gases b) past climate change c) mantle-derived mineralization; 2) Greenhouse gas sources, sampling, instrumentation and measurement.

Since setting up the atmospheric laboratory and isotopic extraction lines at RHUL in 1994 I have become heavily involved in the use of carbon isotopes as tracers of environmental change. This has mostly involved the study of methane from understanding the seasonal to long term changes in global background, to investigating and understanding local sources, and more recently studying the potential of isotopic tracers as a validation tool for the greenhouse gas reductions required by the Kyoto protocol. A recent focus was the successful modification of the GV Instruments Trace Gas system to allow automated high-precision stable carbon isotope analysis of greenhouse gases, and particularly its application to diurnal cycles of greenhouse gases in urban areas. In 2011 worked with the National Physical Laboratory and the Environment Agency on a DEFRA project to investigate methane emissions from current and closed UK Landfills, with responsibility to calculate the proportion of methane oxidation by landfill topsoils using isotopic methods.

Currently research project involvement includes NERC funding to study South Atlantic greenhouse gases and Arctic methane sources. These have resulted in the deployment of high-precision greenhouse gas analysers on the islands of Ascension, East Falkland, Barra and Jersey. In June 2012 measurements started onboard the BAS ship, the RRS James Clark Ross, to gain information about greenhouse gases sources in and around the Atlantic, in the Arctic and the Southern Ocean. I was also involved in the Eurohydros, GEOmon and IMECC European consortia on greenhouse gas / atmospheric hydrogen measurement and modeling from 2007-2011, and now as carbon isotope service provider to the INGOS European consortia for studies of methane. Current interests in the use of Cavity Ring-Down Spectroscopy (CRDS) for mobile measurement of methane emission plumes, and plume sampling for further laboratory analysis, particularly carbon isotopes.

One geological focus has been the application of stable isotopes to mantle or mantle-derived mineralization, mostly oxygen isotope work on diamond inclusions, mantle nodules, and chromites in ophiolites and layered intrusions, mostly in southern Africa, Greenland and Scotland (Rum, Shetland). Data are used to understand sources of oxygen, the heterogeneities of the mantle and temperatures of formation. More recent geological research has focussed on the use of the stable isotopes of S (pyrite) and C (carbonates, black shales) to better understand the Dalradian Supergroup of Scotland and Ireland, particularly the extreme Neoproterozoic climate fluctuations from greenhouse to icehouse between 720 and 580 Ma.

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