Awards and Grants

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2023-24 GeoDiscoveryNZ and ANZIC IODP/ICDP Legacy Analytical Funding (AILAF) awarded.


The ANZIC IODP/ICDP Legacy Analytical Funding (AILAF) program provides grants for projects designed to exploit the wealth of samples, data and data products generated through 50+ years of ocean and continental drilling. The grants are aimed at supporting the cost of sample processing and data analysis. This is a great funding opportunity for data analysts/mathematicians/visual data scientists/molecular and genetic analysts who may not traditionally work in or with the geosciences community. This year, GeoDiscoveryNZ and ANZIC awarded four AILAF grants within Aotearoa New Zealand:


Shane Rooyakkers (GNS Science): Magmatic Volatiles, Metals, and the Magmatic-Hydrothermal Connection at Brothers Volcano.

Shane will examine volcanic glasses from Brothers submarine Volcano, the site of IODP Expedition 376. Samples will be analysed to understand the role of the underlying magmatic system in transporting metals and volatiles, linking data with hydrothermal fluxes to trace their pathways. The research aims to shed light on ore-forming hydrothermal systems processes and improve understanding of the volcano and the impacts of volatile release during future eruptions along the Kermadec Arc.

Grace Duke (Victoria University of Wellington): Extension of stable isotope records at Site U1361 on Wilkes Land continental rise, East Antarctica.

Grace aims to investigate the efficiency of the biological pump and its changes during the Mid-Pleistocene transition (MPT) along the Wilkes Land margin in East Antarctica. This will be achieved by comparing carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) measurements to existing datasets. The research involves developing δ13C and δ15N isotope records from IODP Site U1361 for the period 1.7 - 0 Ma, as well as integrating other records to develop a continuous biogenic silica weight percent and diatom assemblage data for the last 4 million years.

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From left to right: Shane Rooyakkers, Grace Duke, Christian Oheneiser, and Catherine Beltran.

Christian Ohneiser (University of Otago): Is the stability of Antarctic Bottom Water production really under threat?

Christian will reconstruct the role of primary production in driving and responding to Quaternary climate change from IODP Site U1539, a site of high accumulation at the northern flank of the modern Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC). High resolution investigations across three key glacial-interglacial transitions will be paired with lower-resolution reconstruction spanning the past 1.4 Ma to test for a shift in frontal dynamics associated with the mid-Pleistocene transition. The biological and biogeochemical proxy records generated will calibrate the relationship between ACC dynamics and the cryosphere at times in the past when climate changed rapidly.

Catherine Beltran (University of Otago): Comparison of organic sea surface thermometers in the Southern Hemisphere.

Catherine’s project focuses on molecular thermometers to estimate sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in different oceans. Biomarkers are produced by various marine organisms and may reflect temperatures from different seasons and depths. The objective is to compare SST reconstructions from biomarkers proxies by analysing core top samples collected along latitudinal transects collected during ODP and IODP expeditions across the Indian, Pacific, Atlantic, and Southern Oceans.

GNS Science Te Pū Ao, Otago University Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo, Victoria University of Wellington Te Herenga Waka

With this funding, these researchers are poised to make significant contributions to earth science research and deepen our understanding of the complex geological and climatic processes shaping our planet.

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