Timon Kipfer - Research Interests and Education
Speleothem fluid inclusions and their water isotopes are strong proxies to examine past climate change, as they provide direct information on past precipitation and moisture source changes. Determination of the stable isotope hydrogen (d2H) and oxygen (d18O) of the water combined with the oxygen (d18O) of the calcite allows to calculate paleotemperature estimates for time intervals up to the Pleistocene. Caves from central and western Europe (e.g. Switzerland, France) provide valuable information about these past changes and using recently developed techniques it is possible to measure water isotopes at high temporal resolution and with high precision. Finally, the use of a transfer function and/or the stable isotope paleothermometer allows to infer past temperature.
In my PhD I will set up a new fluid inclusion extraction line with the objectives to increase sample throughput and to measure samples with very low water content. Further, I will apply fluid inclusion water isotope paleo-thermometry on stalagmites from central and western European caves as well as investigate the paleo-lapse rate of water stable isotopes and temperature inferred from speleothem fluid inclusions. Another aim is to initiate an isotope survey for cave drip waters and precipitation at different sites in Switzerland and France to better understand their variability. Finally, I will use digital image analysis (Keyence VHX-7000) to improve our knowledge on the petrography of speleothem fluid inclusions.
Educational Background and Professional Experience
- From Jan 2023: PhD student in the Quaternary Geology Group of Prof. Dominik Fleitmann, University of Basel
- 2022: Master of Science in Geosciences, University of Basel2022: Student employee Quaternary Geology, University of Basel
- 2021 – 2022: Technician/Research Assistant in the Quaternary Geology Group of Prof. Dominik Fleitmann, University of Basel
- 2018 – 2021: Bachelor of Science in Geosciences, University of Basel
- 2020 – 2021: Student employee Quaternary Geology, University of Basel
- 2017 – 2018: Eidgenössische Passarelle, Gymnasium Kirschgarten, Basel
- 2016 – 2017: Civil service, Universitätsspital Basel
- 2014 – 2016: Trustee EFZ, Duttweiler Treuhand AG, Liestal
- 2011 – 2014: Apprenticeship as Trustee EFZ, Tretor AG, Liestal