Department of Earth Science


In memory of Jan Kosler

This week we received the very sad and unexpected news that Professor Jan Košler had passed away, only 49 years old.

Just returning from his sabbatical at the Geological Survey of Canada in Ottawa, we were all glad to have Jan back in the office. From his year in Ottawa, Jan brought back new ideas, and inspiration to develop our lab even further, and was looking forward to install all the new state-of-the-art instruments and bringing back cutting edge methodology in mass spectrometry and laser ablation techniques upon his return.

Jan graduated from Charles University, Prague in 1988 and went on to do his PhD in Glasgow, Scotland where he finished in 1993.

He became a lecturer, and in 2003 and an associate professor at Charles University, Prague. During this period he spent one year in Memorial University, Canada and two years in Bergen as a visiting research fellow.

In 2005 he got an associate professorship at the Department of Earth Science, UoB and became a full professor here in 2007.

During his time in Bergen, Jan spent one year at University of Vienna, Austria and this last year at the Geological Survey of Canada in Ottawa, Canada.

He was a true international researcher. As an internationally respected analytical geochemist Jan had a particular research interest in isotope geochemistry, isotopic dating and mass spectrometry technique development particularly in natural small-scale isotope variations.

In his research he made use of various micro-beam techniques, such as laser ablation ICP-MS or secondary ion mass spectrometry, and he was regarded as a leading expert in this field. He was a key person in the development of the ICP-MS laboratory at the Department of Earth Science, and his expertice and collaborative attitude attracted researchers and students from abroad to this analytical facility.

His research focus spanned from hydrothermal mineral deposits on the Mid-Atlantic ridge to use of isotope geochemistry for deciphering the provenance of sediments and the evolution and cycling of crustal rocks in orogenic belts. He had an enviable track record of publishing innovative analytical developments.

He was a principal investigator on a number of projects and had broad international networks. As part of his research he carried out field work in Europe,Africa,South America and Western Antarctica. Besides being an outstanding scientist, he had broad teaching experiences, in petrology, mineralogy, geochemistry, isotope geology and laser ablation techniques. Jan was a respected and very well-liked teacher and supervisor.

As a colleague Jan was a knowledgeable, warm, modest, smiling and a very pleasant person. He was hard working, but still with time for a short conversions when passing through the corridor between his office and the ICP-MS laboratory.

The passing of Jan Kosler leaves a large gap at the Department of Earth Science. He will be sorely missed.

Our thoughts are with his family, his wife Alena and his son and daughter.

Friends and colleagues at the Department of Earth science, University of Bergen.