• E-mailNele.Meckler@uib.no
  • Phone+47 55 58 35 30
  • Visitor Address
    Realfagbygget, Allégaten 41
    3A15b - 3118
  • Postal Address
    Postboks 7803
    5020 Bergen

I work on climate reconstructions from marine sediments and stalagmites (cave dripstones) with a variety of geochemical methods. Recently I have focused on novel techniques to reconstruct past temperatures, most importantly clumped isotope thermometry. This method takes advantage of the fact that the distribution of isotopes within molecules depends on the formation temperature. Our state-of-the-art equipment at the stable isotope facility Farlab is specifically targeting samples where only limited material is available. This allows us to apply the method to marine microfossils (foraminifera) in order to reconstruct temperature changes in the ocean across the last 65 million years (project C4T, funded by the European Research Council).

In addition, with Yves Krüger we have established a technique that allows constraining growth temperatures of stalagmites by studying ancient drip water trapped as fluid inclusions within the calcite matrix. We are using this and other methods to reconstruct tropical temperatures across the last half million years in the project T-TRAC, funded by the Norwegian Research Council, as well as on South African stalagmites in the framework of the SapienCE Center.

Some recent publications (see CV and CRIStin for extended list):

Leutert, T.J., Auderset, A., Martínez-García, A., Modestou, S.E., Meckler, A.N., 2020, Coupled Southern Ocean cooling and Antarctic ice sheet expansion during the middle Miocene, Nature Geoscience 13, 634–639

(Reconstruction of sea surface temperature changes across a period of rapid ice expansion on Antarctica in the middle Miocene)

Meinicke, N., Ho, S.L.,Hannisdal, B., Nürnberg, D., Tripati, A., Schiebel, R., Meckler, A.N., 2020, A robust calibration of the Δ47-T relationship for foraminifers, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 270, 160-183.

(Calibration of the clumped isotope signal in planktic foraminifera)

Leutert, T.J., Sexton, P.F., Tripati, A., Piasecki, A., Ho, S.L., Meckler, A.N., 2019, Diagenetic effects on clumped isotope temperatures in fossil benthic and planktic foraminifera, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 257, 354-372.

(how stable is the clumped isotope signal when foraminifera are stored in sediments over 40 million years?)

Piasecki, A., Marchitto, T., Bernasconi,. S.M., Grauel, A.-L., Tisserand, A., Meckler, A.N., 2019, Application of Clumped Isotope Thermometry to Benthic Foraminerfera, G-cubed, doi: 10.1029/2018GC007961.

(calibration of the clumped isotope signal in benthic foraminifera)

Meckler, A.N., Affolter, S., Dublyansky, Y.V., Krüger, Y., Vogel, N., Bernasconi, S.M., Frenz, M., Kipfer, R., Leuenberger, M., Spötl, C., Carolin, S., Cobb, K.M., Moerman, J., Adkins, J.F., Fleitmann, D., 2015, Glacial–interglacial temperature change in the tropical West Pacific: A comparison of stalagmite-based paleo-thermometers, Quaternary Science Reviews 127, 90-116.

(Temperature proxy comparison in stalagmites and new estimates for glacial-interglacial temperature change in the terrestrial tropics)

Meckler, A.N., Ziegler, M., Millán, I., Breitenbach, S.F.M., Bernasconi, S., 2014, Long-term performance of the Kiel carbonate device with a new correction scheme for clumped isotope measurements, Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry 28, 1705-1715.

(Carbonate clumped isotope thermometry: Data processing scheme for small sample measurements and assessment of reproducibility)

Meckler, A.N., Sigman, D.M., Gibson, K.A., François, R., Martínez-García, A., Jaccard, S.L., Röhl, U., Peterson, L.C., Tiedemann, R., Haug, G.H, 2013, Deglacial pulses of deep-ocean silicate into the subtropical North Atlantic Ocean. Nature 495, 495-498.

(Deglacial CO2 change: Indications for a prominent role for ocean circulation)

Meckler, A.N., Clarkson, M.O., Cobb, K.M., Sodemann, H., and Adkins, J.F., 2012, Interglacial hydroclimate in the tropical West Pacific through the late Pleistocene. Science 336, 1301-1304.

(Stalagmite-based climate reconstructions: First long tropical hydroclimate record reaching back to more than 500,000 years ago)


From the CRIStin database:

Academic article
  • Show author(s) 2020. Warm Middle Miocene Indian Ocean Bottom Water Temperatures: Comparison of Clumped Isotope and Mg/Ca‐Based Estimates. Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology. 23 pages.
  • Show author(s) 2020. Fault-controlled fluid circulation and diagenesis along basin-bounding fault systems in rifts - Insights from the East Greenland rift system. Solid Earth (SE). 1987-2013.
  • Show author(s) 2020. Coupled Southern Ocean cooling and Antarctic ice sheet expansion during the middle Miocene. Nature Geoscience.
  • Show author(s) 2020. Clumped isotope thermometry in bivalve shells: a tool for reconstructing seasonal upwelling. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta.
  • Show author(s) 2020. A robust calibration of the clumped isotopes to temperature relationship for foraminifers. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 160-183.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Sensitivity of clumped isotope temperatures in fossil benthic and planktic foraminifera to diagenetic alteration. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 354-372.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Fingerprint of tropical climate variability and sea level in sediments of the Cariaco Basin during the last glacial period. Sedimentology. 1967-1988.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Application of Clumped Isotope Thermometry to Benthic Foraminifera. Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems. 2082-2090.
  • Show author(s) 2018. Reducing Uncertainties in Carbonate Clumped Isotope Analysis Through Consistent Carbonate-Based Standardization. Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems. 2895-2914.
  • Show author(s) 2017. A conceptual model for the response of tropical rainfall to orbital variations. Journal of Climate. 8375-8391.
  • Show author(s) 2017. C4T: Climate change across Cenozoic cooling steps reconstructed with clumped isotope thermometry.
  • Show author(s) 2017. A new way to reconstruct old climate.
Popular scientific lecture
  • Show author(s) 2017. New ways to reconstruct old climate.
  • Show author(s) 2017. Natürliche Datenlogger im Untergrund: Rekonstruktion von quartären Temperaturschwankungen mit Stalagmiten.
  • Show author(s) 2016. Climate detectives: deciphering clues from underground.
Academic lecture
  • Show author(s) 2019. Fluid circulation and fault-controlled diagenesis along a major syn-rift border fault system – the Dombjerg Fault and the Wollaston Forland Basin, NE Greenland.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Fluid circulation and fault-controlled diagenesis along a major syn-rift border fault system – the Dombjerg Fault and the Wollaston Forland Basin, NE Greenland.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Clumped isotope-based paleoceanography through the Cenozoic.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Clumped isotope thermometry in Cenozoic paleoceanography.
  • Show author(s) 2017. On the possibility of ice on Greenland during the Eocene-Oligocene transition.
  • Show author(s) 2017. Elevated topography enables Greenland ice to originiate during the Eocene-Oligocene transition.
  • Show author(s) 2017. Clumped isotope thermometry as a new tool to distinguish temperature and ice volume changes across critical Cenozoic boundaries.
  • Show author(s) 2017. A Conceptual Model for the Response of Tropical Rainfall to Orbital Variations.
  • Show author(s) 2016. Clumped isotope thermometry as new tool for paleoceanography.
Popular scientific article
  • Show author(s) 2016. An extended yardstick for climate variability. Nature. 626-628.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Temperature and salinity reconstructions using carbonate clumped isotope thermometry in modern bivalve shells.
  • Show author(s) 2019. Temperature and salinity reconstructions using carbonate clumped isotope thermometry in modern bivalve shells .
  • Show author(s) 2019. Coupled Mg/Ca and clumped isotope measurements confirm stable Western Pacific Warm Pool sea surface temperatures over the last 6 Myrs.
  • Show author(s) 2018. North Atlantic sea surface temperature reconstruction for the Middle Eocene Climatic Optimum.
  • Show author(s) 2017. Constraining the effects of diagenetic alteration on the clumped isotope paleothermometer.
  • Show author(s) 2017. Constraining the effects of diagenetic alteration on the clumped isotope paleothermometer.
  • Show author(s) 2017. Calibration of the clumped isotope thermometer for planktonic and benthic foraminifera.
Academic literature review
  • Show author(s) 2019. The DeepMIP contribution to PMIP4: Methodologies for selection, compilation and analysis of latest Paleocene and early Eocene climate proxy data, incorporating version 0.1 of the DeepMIP database. Geoscientific Model Development. 3149-3206.

More information in national current research information system (CRIStin)

I am currently leading a research project on clumped isotope thermometry in foraminifera: The C4T project (2015-2020) is a Starting Grant from the ERC (European Research Council).

The T-TRAC project (2017-2021) is funded by the Norwegian Research Council and focuses on stalagmite-based temperature reconstructions from Borneo in the tropical West Pacific.

Master projects are available within climate reconstruction with marine sediments or stalagmites. We use advanced methods for reconstructing temperatures, together with more traditional proxies like oxygen isotope analysis. Master projects are usually connected to larger research projects with PhDs or Postdocs. 

The stalagmites we work on are either from Borneo (Southeast Asia), where we reconstruct tropical climate changes across the Quaternary, or from South Africa, where we collaborate with archeologists at the SapienCE centre to understand how climate has affected human evolution.

We use marine sediments to reconstruct temperatures during previous warm intervals across the Cenozoic to better understand how the climate system functions under high CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere. To this end we use clumped isotope thermometry in marine microfossils (foraminifera). 

Examples of ongoing and previous master projects:

Julie Knutsen - Southern Ocean temperature during the middle Miocene reconstructed with clumped isotope thermometry (2020)

Marit Løland - Last Glacial Maximum to Holocene temperature change in the tropics determined from stalagmite fluid inclusions (2020)

Torill Brekken - New methods for temperature reconstructions from stalagmites (2019)

Anna Hauge Braaten - Reconstructing North Atlantic sea surface temperatures during Marine Isotope Stage M2 with clumped isotope thermometry (2018)

Diana Caldarescu - Seasonal temperature and salinity reconstructions in the Gulf of Panama based on clumped isotope thermometry in bivalve shells (2018)

Kristine Sleen Jenssen - Reconstructing Middle Miocene tropical sea surface temperatures with clumped isotope thermometry (2017)