Professor John A. Higgins
Title: Associate Professor of Geosciences
Professor John Higgins' primary research interest is the evolution of the carbon cycle and the global climate system over Earth history. One focus has been on processes that control the chemical composition of seawater, and how those processes have changed on geologic timescales. Another is how on the chemistry of carbonate sediments is affected by processes that occur post-deposition. These include early diagenetic recrystallization, dolomitization and hydrothermal alteration. The tools Prof. Higgins has employed to study these include numerical models of chemical and isotopic biogeochemical cycles, as well as analysis of traditional stable isotopes of oxygen and carbon, and new isotope systems such as magnesium, calcium, and potassium.
Higgins Research Laboratory
Upcoming Semester - SPRING 2021
GEO 360 / ENV 356 - Geochemistry of the Human Environment
Humans have profoundly altered the chemistry of Earth's air, water, and soil. This course explores these changes with an emphasis on the analytical techniques used to measure the human impact. Topics include the accumulation of greenhouse gases (CO2 and CH4) in Earth's atmosphere and the contamination of drinking water at the tap and in the ground. Students will get hands on training in mass spectrometry and spectroscopy to determine the chemical composition of air, water, and soil and will participate in an outreach project aimed at providing chemical analyses of urban tap waters to residents of Trenton, NJ.
In The News
Tuesday, Feb 9, 2021Wintertime outbreaks of COVID-19 have been largely driven by whether people adhere to control measures such as mask wearing and social distancing,...
Wednesday, Jan 27, 2021Much of the earth’s carbon is trapped in soil, and scientists have assumed that potential climate-warming compounds would safely stay there for...
Thursday, Jan 7, 2021Scientists think the world's oldest ice is hiding somewhere in Antarctica. NPR science correspondent Nell Greenfieldboyce interviews Department of...
Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020The oldest ice on Earth probably is hiding somewhere in Antarctica, because this frozen continent holds ice that's hundreds of thousands and even...
Thursday, Dec 10, 2020The 2020 season also forms part of a pattern that calls into question what even constitutes an “average” season. It is the fifth consecutive year...
Thursday, Dec 10, 2020"The cause of the ice ages is one of the great unsolved problems in the geosciences,” said Daniel Sigman, the Dusenbury Professor of Geological and...
Wednesday, Dec 2, 2020Scientists using a unique combination of capabilities at the Advanced Photon Source have learned more about how meteorites affect one of the most...
Wednesday, Dec 2, 2020Participation Schedule of Geosciences Members at the 2020 AGU Fall Meeting
Monday, Nov 30, 2020
Join Professor Laure Resplandy where she will present: "Will oxygen minimum zones expand or shrink?
Well, it’s complicated, but a new study suggests that climate change makes some elements of destructive hurricanes even worse.