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Ying Cui

Ph.D. candidate in Geosciences and Biogeochemistry

Advisor: Dr. Lee R. Kump

Department of Geosciences

The Pennsylvania State University

312 Deike Building, Penn State, University Park, 16802, USA

Phone: 814-321-5951

Email: yzc122@psu.edu; cuiying00@gmail.com


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Current Research Projects

1.   Using carbon isotopes of bulk TOC and compound specific as a tool to study paleoenvironment

I have been using carbon isotope variations of carbonate and organic component to untangle the environmental changes associated with Mass Extinction, Global Warming events, etc. The objective I'm interested in is End-Permian Extinction event, PETM (Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum), the Proterozoic redox state of the ocean and other critical intervals of Earth history.

2.   Modeling the rate and total amount of C during the PETM

Currently the estimated rate of C release during the PETM is 0.3-1.7 Pg/yr from an Earth System Model of Intermediate Complexity - GENIE-1 (Grid ENabled Integrated earth system model - 1) with a sediment component in the ocean that track the transport and reaction of nutrient of C and nutrient cycle while track their isotopic composition. From the pattern of calcium carbonate dissolution, we've been able to estimate the source of this greenhouse gases.

3.   Compound specific biomarkers

Higher plant leaf wax contains long-chain n-alkanes, which could be used as a paleoproxy of the atmospheric delta 13C. I'd like to use its isotopic signature to characterize the feature of the atmosphere.

4.   Rise of atmospheric O2

This is an ongoing effort that related to the 'Canfield Ocean' hypothesis.

5.   Terrestrial End-Permian Mass Extinction

I’m cooperating with Dr. Jianxin Yu and Dr. Antoine Bercovici on the terrestrial end-Permian mass extinction event, based on several well-preserved sections from the S. China Guizhou province. This is my current Ph.D. project. I will post more information once I get some preliminary results.

6.   P-T Carbon isotope excursion and Earth system model of intermediate complexity

You will probably hear what this is about during GSA in Minnesota this year in the P-T session.


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Living in State College for almost three years, I absolutely love this small town. Find out more about State College and study, research, and entertainment at Penn State etc., check out the personal.


Last updated June 23, 2011  | Home | Contact Information | © 2011 Ying Cui