Christof joined the research group in September 2014 and started his project about the provenance of Sumatran sediments.
He studied Geoscience at the University of Goettingen, Germany and graduated with a MSc in 2012.
During his MSc programme, Christof focussed on sedimentary Geology, and Geochemistry; his MSc thesis involved detailed work with LA-ICP-MS to characterize the framework components of arenitic sandstones e.g. to be applied in provenance analysis. Apart from lab work, Christof conducted field work in South America (Chile, Peru, Argentina, and Uruguay), Sweden, and the Dolomites (mapping) with the University of Goettingen.
For his current project, Christof carried out a 3 months lasting field work campaign to Sumatra from May till August, 2015.
About the project:
The island of Sumatra is situated at the south-western margin of the Indonesian archipelago and with a total area of about 475,000 km2, it represents the 6th biggest island of the world. Sumatra is affected by active continental margin volcanism as at the Sunda Trench to the west of Sumatra, the Indian plate is being subducted in a northeast directed movement under the Eurasian plate.
Stratigraphically, Palaeozoic meta-sedimentary rocks form the basement of Sumatra and occur mainly in the Barisan Mountains, a northwest-southwest trending mountains chain with peak up to 3800 m above sea-level. Cenozoic sedimentary rocks are widespread throughout the whole island; however, they can be grouped into fore-arc, intramontane and back-arc basins. Nevertheless, these basins are older than the current magmatic arc, represented by the Barisan Mountains. Consequently, a classical arc-related generation model of these basins can’t be applied.
The Cenozoic formations are well known in terms of lithology due to their hydrocarbon potential, but little is known about their provenance history. Regional case studies inferred a mixed source with material derived from the Malaysian peninsula as well as from local sources as the Barisans itself. However, none of them involved detrital involved detrital zircon geochronology.
This project represents a multi-proxy provenance study of sedimentary rocks from the main Cenozoic basins of Sumatra, as well as modern river sands. Detrital U-Pb zircon ages and heavy mineral assemblages are used to characterize provenance fingerprinting and trace back sedimentary pathways throughout Southeast Asia.