What do we do?
My group focuses on a wide variety of research topics that are centered on carbon cycle in estuarine and coastal environments. We employ state-of-the-art techniques to quantify carbonate parameters, including total titration alkalinity, total dissolved inorganic carbon, pH, and partical pressure of CO2, in water column as well as in marine sediments. The issues we intend to address include, but are not limited to, the effect of climate change on estuarine biogeochemistry, biogeochemistry of coastal hypoxia zone, and ocean acidification.
One of our ongoing projects is to study the impact of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill that occurred in 2010 on the CO2 and O2 dynamics of the northern Gulf of Mexico continental shelf waters, a project currently funded by the Gulf Research Initiative.
A second project we just started is to study the sources of organic matter that fuel benthic water hypoxia in Texas estuaries. This work is funded by Texas Sea Grant.
The PI - Dr. Xinping Hu has been broadly trained in both marine sediment geochemistry and chemical oceanography. He is interested in research topics that are related to carbon transport at both the air-sea interface and the sediment-water interface, biogeochemical controls on the fate of sedimentary carbonate, ocean acidification and its effect on calcifying organisms, and applications of stable isotope techniques in oceanographic and geochemical studies. The subjects of his work include seawater, interstatial water (or sediment porewater), marine sediments, marine plants, calcifying organisms (dead or alive). The techinques that he uses range from traditional wet chemistry to methods that utilize advanced instrumentations.
December 3, 2014: Melissa gave an oral presentation entitled "Nonconsumptive effects of predators may alter calcification and respiration rates of the Eastern oyster" at the 4th Annual MSGSO Student Research Forum and won the 2nd Place Prize. Congratualtions, Melissa!