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Isotope Biogeochemistry and Gas Fluxes

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​​​​ Pfeil links Back to the working groups of the research area

The focus of our work is the investigation of key processes that regulate the flux of elements and water within the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum (SPAC) of agricultural landscapes. For this purpose, isotope techniques, methods for measuring gas fluxes and plant physiological studies are combined. The targeted combination of these approaches and their further development within the framework of interdisciplinary and multiscale projects enables the integrative analysis and quantification of element and water fluxes along the SPAC as well as the elucidation of their regulation. Currently, the working group is focusing on the role of erosion for C and N dynamics in agricultural landscapes, on the importance of rhizosphere processes for rhizodeposition and nutirient uptake, and on the water balance and water use efficiency of ecosystems.

 

C and N dynamics in agricultural landscapes 

Erosion causes a steady shift of topsoil particularly on croplands. This results in an increasingly intense, small-scale pattern of terrain positions characterized by strong differences in soil properties. The goal of our studies is to determine how these differences in soil properties affect C and N fluxes and stocks in the soil, as well as the function of these positions as sources and sinks of greenhouse gases. Special emphasis is placed on accurately quantifying the influence of soil heterogeneity and erosion state on fertilizer N dynamics and N use efficiency in the soil-plant system and the fate of assimilates in the soil.

 

Rhizosphere processes 

The root system of plants and the release of carbon compounds into the rhizosphere (root exudation) play a critical role in the uptake of nutrients from the soil. These effects are strongly interlinked with the flow of soil water, as this in turn exerts a strong influence on the distribution of root exudates and the availability of nutrients in the rhizosphere. To date, we have only fragmentary knowledge of the spatiotemporal dynamics of root exudate movement in the rhizosphere and how it interacts with soil water fluxes and root uptake of water and nutrients. Thus, our goal is to elucidate these relationships using isotopic techniques and rhizosphere imaging techniques.

 

Water balance and water use efficiency of ecosystems​ 

Extreme hydrological events, such as droughts, heavy rainfall and floods, are already affecting ecosystem C sequestration and the productivity of agricultural sites. To assess the extent to which impairments will continue to increase as a result of climate change, a much more comprehensive, quantitative, and process-based understanding of water fluxes in the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum along spatiotemporal scales from the individual plant to the landscape level is needed. We aim to contribute to this primarily by closely linking carbon and water budgets. We therefore combine novel high-frequency and automated gas flow and isotope techniques with other methodologies from the spectrum of ecosystem physiology and ecohydrology to gain an improved understanding of dynamic SPAC process feedbacks and their effects on water and carbon budgets and thus the resilience of agricultural and other ecosystems.

 

Core Infrastructure:

AgroFlux Sensor Plattform with FluxCrane

Stable isotope laboratory 

Radionuclide laboratory 

Incubation facilities

 

 

 Publications WG

MyTitle: Benefits of a robotic chamber system for determining evapotranspiration in an erosion-affected, heterogeneous cropland
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-27-3851-2023, Resolve DOI name
MyLinkPDFUrl: https://publications.zalf.de/publications/2E263649-44D4-4FA2-8A48-94B4C41B7A0D-1.pdf, PDF take a look
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MyAutoren: Dahlmann, A., Hoffmann, M., Verch, G., Schmidt, M., Sommer, M., Augustin, J., Dubbert, M. (2023)
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Benefits of a robotic chamber system for determining evapotranspiration in an erosion-affected, heterogeneous cropland

Dahlmann, A., Hoffmann, M., Verch, G., Schmidt, M., Sommer, M., Augustin, J., Dubbert, M. (2023)
MyTitle: Root but not shoot litter fostered the formation of mineral-associated organic matter in eroded arable soils
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.still.2023.105871, Resolve DOI name
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MyAutoren: Kaštovská, E., Choma, M., Angst, G., Remus, R., Augustin, J., Kolb, S., Wirth, S. (2024)
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Root but not shoot litter fostered the formation of mineral-associated organic matter in eroded arable soils

Kaštovská, E., Choma, M., Angst, G., Remus, R., Augustin, J., Kolb, S., Wirth, S. (2024)
MyTitle: The unexpected long period of elevated CH4 emissions from an inundated fen meadow ended only with the occurrence of cattail (Typha latifolia)
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.16713, Take a look
MyLinkPDFUrl: https://publications.zalf.de/publications/6374cacf-dc0c-471e-b077-c49b1c798d5d.pdf, PDF take a look
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MyAutoren: Antonijević, D., Hoffmann, M., Prochnow, A., Krabbe, K., Weituschat, M., Couwenberg, J., Ehlert, S., Zak, D., Augustin, J. (2023)
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The unexpected long period of elevated CH4 emissions from an inundated fen meadow ended only with the occurrence of cattail (Typha latifolia)

Antonijević, D., Hoffmann, M., Prochnow, A., Krabbe, K., Weituschat, M., Couwenberg, J., Ehlert, S., Zak, D., Augustin, J. (2023)
MyTitle: Response of a grassland species to dry environmental conditions from water stable isotopic monitoring: no evident shift in root water uptake to wetter soil layers
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11104-022-05703-y, Resolve DOI name
MyLinkPDFUrl: https://publications.zalf.de/publications/0b913afb-af3e-416a-b3c7-0337f4a1b39c.pdf, PDF take a look
MyTitelMehrzeilig:
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MyAutoren: Deseano Diaz, P. A., van Dusschoten, D., Kübert, A., Brüggemann, N., Javaux, M., Merz, S., Vanderborght, J., Vereecken, H., Dubbert, M., Rothfuss, Y. (2023)
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Response of a grassland species to dry environmental conditions from water stable isotopic monitoring: no evident shift in root water uptake to wetter soil layers

Deseano Diaz, P. A., van Dusschoten, D., Kübert, A., Brüggemann, N., Javaux, M., Merz, S., Vanderborght, J., Vereecken, H., Dubbert, M., Rothfuss, Y. (2023)

 Projects WG

MyTitle: NemGEm - Reduction of nitrous oxide ammonia emissions through processing of crop residues in vegetable production
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://www.zalf.de/en/forschung_lehre/projekte/Pages/details.aspx?iddp=2431, Take a look
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MyTitelMehrzeilig:
MyTextfeld: Start: 01.04.2024
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NemGEm - Reduction of nitrous oxide ammonia emissions through processing of crop residues in vegetable production

Start: 01.04.2024
MyTitle: Stable Isotope and AI supported model development for high frequency, cross scale water partitioning (ISO-SCALE)
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://www.zalf.de/en/forschung_lehre/projekte/Pages/details.aspx?iddp=2351, Take a look
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MyTitelMehrzeilig:
MyTextfeld: Start: 01.03.2023
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Stable Isotope and AI supported model development for high frequency, cross scale water partitioning (ISO-SCALE)

Start: 01.03.2023
MyTitle: COINS - Co-developing innovations for sustainable land management in West African smallholder farming systems
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://www.zalf.de/en/forschung_lehre/projekte/Pages/details.aspx?iddp=2323, Take a look
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MyTitelMehrzeilig:
MyTextfeld: Start: 01.10.2022
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COINS - Co-developing innovations for sustainable land management in West African smallholder farming systems

Start: 01.10.2022
MyTitle: Peatland soil monitoring forest
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://www.zalf.de/en/forschung_lehre/projekte/Pages/details.aspx?iddp=2292, Take a look
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MyTitelMehrzeilig:
MyTextfeld: Start: 01.06.2022
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Peatland soil monitoring forest

Start: 01.06.2022
MyTitle: ErosioN - Erosion Impact on Nitrogen Turnover and Retention in Soil
MyLinkAnsehenUrl: https://www.zalf.de/en/forschung_lehre/projekte/Pages/details.aspx?iddp=2243, Take a look
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MyTitelMehrzeilig:
MyTextfeld: Start: 01.07.2022
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ErosioN - Erosion Impact on Nitrogen Turnover and Retention in Soil

Start: 01.07.2022

 

  

Contact

 

Head of working group

Dr. Maren Dubbert
T +49 (0)33432 82-475

 

Address

Leibniz-Zentrum für
Agrarlandschaftsforschung (ZALF) e. V.

Eberswalder Straße 84
15374 Müncheberg​

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