Meijer, Prof. Harro
Harro Meijer is chairman of the Groningen Energy and Sustainability Program (GESP), the Groningen University's umbrella organisation for all energy and sustainability research. He is a full professor of Isotope Physics at the Centre for Isotope Research (CIO), and moreover he is director of ESRIG, the energy institute of the natural sciences. The Centre for Isotope Research has a renowned laboratory for carbon-14 dating.
The abundance of the isotopes of "normal" elements such as Hydrogen, Oxygen and Carbon differs slightly between the materials they occur in, such as between plants and the air they grow in, and between water vapour in air and the snow originating from it. These small differences can give us detailed information about the origin of atmospheric greenhouse gases, but also about climate circumstances in the past. Both are being used at the CIO, for greenhouse gas measurements at station Lutjewad at the Wadden Sea coast, and on the oil- and gas platform F3 in the North Sea. Also for the climate's past, by studies on Greenland's ice cap. Meijer travels each year to Greenland to take samples from a snow layer he has produced in 2007, using a snow gun. "This way we can follow how fresh snow changes over the years as a function of time and pressure of the snow falling on top." The results of this project have been published in 2015. Meijer is very active in various outreach activities by which he is able to present his work to the general public: lectures, work shops, blogs and through the media.
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