Virgil, a PhD student at the European Institute for Marine Studies (IUEM) in Brest, France, successfully defends his doctoral thesis. Virgil’s thesis included a fantastic paper (Pasquier et al. 2017) published in PNAS earlier in the year. This paper examined the role of changing depositional conditions over the last five glacial/interglacial cycles on the formation and stable isotopic composition of pyrite in shallow marine sediments. Virgil showed that you could get enormous (>70‰), stratigraphically coherent variations in the d34S composition that change in phases with variations in sea level. This has profound implications for how we interpret d34S values from pyrites in the rock record.
Virgil is on his way to start a postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Itay Halevy (Weizmann Institute) early in 2018!