Gray E. Bebout, Professor, Lehigh University
Metamorphic Geochemistry and Biogeochemical Cycling
Fall/Winter, 2015

 Abitibi pillow basalts 2.7 Ga

Abitibi (2.7 Ga) pillow basalts near Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec, containing a record of aqueous chemical alteration.

Contact Information:
Gray E. Bebout, Professor
Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences
1 West Packer Avenue
Lehigh University
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania 18015-3001 USA
Office: 610-758-5831
Laboratory: 610-758-6168
Abbreviated CV, G. Bebout

October 2013 issue of ELEMENTS on "Nitrogen and its (biogeocosmo)chemical cycling"
(editors G. E. Bebout, M. L. Fogel, and P. Cartigny; see the cover of the issue here)

Recent review articles/book chapters:

Bebout, G. E., and Penniston-Dorland, S., 2015, Fluid and mass transfer at subduction interfaces—The field metamorphic record (Invited Review Article), Lithos, DOI: 10.1016/j.lithos.2015.10.007.

Bebout, G. E., Lazzeri, K. E., and Geiger, C. A., 2015,
Pathways for nitrogen cycling in Earth's crust and upper mantle: A review and new results for microporous beryl and cordierite (
Invited Centennial Article), American Mineralogist (available on MSA/AmMin website; DOI: 10.2138/am-2015-5363).

Bebout, G. E., 2013, 4.20. Chemical and Isotopic Cycling in Subduction Zones, in Rudnick, R. L., ed., The Crust, Treatise on Geochemistry (eds. H. D. Holland and K. K. Turekian, Second Edition), Elsevier-Pergamon, Oxford.

Bebout, G. E., 2012, Ch. 9. Metasomatism in subduction zones of oceanic slabs, mantle wedges, and the slab-mantle interface, in D. Harlov, and H. Austrheim, editors, Metasomatism and Metamorphism: The Role of Fluids in Crustal and Upper Mantle Processes, Springer, Lecture Notes in Earth Sciences, ISBN: 978-3-642-28393-2.

Recent Research at Lehigh University (Stable Isotope Laboratory):

Carbon cycling in subduction zones (see the photograph above), with work based in the Italian/French/Swiss Alps and Tianshan, China (collaborative with S. Angiboust, GFZ, Potsdam; P. Agard, Universitť Pierre et Marie Curie-Paris 6; Marco Scambellluri and Laura Crispini, Universitŗ di Genova; T. John, Freie Universitšt Berlin; presentations at Fall AGU, 2010, 2012, 2013; Goldschmidt Conference, 2013; GSA Annual Meeting, 2014; see Cook-Kollars et al., 2014, and Collins et al., 2015, both papers in Chemical Geology)

Nitrogen Isotope (GeoBio)chemistry:

Analytical methods (experimentation with carrier gas methods; Bebout et al., 2007, Chemical Geology)

Incorporation of N during biotic/abiotic chemical alteration of seafloor basalts (collaborative with Neil Banerjee and Matthew Izawa, Western University, Ontario, and Eizo Nakamura and Katsura Kobayashi, ISEI; presented at LPSC, 2011, 2014; AbSciCon, 2012, 2015)

Preservation of N biogeochemical signatures in ancient sedimentary and metasedimentary rocks (collaborative with Linda Godfrey, Rutgers University; paper in Geology, 2013)

Records of deep N subduction in HP and UHP metabasaltic suites (collaborative with Ralf Halama, Universitšt Potsdam; Timm John, Freie Universitšt Berlin, see paper in GCA, 2010)

Nitrogen subduction in ultramafic rocks (collaborative with Ralf Halama, Universitšt Potsdam; Timm John, Freie Universitšt Berlin; Marco Scambelluri, Universitŗ di Genova; Horst Marschall, WHOI; paper in International Journal of Earth Sciences, 2012)

Nitrogen behavior during partial melting (collaborative with Ian Buick, Stellenbosch University; Annie Palya, now at Florida International University, paper in Chemical Geology, 2010; ongoing work by Nathan Collins, Lehigh University Ph.D. student)

Storage of N in microporous phases (collaborative with Charles Geiger, Universitšt Salzburg; Kris Lazzeri, working in environmental consulting; presented at Goldschmidt Conference, 2013, Florence Italy; see Bebout et al., 2015, American Mineralogist)


Lithium isotope behavior in subduction zones, Catalina Schist, California (collaborative with Sarah Penniston-Dorland, Univ. Maryland; Philip Pogge von Strandmann and Tim Elliott, Bristol University (paper in EPSL, 2011)

Fluid-rock interactions and fluid mobility in the Appalachian Valley and Ridge, West Virginia (with Mark Evans, Central Connecticut State University; paper in Tectonophysics, 2012)

Lithium isotope geospeedometry of subduction zone fluid-rock interactions, Tianshan, China (with Timm John,Freie Universitšt Berlin, and others; paper in Nature Geoscience, 2012)

Use of lake sediment O, C, and N isotopes in paleoclimate reconstruction, New Jersey and Alaska, with Zicheng Yu, Lehigh University, and Long Li, now at University of Alberta (paper in GCA, 2008)

Tree-ring C isotope records of anthropogenic impacts on temperate forests, Pennsylvania and New Jersey (collaborative with Long Li, Univ. Alberta, Zicheng Yu, Lehigh University; paper in Chem. Geol., 2010)

Sensitivity of global carbonate-silicate models of atmospheric carbon dioxide to changes in subduction input (collaborative with Lee Kump, Penn. State University)

Sunda-Java-Timor Forearc-Trench-Arc 

We analyzed C-N concentrations and isotopic compositions of sediment [and altered seafloor basalt] recovered on ODP Legs 185 and 205 [see Sadofsky and Bebout, 2004, G-cubed; Li and Bebout, 2005, JGR and ODP Leg 205 Scientific Results), with the goals of characterizing organic sources and diagenetic history and subduction input fluxes in the Izu-Bonin-Mariana and Central American convergent margins. More recently, we are working on sediment C-N inputs into the Sunda-Java margin. Locations for DSDP/ODP Sites 211, 261, 262, and 765 are shown on the seafloor topographic map above (image above is from Smith and Sandwell Global Seafloor Topography, NOAA and Scripps Institution of Oceanography).

Recent/Ongoing Research Based in Misasa, Japan (Pheasant Memorial Laboratory, ISEI):

Boron Isotope Ion Microprobe Data for Catalina Schist and Alps UHP Metasedimentary Tourmalines [Bebout and Nakamura, Geology, 2003; Bebout et al., Chemical Geology, 2013]

Major and Trace Element and Isotopic Compositions of Subduction Zone melange units

- amphibolite-grade melange in Catalina Schist (Bebout and Barton, 2002, Chemical Geology)
- lawsonite-albite and lawsonite-blueschist grade (King et al., 2006, EPSL; King et al., 2007, Chemical Geology)

Subduction-Zone Devolatilization (Italian Alps, Turkey; with Eizo Nakamura, Takuya Moriguti, Katsura Kobayashi, ISEI; Philippe Agard, Universitť Pierre et Marie Curie-Paris 6)
- major/trace element geochemistry, SIMS work on HP/UHP eclogites (King et al., 2004, G-cubed)
- Schistes Lustres, W. Alps, devolatilization (Bebout, Agard, Kobayashi, Moriguti, Nakamura, 2013, Chemical Geology)

Stable Isotope Zoning in HP and UHP Metamorphic Porphyroblasts (collaborative with Takuya Moriguti, Tatsuki Tsujimori, Tak Kunihiro, Tsutomu Ota, Katsura Kobayashi, Eizo Nakamura, and Bill Carlson)

ISEI (Institute for Study of the Earth's Interior, Misasa, Japan)

Courses Taught:

EES 15 Volcanoes and the Ring of Fire
EES 90 recently "
Volcanoes and the Ring of Fire" or "Space, The Final Frontier" (odd-year fall)
EES 131 Introduction to Rocks and Minerals (every spring)
EES 334 Geosphere Structure and Evolution (odd-year fall)
EES 438 Petrogenetic Processes (graduate level; even-year spring)
EES 471 Stable Isotope Chemistry: Theory, Techniques, and Applications in the Earth and Environmental Sciences
    (graduate level; even-year fall)

EES 293 Undergraduate Internships
EES 393 Undergraduate Research


page last updated 11-11-15