Peter T. Doran

Research Interests





I have a very strong field component to my research, which delves into various areas of the aquatic sciences. Most recently this research has focused on modern hydrological and biogeochemical processes in polar lake systems, and the use of this modern calibration in paleoenvironmental reconstruction.

I have conducted several field seasons in the Canadian High Arctic and in the Antarctic in this pursuit. Specific projects have involved sedimentology of high Arctic lakes, paleolimnology and sedimentology of perennially ice-covered Antarctic lakes, problems in Quaternary dating in the Antarctic Dry Valleys, the origin and nature of boulders and glacial till on perennial lake ice, biogeochemistry of deeply ice-covered lakes, physical controls on and ecological impact of persistent lake ice covers, modern controls on carbon isotopic signatures in lacustrine systems, and paleolake deposits in the Antarctic Dry Valleys and their significance to the search for evidence of past life on Mars.

I have also conducted research in microclimatology of polar regions using automated weather stations. This research has been mostly connected to defining the climate controls on ice covers and modeling these lake systems.

Personal Information
Aquatic Sciences Laboratory

Selected recent publications:

Doran, P.T. , Fritsen, C.H., McKay, C.P., Priscu, J.C. and Adams, E.E., 2003. Formation and character of an ancient 19 m ice cover and underlying trapped brine in an "ice-sealed" east Antarctic lake. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences , 100: 26-31.

Gooseff, M.N., Barrett, J.E., Doran, P.T. , Fountain, A.G., Lyons, W.B., Parsons, A.N., Porazinska, D.L., Virginia, R.A. and Wall, D.H., 2003. Snow patch influence on soil biogeochemical processes and invertebrate distribution in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica. Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research , 35: 95-100.

McKay, C.P., Hand, K.P., Doran, P.T. , Andersen, D.T. and Priscu, J.C., 2003. Clathrate formation and the fate of noble and biologically useful gases in Lake Vostok, Antarctica. Geophysical Research Letters , 30: Art. No. 1702.

Doran, P.T. , McKay, C.P., Clow, G.D., Dana, G.L., Fountain, A.G., Nylen, T. and Lyons, W.B., 2002. Valley floor climate observations from the McMurdo dry valleys, Antarctica, 1986-2000. Journal of Geophysical Research , 107: 4772, doi:10.1029/2001JD002045.

Doran, P.T. , Priscu, J.C., Lyons, W.B., Walsh, J.E., Fountain, A.G., McKnight, D.M., Moorhead, D.L., Virginia, R.A., Wall, D.H., Clow, G.D., Fritsen, C.H., McKay C.P. and Parsons, A.N., 2002. Antarctic climate cooling and terrestrial ecosystem response. Nature , 415: 517-520.