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Isotope Fractionation of Light Elements Upon Ionization: Cosmochemical and Geochemical Implications

Isotope Fractionation of Light Elements Upon Ionization: Cosmochemical and Geochemical Implications

Objective

Light elements such as hydrogen and nitrogen present large isotope variations among solar system objects and reservoirs (including planetary atmospheres) that remain unexplained at present. Works based on theoretical approaches are model-dependent and do not reach a consensus. Laboratory experiments are required in order to develop the underlying physical mechanisms. The aim of the project is to investigate the origins of and processes responsible for isotope variations of the light elements and noble gases in the Solar System through an experimental approach involving ionization of gaseous species. We will also investigate mechanisms and processes of isotope fractionation of atmophile elements in planetary atmospheres that have been irradiated by solar UV photons, with particular reference to Mars and the early Earth. Three pathways will be considered: (i) plasma ionisation of gas mixtures (H2-CO-N2-noble gases) in a custom-built reactor; (ii) photo-ionisation and photo-dissociation of the relevant gas species and mixtures using synchrotron light; and (iii) UV irradiation of ices containing the species of interest. The results of this study will shed light on the early Solar System evolution and on processes of planetary formation.
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Host institution

UNIVERSITE DE LORRAINE

Address

Cours Leopold 34
54052 Nancy Cedex

France

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 2 810 229

Beneficiaries (1)

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UNIVERSITE DE LORRAINE

France

EU Contribution

€ 2 810 229

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 695618

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 January 2017

  • End date

    31 December 2021

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.1.

  • Overall budget:

    € 2 810 229

  • EU contribution

    € 2 810 229

Hosted by:

UNIVERSITE DE LORRAINE

France