If you missed the “Laser Specs for Field Hydrology and Biogeochemistry: A USGS-CUAHSI Virtual Workshop” we ran from 27 January to 28 February 2014 and you want to read our take on it in ~500 words, check it out in this week’s Eos (the newsletter of the American Geophysical Union). Co-conveners Richard Keim, Carol Kendall, and I are offer up the lessons learned from the cyber-series. Here’s a teaser:
Laser spectroscopy for analysis of stable isotopes is a rapidly emerging technology with the potential to enable new scientific investigations in hydrology and biogeochemistry. The two basic advantages of laser spectroscopy over mass spectrometry—lower instrument cost and ease of use—mean more laboratories can obtain the capability. Portability of instruments allows field deployment with online analysis of large numbers of samples outside the laboratory. However, the novelty of laser spectroscopy for isotope applications means there is little collective experience, so its strengths and limitations are not as well understood as those of mass spectrometry.
Also be on the lookout for a special USGS publication later this year that contains abstracts from the series.