Desiree Lisette Roerdink


Associate Professor, Analytical Geochemistry; Contact person equality and diversity at GEO


Research groups


My research interests focus on the use of traditional and non-traditional stable isotope systems to detect chemical and biological processes involved in the formation of minerals and mineral deposits. I study environments ranging from the earliest habitats on Earth to present-day deep sea hydrothermal vents, and I integrate isotope data with geochemical and microbiological data to obtain insights into interactions between microbial and abiotic processes.

Specific research interests include:

  • The origin and paleoenvironmental significance of early Archean (3.6-3.2 billion year old) barite deposits in the Kaapvaal and Pilbara cratons 
  • Tracing biological and abiotic sulfur cycling in modern and Archean hydrothermal settings using sulfur isotopes
  • Metal stable isotopes (Fe, Cu) as proxies for sub-seafloor processes in seafloor hydrothermal systems and pollution in subaerial mining sites

PhD degree (cum laude) from Utrecht University, The Netherlands (2013): "Geology and stable isotope geochemistry of Paleoarchean sulfur: formation, preservation and geobiology of ancient pyrite and barite".  


Recent public outreach activities:

In addition, I provide regular updates about my research and teaching online:

I am also happy to lend rocks and minerals to teachers, please contact me for more information. 



I am course responsible and teaching in the following courses at the Department of Earth Science:

  • GEOV-103 Geochemical Systems: Building blocks of Earth and Life (new course from 2024, taught from 2016-2023 as Introduction to Mineralogy and Petrography)
  • GEOV-342 The Geochemical Toolbox 
  • GEOV-344 Geobiology and evolution of life on Earth 

In addition, I am teaching in SDG-207 Energy Transition (Deep sea mining) and in GEOV-109 Geochemical Systems: Earth-Life interactions (new course from 2025, taught in 2024 as Introduction to Geochemistry). 

Student supervision

PhD students:

  • PhD student Ingvild Aarrestad (2021-2025), Feedback mechanisms in hydrothermal mineral replacement reactions (co-supervisor) 
  • PhD student Apolline Samin (2020-2024), Investigating Cu isotope fractionation as a tracer for seafloor mineral deposit formation using hydrothermal experiments (main supervisor)
  • PhD student Henrike Wilborn (2018-2019), Experimental and field investigations of the potential of Cu isotopes as tracers for seafloor sulfide ore formation (main supervisor)
  • PhD student Francesca Vulcano (2018-2022), Short chain hydrocarbon degraders in hydrothermal vent systems on the Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge (co-supervisor)

MSc students:

  • MSc student Enza Magnier (2023-2025), The age of the Archean Cooke Bluff barite deposit in the Pilbara craton (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Maria Storstein (2023-2025), Preservation of fluid copper isotope ratios in a Fe-Zn rich hydrothermal chimney (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Tamsin Earnshaw (2022-2024), Devolatilization of carbonate-bearing serpentinite, Nordværnes ultramafic body, N Norway (co-supervisor)
  • MSc student Liadh Keogh (2021-2022), The geochemistry of conglomerates, chert and silica veins from the Fig Tree Group, Barberton Greenstone Belt: implications for Paleoarchean silicification processes (project at Utrecht University, external co-supervisor)
  • MSc student Matrine Jansen Berge (2021-2023), The behaviour of (heavy) metals during alkaline mine drainage from the abandoned Feragen chromite mines, East-Central Norway (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Katrine Almås (2021-2023), Tracing copper from source to sink during acid mine drainage at Røros Kobberverk, E Norway (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Idar Martin Knutsen (2021-2023), Listvenite formation at Gråberget, east-central Norway. A natural analogue for geological CO2 sequestration involving sulphide mineralization (co-supervisor)
  • MSc student Solveig Osjord (2021-2023), Visualizing three-dimensional variations in the geochemistry of black smokers (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Karen Moltubakk (2020-2022), Detecting microbial sulfate reduction coupled to anaerobic methane oxidation in hydrothermal sediments with stable isotopes (S, Fe) and trace elements (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Lotte Johannessen (2020-2022), Investigating multiple sulfur isotope variations in active hydrothermal chimneys and fluids from the Arctic Mid Ocean Ridge (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Ingvild Aarrestad (2018-2020), Tracing contamination from historical mining sites in Norway with Cu isotopes (main supervisor)
  • MSc student Maria Salem (2018-2020), Quantifying Earth system interactions in the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (co-supervisor)
  • MSc student Jan-Kristoffer Landro (2014-2016), Characterizing the distribution of microbial sulfate reduction in Loki's Castle hydrothermal system of the Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge (AMOR) (main supervisor)

Gartman, A., Payan, D., Au, M., Reeves, E.P., Jamieson, J.W., Gini, C. and Roerdink, D., 2024, Hydrothermal plume fallout, mass wasting, and volcanic eruptions contribute to sediments at Loki's Castle vent field, Mohns ridge. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, vol. 25(2), p.e2023GC011094.

Samin, A., Roerdink, D.L., Reeves, E.P., Scheffler, J., Bach, W., Beinlich, A., Jamieson, J.W. and Rouxel, O., 2024,  Preservation of hydrothermal fluid copper isotope signatures in chalcopyrite‐rich chimneys: A case study from the PACMANUS vent field, Manus Basin. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, vol. 25(2), p.e2023GC011349.

Roerdink, D.L., Vulcano, F., Landro, J.K., Moltubakk, K.E., Babel, H.R., Jørgensen, S.L., Baumberger, T., Økland, I.E., Reeves, E.P., Thorseth, I.H. and Reigstad, L.J., 2024, Hydrothermal activity fuels microbial sulfate reduction in deep and distal marine settings along the Arctic Mid Ocean Ridges. Frontiers in Marine Science, vol. 10.

Zhao, R., Babbin, A.R., Roerdink, D.L., Thorseth, I.H., & Jørgensen, S.L., 2023, Nitrite accumulation and anammox bacterial niche partitioning in Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge sediments. ISME communications, vol. 3(1), 26.

Santos, P.H.C.D., Costa, M.L.D., Roerdink, D.L., 2023, Geochemical and Isotopic Fractionation in the Hypogene Ore, Gossan, and Saprolite of the Alvo 118 Deposit: Implications for Copper Exploration in the Regolith of the Carajás Mineral Province. Minerals, vol. 13(11), 1441.

Roerdink, D.L., Ronen, Y., Strauss, H., Mason, P.R.D, 2022, Emergence of felsic crust and subaerial weathering recorded in Palaeoarchaean barite. Nature Geoscience, vol. 15, no. 3, p. 227-232.

Vulcano, F., Hahn, C.J., Roerdink, D., Dahle, H., Reeves, E.P., Wegener, G., Steen, I.H. and Stokke, R., 2022. Phylogenetic and functional diverse ANME-1 thrive in Arctic hydrothermal vents. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 98(11).

Møller, T.E., Bauer, S.L.M., Hannisdal, B., Zhao, R., Baumberger, T., Roerdink, D.L., Dupuis, A., Thorseth, I.H., Pedersen, R.B. and Jørgensen, S.L., 2022. Mapping Microbial Abundance and Prevalence to Changing Oxygen Concentration in Deep-Sea Sediments Using Machine Learning and Differential Abundance. Frontiers in Microbiology, 13.

Zhao, R., Mogollón, J.M., Roerdink, D.L., Thorseth, I.H., Økland, I. and Jørgensen, S.L., 2021. Ammonia-oxidizing archaea have similar power requirements in diverse marine oxic sediments. The ISME journal, 15(12), p.3657-3667.

Roerdink, D.L., 2020, News & Views: Redrawing the early sulfur cycle. Nature Geoscience, vol. 13, p. 526–527.

Møller, T.E., Van der Bilt, W., Roerdink, D.L., Jørgensen, S.L., 2020, Microbial community structure in Arctic lake sediments reflect variations in Holocene climate conditions. Frontiers in Microbiology, vol. 11, p. 1520.

Marques, A.F.A., Roerdink, D.L., Baumberger, T., de Ronde, C.E.J., Ditchburn, R.G., Denny, A., Thorseth, I.H., Okland, I., Lilley, M.D., Whitehouse, M.J., Pedersen, R.B., 2020, The Seven Sisters Hydrothermal System: First Record of Shallow Hybrid Mineralization Hosted in Mafic Volcaniclasts on the Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge. Minerals, vol. 10, p. 439.

Schneider, K.P., Hoffmann, J.E., Münker, C., Patyniak, M., Sprung, P., Roerdink, D., Garbe-Schönberg, D., Kröner, A., 2019, Petrogenetic evolution of metabasalts and metakomatiites of the lower Onverwacht Group, Barberton Greenstone Belt (South Africa). Chemical Geology, vol. 511, p. 152-177. 

Stensland, A., Baumberger, T., Lilley, M.D., Okland, I.E., Dundas, S.H., Roerdink, D.L., Thorseth, I.H., Pedersen, R.B., 2019, Transport of carbon dioxide and heavy metals from hydrothermal vents to shallow water by hydrate-coated gas bubbles. Chemical Geology, vol. 513, p. 120-132. 

Van der Bilt, W.G.M., Rea, B., Spagnolo, M., Roerdink, D.L., Jørgensen, S.L., Bakke, J., 2018, Novel sedimentological fingerprints link shifting depositional processes to Holocene climate transitions in East Greenland. Global and Planetary Change, vol. 164, p. 52-64.

DL Roerdink, PRD Mason, MJ Whitehouse, FM Brouwer, 2016, Reworking of atmospheric sulfur in a Paleoarchean hydrothermal system at Londozi, Barberton Greenstone Belt, Swaziland, Precambrian Research 280, 195-204

A Montinaro, H Strauss, PRD Mason, DL Roerdink, C Münker, U Schwarz-Schampera, NT Arndt, J Farquhar, NJ Beukes, J Gutzmer, 2015, Paleoarchean sulfur cycling: Multiple sulfur isotope constraints from the Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa, Precambrian Research 267, 311-322. 

DL Roerdink, SHJM van den Boorn, S Geilert, PZ Vroon, MJ van Bergen, 2015, Experimental constraints on kinetic and equilibrium silicon isotope fractionation during the formation of non-biogenic chert deposits, Chemical Geology 402, 40-51

S Geilert, PZ Vroon, DL Roerdink, P Van Cappellen, MJ van Bergen, 2014, Silicon isotope fractionation during abiotic silica precipitation at low temperatures: Inferences from flow-through experiments, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 142, 95-114

DL Roerdink, 2013, Geology and stable isotope geochemistry of Paleoarchean sulfur. Formation, preservation and geobiology of ancient pyrite and barite, Utrecht studies in earth sciences 31

DL Roerdink, PRD Mason, MJ Whitehouse, T Reimer, 2013, High-resolution quadruple sulfur isotope analyses of 3.2 Ga pyrite from the Barberton Greenstone Belt in South Africa reveal distinct environmental controls on sulfide isotopic arrays, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 117, 203-215

DL Roerdink, PRD Mason, J Farquhar, T Reimer, 2012, Multiple sulfur isotopes in Paleoarchean barites identify an important role for microbial sulfate reduction in the early marine environment, Earth and Planetary Science Letters 331, 177-186