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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.




Stable isotopes were measured in the groundwaters of the Salt River Valley basin in central Arizona to explore the utility of stable isotopes for sourcing recharge waters and engineering better well designs. Delta values for the sampled groundwaters range from -7.6‰ to -10‰ in 18O and -60‰ to -91‰ in D and display displacements off the global meteoric water line indicative of surficial evaporation during river transport into the area. Groundwater in the basin is all derived from top-down river recharge; there is no evidence of ancient playa waters even in the playa deposits. The Salt and Verde Rivers are …

Contributors
Bond, Angela Nicole, Knauth, Paul, Hartnett, Hilairy, et al.
Created Date
2010

Molybdenum and uranium isotope variations are potentially powerful tools for reconstructing the paleoredox history of seawater. Reliable application and interpretation of these proxies requires not only detailed knowledge about the fractionation factors that control the distribution of molybdenum and uranium isotopes in the marine system, but also a thorough understanding of the diagenetic processes that may affect molybdenum and uranium isotopes entering the rock record. Using samples from the Black Sea water column, the first water column profile of 238U/235U variations from a modern euxinic basin has been measured. This profile allows the direct determination of the 238U/235U fractionation factor …

Contributors
Romaniello, Stephen, Anbar, Ariel, Hartnett, Hilairy, et al.
Created Date
2012

Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are critical components of arid and semiarid environments and provide the primary sources of bioavailable macronutrients and increase micronutrient availability to their surrounding ecosystems. BSCs are composed of a variety of microorganisms that perform a wide range of physiological processes requiring a multitude of bioessential micronutrients, such as iron, copper, and molybdenum. This work investigated the effects of BSC activity on soil solution concentrations of bioessential elements and examined the microbial production of organic chelators, called siderophores. I found that aluminum, vanadium, copper, zinc, and molybdenum were solubilized in the action of crusts, while nickel, zinc, …

Contributors
Noonan, Kathryn Alexander, Hartnett, Hilairy, Anbar, Ariel, et al.
Created Date
2012

This dissertation is presented in two sections. First, I explore two methods of using stable isotope analysis to trace environmental and biogeochemical processes. Second, I present two related studies investigating student understanding of the biogeochemical concepts that underlie part one. Fe and Hg are each biogeochemically important elements in their own way. Fe is a critical nutrient for phytoplankton, while Hg is detrimental to nearly all forms of life. Fe is often a limiting factor in marine phytoplankton growth. The largest source, by mass, of Fe to the open ocean is windblown mineral dust, but other more soluble sources are …

Contributors
Mead, Chris, Anbar, Ariel, Semken, Steven, et al.
Created Date
2014

One goal of geobiochemistry is to follow geochemical energy supplies from the external environment to the inside of microbial cells. This can be accomplished by combining thermodynamic calculations of energy supplies from geochemical processes and energy demands for biochemical processes. Progress towards this goal is summarized here. A critique of all thermodynamic data for biochemical compounds involved in the citric acid cycle (CAC) and the formulation of metabolite properties allows predictions of the energy involved in each step of the cycle as well as the full forward and reverse cycles over wide ranges of temperature and pressure. These results allow …

Contributors
Canovas, Peter Anthony, Shock, Everett, Hartnett, Hilairy, et al.
Created Date
2016

Amorphous phases are detected over large regions of the Martian surface from orbit and in more localized deposits by rovers on the surface. Amorphous silicates can be primary or secondary in origin, both having formed through very different processes, so the unambiguous identification of these phases is important for understanding the geologic history of Mars. Secondary amorphous silicates are poorly understood and underrepresented in spectral libraries because they lack the long-range structural order that makes their crystalline counterparts identifiable in most analytical techniques. Fortunately, even amorphous materials have some degree of short-range order so that distinctions can be made with …

Contributors
Smith, Rebecca Jean, Christensen, Philip, Shock, Everett, et al.
Created Date
2016

Carboxylic acids are an abundant and reactive species present throughout our solar system. The reactions of carboxylic acids can shape the organic abundances within oil field brines, carbonaceous chondrites, and different ranks of coal. I have performed hydrothermal experiments with model aromatic carboxylic acids in the presences of different oxide minerals to investigate the reactions available to carboxylic acids in the presence of mineral surfaces. By performing experiments containing one organic compound and one mineral surface, I can begin to unravel the different reactions that can occur in the presence of different minerals. I performed experiments with phenylacetic acid (PAA), …

Contributors
Johnson, Kristin Nicole, Shock, Everett, Hartnett, Hilairy, et al.
Created Date
2017

Lipids perform functions essential to life and have a variety of structures that are influenced by the organisms and environments that produced them. Lipids tend to resist degradation after cell death, leading to their widespread use as biomarkers in geobiology, though their interpretation is often tricky. Many lipid structures are shared among organisms and function in many geochemical conditions and extremes. I argue it is useful to interpret lipid distributions as a balance of functional necessity and energy cost. This work utilizes a quantitative thermodynamic framework for interpreting energetically driven adaptation in lipids. Yellowstone National Park is a prime location …

Contributors
Boyer, Grayson Maxwell, Shock, Everett, Hartnett, Hilairy, et al.
Created Date
2018