Biogeochemical cycles. How chemical elements are cycled in the environment? We are studying the biogeochemical cycles of metals (Pb, Zn, Cu, Co, Ni, Cd), metalloids (As, Sb) and nutrients (N) in pristine and man-affected environments. We are using high-tech instruments to measure concentrations, speciation and isotopic composition of these elements in different environmental compartments (water, soils, sediments, atmosphere, biota). To understand historical anthropogenic influences on ecosystems we are using geochemical archives (mainly peatbogs, tree rings, floodplain deposits).
Waste materials from mining and smelting. How environment can be affected by disposal of mining and smelting wastes? We are involved in studies of mineralogy, geochemistry and environmental stability of mine tailings and metallurgical wastes at various mining/smelting sites in Europe and Africa. Our research helps to understand the mechanisms of release of metals and metalloids from these waste under various disposal scenarios, to suggest possible ways of their remediation/recycling and to protect environmental compartments (e.g. soils) in the vicinity of mining/smelting facilities.
Analysis of geomaterials. Our research is based on precise analytical determinations. We are developing and optimizing analytical procedures for determination of chemical and isotopic compositions of geological, technological and waste materials. We are also involved in testing certified reference materials (CRMs).