11,000 years ago, at the beginning of the Holocene, today’s hyper-arid Sahara desert was dotted with large and small lakes, savannah and grassland and in some regions even humid tropical forest. Due to a strengthened African monsoon triggered by strong orbital forcing i.e. summer insolation, more humid conditions compared to today, prevailed in Northern and Central Africa.
I am a member of the CRC 806 in project B3 as research assistant since 2011. Since September 2013 I am working on my PhD (funded by the German National Academic Foundation), in which I am analyzing changes of fossil diatom communities during the Holocene in sediment cores from Lake Kinneret (Israel; Southeastern Mediterranean) and Laguna de Medina (Spain, Western Mediterranean).
Svenja studied Physical Geography (M.Sc.) at University of Cologne and her Master’s thesis was about the depositional history of sediments within Mochena Borago Rockshelter that is affiliated in project A1. She is employed as research assistant in Project A1 since July 2014.
Lake sediments have been found to carry a natural record of many environmental and geological processes which have occurred on time scales of hundreds and thousand years. They are ideal recorders of high-resolution paleo-environmental changes, because of high sedimentary rates and weak physical disturbance.