Selenium isotope paleobiogeochemistry

Eva E. Stueeken, Michael A. Kipp

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The attraction of selenium isotopes as a paleoenvironmental tracer lies in the high redox potential of selenium oxyanions (SeIV and SeVI), the two dominant species in the modern ocean. The largest isotopic fractionations occur during oxyanion reduction, which makes selenium isotopes a sensitive proxy for the redox evolution of our planet. As a case study we review existing data from the Neoarchean and Paleoproterozoic, which show that significant isotopic fractionations are absent until 2.5 Ga, and prolonged isotopic deviations only appear around 2.3 Ga. Selenium isotopes have thus begun to reveal complex spatiotemporal redox patterns not reflected in other proxies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationElements in geochemical tracers in earth system science
EditorsTimothy Lyons, Alexandra Turchyn, Chris Reinhard
Place of PublicationCambridge
PublisherCambridge University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9781108782203
ISBN (Print)9781108749169
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 1 Sept 2020

Publication series

NameCambridge elements
ISSN (Print)2515-6454
ISSN (Electronic)2515-7027


  • Selenium isotopes
  • Redox proxy
  • Earth evolution


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