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Subsurface Biogeochemical Research Program

Videos Featuring SBR-Funded Research

Jump to: ANL SFA |LBNL SFA | ORNL SFA | PNNL SFA | SSRL SFA videos


SBR Webinar

Design thinking is a process of finding and solving problems. This webinar introduces scientists to design-led approaches to solving big challenges with impactful projects. Share your experience on Twitter @OpenWatersheds #DesignForScientists (Apr 26, 2019) [note: audio starts at ~2 min]


Tims Branch Wetlands Site, Savannah River National Laboratory; Aiken, SC

Wetland Hydro-biogeochemistry Scientific Focus Area at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL)

A team from SRNL, Argonne National Laboratory, Clemson University, The University of Georgia’s Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, and others, is studying low-level uranium concentrated in Tims Branch wetlands. (May 19, 2020)


East River, Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory (RMBL), Redwell Basin Field Site; Colorado

Watershed Function Scientific Focus Area at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL)

General Headwaters Watershed Research

A team at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) studies ecosystem changes in a research area along the East River catchment near the Upper Colorado River headwaters.

A team at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) studies changes to plant communities in a research area along the East River catchment near the Upper Colorado River headwaters.

Nitrogen is a key element and can have a significant impact on ecosystem function. At the East River, Colorado field site, teams of scientists led by Berkeley Lab and supported by the Department of Energy are working to identify major inputs and exports of nitrogen in a pristine watershed system.

Berkeley scientist Jillian Banfield shares her perspective on how the DOE Joint Genome Institute helps advance her research on the roles of subsurface microbial communities in biogeochemical cycling.  (May 7, 2015)

Berkeley Lab Earth Scientists Jill Banfield and Harry Beller explain the SFA's research on how metabolic lifestyles of microbial communities modulate in response to as well as influence environmental change. (Feb. 17, 2015)

Berkeley Lab Earth Scientist Ken Williams explains the SFA's watershed research including identification and monitoring of primary factors that control biogeochemical functioning. (Jan. 23, 2015)

Overview of the Berkeley Lab SFA project by Susan Hubbard, Project Lead, on its mission to develop a predictive understanding of terrestrial environments to enable a new class of solutions for environmental and energy solutions. (Dec. 19, 2014)

East River Site

A team at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) studies ecosystem changes in a research area along the East River catchment near the Upper Colorado River headwaters.

Highlighting one of the groundwater discharge zones into the East River (northeast of Crested Butte, Colorado) being studied by Marty Briggs (USGS) and his collaborators Fred Day Lewis (USGS) and Lee Slater (Rutgers). (Nov. 4, 2017)

Hillslope Sites

The video introduces the Watershed Science Community to DOE-funded researcher Dr. Marty Briggs (USGS) who is currently working with his extended team at multiple locations within the East River watershed to explore a diversity of groundwater-surface zone interactions zones. (Aug. 3, 2018)

Video interview with Rick Colwell (Oregon State) and Laura Lapham (Univ. of Maryland) describing their DOE-funded project using osmotically driven pumps to continuous sample groundwater, pore water, and stream water under harsh winter conditions under ice and snow. (Nov. 6, 2017)

Sampling approach used by Nicola Falco (LBNL) and Dana Chadwick (Stanford) to link ground and airborne based hyperspectral measurements with plant chemistry and functional type. (Jul. 13, 2017)

Irwin Field Site

This video presents a virtual site visit of snow pit digging associated with the April 2019 "peak SWE" NASA-JPL Airborne Snow Observatory (ASO) overflight. (May 29, 2019)

This video presents a virtual site visit of snow pit digging associated with the April 2019 "peak SWE" NASA-JPL Airborne Snow Observatory (ASO) overflight. (May 29, 2019)

Pumphouse Site

This video presents a virtual site visit of the off channel wetland complex upstream of the Pumphouse region on the East River main stem. (Jul. 21, 2019)

This video illustrates the recent drilling activity (Oct. 7, 2018) associated with coring borehole PLM5 along the Pumphouse lower montane hillslope intensive study area. (Oct. 7, 2018)

The video introduces Dr. Audrey Sawyer (Ohio State) and Dr. Mike Wilkins (CO State) who are currently working with graduate students, Amelia Nelson (Sawyer Lab) and Casey Saup (Wilkins Lab) along the Pumphouse reach of the East River investigating the impact of river stage variations on biogeochemical reactions in streambed sediments. (Aug. 3, 2018)

This video presents the experimental snowmelt manipulation plots along the Pumphouse hillslope. (Apr. 2, 2018)

Video depicts site conditions along the Pumphouse intensive hillslope study site and describes infrastructure improvements tied to winter and spring sampling. It also introduces a new team member. (Dec. 2, 2017)

Virtual site visit of the Pumphouse intensive study site during "peak cattle" event as a herd was driven down the East River valley in and amongst the SFA infrastructure. Ranchers are critical members of the community and important stakeholders in the East River (Colorado) watershed engaged to develop cattle-friendly research activities and infrastructure. (Oct. 6, 2017)

Redwell Basin Site

Research activities of USGS scientists Andy Manning and Lyndsay Ball within the East River watershed tied to the Redwell Basin drilling project. (Oct. 10, 2017)

Virtual site visit to "upper elevation" drilling site in Redwell Basin. Heavily mineralized core from 170-180 foot depth range is presented, with mineralization present in altered sand/silt stones of the Mesa Verde formation overlying the Mancos shale. (Oct. 7, 2017)

Mineralized core including massive pyrite and apparent fault zone(s) / fault gouge in the altered sand and silt stones of the Mesa Verde formation. (Oct. 7, 2017)

Packer system and method used for downhole rock permeability measurements within the Upper Elevation borehole drilled in the Redwell Basin. (Oct. 7, 2017)

Collaborative research activities between Berkeley Lab and USGS are being planned for the Redwell Basin. Activities include drilling of two deep groundwater wells, core sampling, surface geophysical data collection, borehole logging, and airborne imaging designed to examine the impact of climate disturbance on metals release from mountain watersheds. (July 13, 2017)

Slate River Site

This video highlights the research activities of Dr. Don Nuzzio of Analytical Instrument Systems (AIS) who is using the East River Community Watershed to test a novel electrochemical platform to quantify riverine fluxes of oxygen and metals via DOE's Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program. (Apr. 30, 2019)



East Fork Poplar Creek Field Site, Tennessee

Biogeochemical Transformations at Critical Interfaces Scientific Focus Area at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)

Rick Perry, Secretary of Energy, tours the Aquatic Ecology Lab (AEL) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee. DOE's Office of Science and the Office of Environmental Management work together at AEL to identify effective and affordable solutions for mercury cleanup that can be used in Oak Ridge and across the country. (May 10, 2019)

From the Knoxville News Sentinel, Knoxville, Tennessee. (May 23, 2018)

Local television news features ORNL's mercury research. Video provided by WATE, Nexstar Broadcasting, Knoxville, Tennessee. (April 11, 2018)

An example of steep biogeochemical gradients across the subsurface-surface interface where anoxic water discharges to the surface water of East Fork Poplar Creek. Reduced iron(II) oxidizes to bright orange iron(III) in the presence of dissolved oxygen in the surface water. Iron oxidizing bacteria may also contribute to the process. Provided by the Biogeochemical Transformations at Critical Interfaces Scientific Focus Area, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee. (December 4, 2017)

An in-field interview with Dr. Jason Demers (University of Michigan) in which he describes a collaborative project he is leading. Provided by the Biogeochemical Transformations at Critical Interfaces Scientific Focus Area, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee. (December 1, 2017)

Time-lapse video of the setting moon and rising sun at one of our experiment stations on lower East Fork Poplar Creek, Tennessee. From the Biogeochemical Transformations at Critical Interfaces Scientific Focus Area, Oak Ridge National Laboratory. (March 16, 2017)

A team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory has identified a novel microbial process that can break down toxic methylmercury in the environment, a discovery that could potentially reduce mercury toxicity levels and support health and risk assessments. ORNL News Release (May 31, 2017)

A kayak tour of a ~2 kilometer reach of East Fork Poplar Creek, Tennessee. Playback speed is 2× real time; no audio. From the Biogeochemical Transformations at Critical Interfaces Scientific Focus Area, Oak Ridge National Laboratory. (March 9, 2013)



Columbia River Reach, Hanford Site; Washington

River Corridor and Watershed Hydrobiogeochemistry Scientific Focus Area at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL)
Worldwide Hydrobiogeochemical Observation Network for Dynamic River Systems (WHONDRS; whondrs.pnnl.gov)
See also: PNNL SFA video page

Researchers at PNNL re-engineered a technique known as electrical resistivity tomography to study waterway interactions. (Apr. 20, 2020)

Crowdsource Science for Disturbance Ecology. (Apr. 20, 2020)

WHONDRS is a consortium of researchers and other interested parties that aims to understand coupled hydrologic, biogeochemical, and microbial function within river corridors experiencing recurring, episodic, or chronic hydrologic perturbations. WHONDRS aims to galvanize a global community around understanding these coupled systems from local to global scales and ultimately provide the scientific basis for improved management of dynamic river corridors throughout the world. (Jan 21, 2019)

Demonstrates protocol for a global-scale community-enabled study of surface water metabolomics led by WHONDRS (Jan 28, 2019)

Demonstrates protocol for 48 hour Diel Cycling Study for WHONDRS (Aug 10, 2018)

Estimating the mass flux of water through subsurface sediments is important for understanding hydrologic and biogeochemical function of river corridors, but is very challenging in dynamic systems. WHONDRS is solving this challenge with new sensor technology. (Dec 6, 2018)

PNNL researchers are conducting an ongoing experiment along a stretch of the Columbia River in southeastern Washington state. Thousands of meters of wires, sampling tubes, and sensors have been deployed to help them predict hydrobiogeochemical function under future environmental conditions. (Nov. 21, 2017)

An imaging technology that enables researchers—for the first time—to take four-dimensional views of the subsurface was selected as a 2016 R&D 100 Award winner. The technology combines geology, physics, mathematics and chemistry with supercomputer modeling to create four-dimensional images of what’s happening below the surface. E4D-RT was developed by PNNL's Tim Johnson. (Nov. 4, 2016)

PNNL ecologist James Stegen discusses his team’s research in the area where river water and groundwater mix — an area known as the hyporheic zone — along the Columbia. (Apr. 7, 2016)


East River, Colorado and Riverton, Wyoming Field Sites

Groundwater Quality Scientific Focus Area at Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL)

John Bargar (Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource, SSRL) shows how an X-ray microprobe at SSRL beam line 2-3 can be used to develop water quality models to help manage water quality and predict our nations water availability. (Jan. 22, 2018)

Video interview with John Bargar (SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory) describing work being performed within the greater East River Watershed associated with the DOE-funded Groundwater Quality Science Focus Area (SFA) research program, which examines hydrologically driven biogeochemical processes that control water quality. (Dec. 6, 2017)

Subsurface Biogeochemical-Related BER Research Highlights

Now Featuring


Open Watershed Science by Design Workshop Report


October 2019


EESSD Strategic Plan 2018

Download PDF


Subsurface Biogeochemical Research Overview

November 2019 [PDF]