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Michael H. Engel

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Michael H. Engel

Michael H Engel

Ph.D., 1980, The University of Arizona
M.S., 1976, The University of Arizona
B.A., 1973, SUNY, Binghamton

Office: SEC S102

Areas of Interest

Organic/Stable Isotope Geochemistry


My primary research interests include the application of stable isotopes to assess the diagenetic history of organic matter in fossils and sediments and to determine the origins of amino acids in carbonaceous meteorites. Current research projects also include global studies of secular changes in the stable carbon and nitrogen isotope composition of crude oils and the stable sulfur isotope composition of organic matter.

Courses Taught

The Dynamic Earth

Introduction to Oceanography

Stable Isotope Geochemistry

Seminar – Organic Geochemistry

Selected Publications

Frederickson, J.A., Engel, M.H. and Cifelli, R.L.,2018. Niche partitioning in Theropod dinosaurs: Diet and habitat preference in predators from the uppermost Cedar Mountain Formation (Utah, U.S.A.) Nature Scientific Reports 8:17872, DOI:10.1038/s41598-018-35689-6, pp. 1-13.

Connan, J., Kavak, Orhan, Sağlamtimur, H., Engel, M., Zumberge, A. and Zumberge, J. 2018. A geochemical study of bitumen residues on ceramics excavated from Early Bronze age graves (3000-2900 BCE) at Basur Hӧyük in SE Turkey. Organic Geochemistry 115, 1-11.

Managadze, G.G., Engel, M.H., Getty, S., Wurz, P., Brinckerhoff, W.B., Shokolov, A.G., Sholin, G.V., Terent’ev, S.A., Chumikov, A.E., Skalkin, A.S., Blank, V.D., Prokhorov, V.M., Managadze, N.G. and Luchnikov, K.A., 2016. Excess L-alanine in amino acids synthesized in a plasma torch generated by a hypervelocity meteorite impact reproduced in the laboratory. Planetary and Space Science 131, 70-78.

Sephton, M.A., Jiao, D., Engel, M.H., Looy, C.V. and Visscher, H., 2015. Terrestrial acidification during the End-Permian biosphere crisis? Geology 43, 159-162.

Ross, J.D., Kelly, J.F., Bridge, E.S., Engel, M.H., Reinking, D.L. and Boyle, W.A., 2015. Pallid bands in feathers and associated stable isotope signatures reveal effects of severe weather stressors on fledgling sparrows. Peer J. 3: e814; DOI10.7717/peerj.814.

Brown, K.M., Connan, J., Poister, N.W., Vellanoweth, R.L., Zumberge, J. and Engel, M.H., 2014 Sourcing archaeological asphaltum (bitumen) from the California Channel Islands to submarine seeps. Journal of Archaeological Science 43, 66-76.

Engel, M.H., 2013. Impact of pre-biotic synthesis and diagenesis on the distribution, stereochemistry and stable isotope composition of amino acids in carbonaceous meteorites. In: Instruments, Methods and Missions for Astrobiology XVI (R.B. Hoover, G.V. Levin, A.Y. Rozanov and N.C. Wickramasinghe, eds.), Proceedings of SPIE (Intl. Assoc. for Optical Engineering), Vol. 8865, pp. 886505-1 to 886505-11.

Allen, D.C., Vaughn, C.C., Kelly, J.F., Cooper, J.T. and Engel, M.H., 2012. Bottom-up diversity effects increase resource subsidy flux between ecosystems. Ecology 93, 2165-2174.

Hartig, K.A., Soreghan, G.S., Goldstein, R.H. and Engel, M.H., 2011. Dolomite in Permian paleosols of the Bravo Dome CO2 Field, USA: Permian reflux followed by late recrystallization at elevated temperature. Journal of Sedimentary Research 81, 248-265.

Andrusevich, V.E., Engel, M.H. and Zumberge, J.E., 2000. Effects of paleolatitude on the stable carbon isotope composition of crude oils. Geology 28, 847-850.

Andrusevich, V.E., Engel, M.H., Zumberge, J.E. and Brothers, L.A., 1998, Secular, episodic changes in the stable carbon isotope composition of crude oils, Chemical Geology, 152, 59-72.

Engel, M.H. and Macko, S.A., 1997 Isotopic evidence for extraterrestrial non-racemic amino acids in the Murchison meteorite, Nature, 389, 265-268.

Engel, M.H. and Macko, S.A. (Editors), 1993, Organic Geochemistry, Principles and Applications, Plenum Press, N.Y.