School of Earth and Environmental Sciences


Photo of Dr Sarah Reynolds

Dr Sarah Reynolds

  • Qualifications: BSc (Hons) Oceanography with Chemistry (University of Liverpool) PhD Biogeochemistry of Nitrogen in the Atlantic Ocean (University of Liverpool)
  • Role Title: Lecturer in Environmental Chemistry
  • Address: School of Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of Portsmouth, Burnaby Bldg, Burnaby Road, PORTSMOUTH PO1 3QL
  • Telephone: 023 9284 2169
  • Email:
  • Department: School of Earth & Environmental Sciences
  • Faculty: Faculty of Science


I am marine biogeochemist with a research emphasis in nutrient dynamics and maintenance of primary production. Over the course of my career to date I have been involved with examining nutrient sources and cycling in both the shelf seas and oligotrophic ocean with expertise in both pelagic and benthic systems. At present my research efforts include utilising biological molecular techniques to answer large scale ecosystem questions regarding microbial nutrient acquisition and maintenance strategies in nutrient limited regions.

Teaching Responsibilities

I am unit coordinator for the following units:

Level 1: U20137 - Environmental Systems (SEES402)
Level 2: U25977 - Environmental Chemistry and Monitoring (SEES547)

I contribute to teaching the following units:
Level 6: U20729 - Waste Management & Environmental Pollution (SEES614)
Level 6: U20145 - Climate Change (SEES613)
Level 6: U20143 - Environmental Science Dissertation (SEES611)
Level 6: U20142 - Environmental Science Project (SEES610)
Level 7: U20322 - Principles & Analysis of Pollution with Metals (SEES713)


How do ecologically important marine microbes assimilate different nutrient sources across varying biogeochemical regimes?

  • Is nutrient uptake co-limited by trace metals?
  • How does the labiality of organic matter influence its potential as a food source for marine microorganisms?
  • What factors control the magnitude and extent of marine diazotrophs?
  • To what extent do permeable shelf sea sediments and their associated microbial community contribute to global carbon and nutrient cycling?
  • How resuspension events in the shelf sea environment influence nutrient and carbon fluxes across the sediment/water interface

Current & Past Research Projects

Are microbial phosphorus acquisition strategies in the marine environment influenced by nutrient and trace metal availability? University of Portsmouth RDIF funded. In collaboration with Dr Claire Mahaffey (University of Liverpool - ZIPLOc) & Dr Julie Robidart (National Oceanography Centre, Southampton)

Shelf Sea Biogeochemistry Programme; Work Package Two ‘Bottom Boundary Processes’. NERC funded post-doc

Microbial assimilation of phosphorus: A molecular approach. NERC funded Co-Researcher Investigator

Physical and chemical forcing of diazotrophy in the (sub)-tropical Atlantic Ocean. NERC funded post-doc

The effect of elevated carbon dioxide levels on nitrogen fixation in the marine environment. NSF funded post-doc

The biogeochemistry of nitrogen in the Atlantic Ocean. NERC funded studentship as part of the Atlantic Meridional Transect programme.


Research profile

Explore my research profile, publications and activities on the Portsmouth Research Portal

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