Project 1 Early Life and environment : Evidence from Indian Precambrian basins.
Description New evidence of early life forms found in the Precambrian (4600-541 Ma) successions is always considered a significant discovery and draws attention of the global scientific community. India with its vast Precambrian rocks is looked upon to enrich our knowledge of the early life. Each new finding from the older rocks bridges the gap in our knowledge about the early development of life, atmosphere and lithosphere on the Earth. Hence antiquity and evolution of early life are important questions for scientists. The answers are being attempted in the sub-projects running in the institute looking at the sediments of Precambrian Eon, which spans over more than 3450 Ma and found profusely on the Indian Subcontinent.
Coordinator Mukund Sharma
Co-Coordinator Veeru Kant Singh
Technical Support Archana Sonkar
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Project 2 Emergence, biotic crisis, adaptation and radiation of life forms during Paleozoic and Mesozoic: An integrated approach
Description In the Indian sub-continent the Gondwana deposits mark the recommencement of sedimentation commenced from Permo-Carboniferous after a long hiatus since the Proterozoic. These have been formed during a span of about 200 million years from late Carboniferous to early Cretaceous. Hence in this very important time slice of Phanerozoic and Mesozoic terrestrial and coastal ecosystem nine projects dealing with biostratigraphy, palaeoenvironment, palaeocology and palaeobiogeography are being conducted. Since inception, the BSIP has been significantly contributing on the studies of Gondwana palaeobiodiversity. Reconstruction of the vegetation through time involves observation and understanding of the distribution of plant remains belonging to various plant groups in different sedimentary facies of different formations.
Coordinator Amit K. Ghosh
Co-Coordinator Srikanta Murthy
Technical Support Shivalee Srivastava
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Project 3 Palaeobiogeography, biotic and climatic events, characterization of biomarker in the terminal Cretaceous-early Palaeogene sequences of India
Description This time frame includes the northward voyage of Indian Plate from the Southern Hemisphere, its collision with the Eurasian Plate and subsequent uplift of the mighty Himalayas. During the northward journey, Indian sedimentary basins, especially at plate margins, experienced rise and fall of sea level, leading to deposition of vast amount of terrestrial as well as marine sedimentary archives during the Paleogene. A vast volcanic activity also occurred when the Indian Plate passed over the reunion hotspot resulting into the deposition of thick volcano-sedimentary successions in central India and adjoining areas (i.e. Deccan Traps). Hence this project deals with the evolution, palaeobiogeographic history of the biota and climate during the Late Cretaceous to Cenozoic Period. The reconstructions (palaeoenvironment, sea level fluctuation, history and dating of sediment) are based on the plant and animal megafossils, insect fossils, pollen and spores, nannofossils, dinoflagellate cysts, inorganic and organic geochemistry, process based sedimentology and stratigraphic studies including sequence- and magnetostratigraphic proxies. The organic matter characterization based on multidisciplinary aspects are also being pursued for the evaluation of organic-rich deposits in addition to environmental (climate and ecology) and depositional conditions (pH/Eh conditions, bacterial activity, hydrological conditions, marine influence, fire events, etc.) prevailed during the formation of these deposits.
Coordinator Vandana Prasad
Co-Coordinator Anupam Sharma
Technical Support Archana Sonker
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Project 4 Understanding monsoonal variability and its relationship with global climate during the Neogene using biotic and abiotic proxies
Description Neogene successions in the Himalaya, western India, Peninsular India and Andaman islands are being studied in four projects are involved in this study. Himalaya is the youngest fold mountain system and the history of its evolution is divided into two stages: the Eohimalayan event that occurred during the middle Eocene to Oligocene (45–25 Ma) and the Neohimalayan event that occurred since the early Miocene. Both these stages are well represented in the rock formations along the entire stretch of the Himalayan mountain chain. Rising 500 to 8000 m above the sea level, 2400 km long and 250 to 300 km wide Himalayan mountain barrier, immensely affects the atmospheric circulation over the Asian continent including the Indian landmass. Therefore this project is designed after pondering over the questions on the monsoonal evolution in respect to a sequential chronology and in the time frame of rising of the Himalayas and its effect on the Indian sub-continent in the Neogene sequences using geochemical, micro and macro palaeontological proxies assisted by rock magnetic studies. The idea is to address and understand monsoonal variability and its relationship with global climate in the Indian sub-continent.
Coordinator Binita Phartiyal
Co-Coordinator Amit K. Ghosh
Technical Support Prashanta Kumar Das Shivalee Srivastava
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Project 5 Vegetation dynamics and palaeoclimate of late Quaternary sequences of Himalayan region.
Description The vegetation dynamics and palaeoclimate are being addressed based on multi-proxy evidences like micro-biota (pollen, algae, fungi, testate amoeba) and pollen-spores in the late Quaternary sediment archive to record climatic changes, monsoonal variations and sea-level fluctuations. In addition, tree-rings from both eastern and western Himalaya region are used to assess the climate of recent two millennia. In the Meghalaya Plateau and south Assam plains in the northeast, past vegetation, climate variability and anthropogenic impact are the focus along with Holocene climate variability from Darjeeling using modern-vegetation-climate relationship with respect to MAT, MAP and other environmental variables. Pollen records for reconstructing the Late Quaternary vegetation and climatic changes from Higher Himalaya Tethyan and Trans-Himalayan region of Himachal Pradesh, Ladakh and J&K for the Holocene climatic history and anthropogenic impact on the high-altitude vegetation. Developing the pollen and vegetation datasets for the Extended R-value (ERV) models based on the field survey protocol for the vegetation distribution and pollen analysis and establishing the pollen-vegetation relationship by calculating pollen productivity estimates of the plant taxa and their relative source area of pollen using ERV models, and its relation with the abiotic components is also being attempted in different vegetation regimes of India.
Coordinator Ratan Kar
Co-Coordinator S.K. Basumatary
Technical Support Rajaram Verma
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Project 6 Monsoonal variability and climate change during late Quaternary in Peninsular India inferred from palaeovegetation
Description Indian monsoon is the major controlling mechanism for the survival of culture and economy of Indian subcontinent. The variability of Indian monsoon affects the water resources and agrarian production. Hence, reconstruction of the monsoon variability needs to be studied in depth as it will helps us to understand the possible future scenario in terms of monsoon intensity variability. From the coastal regions of India- southeastern Ghats and southeast coast, eastern coast (Sunderban and Mahanadi deltas) and from the southwest coast (Kanara region and Kerala) and the Core Monsoon Zone in central India studies on monsoonal variability and climate change to determine these spatio-temporal reconstructions for monsoonal data covering late Quaternary.
Coordinator Anjum Farooqui
Co-Coordinator Biswajeet Thakur
Technical Support Rajaram Verma
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Project 7 Late Quaternary Palaeoclimate and palaeocenographic variability from marine records
Description Reconstruction of monsoon - climate induced changes; investigating Oxygen Minimum Zone variability; climate variability from the Oceans and Polar regions is being conducted in the using a high-resolution multi-proxy analysis. Diatom productivity to deduce late Quaternary climatic changes from the southeastern Atlantic and Indian oceans is being attempted; and from Svalbard, the late Pleistocene-Holocene climate using desmids and spheroidal carbonaceous particles as proxies is being done.
Coordinator Pawan Govil
Co-Coordinator Vartika Singh
Technical Support Rajaram Verma
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Project 8 Holocene monsoonal variability and its associated forcing factors inferred from abiotic proxies
Description The climate fluctuations in the Indian subcontinent are fundamentally related to the dynamics of the seasonally reversing monsoon wind system and the resultant rainfall, exhibiting great variations in space and time. The accuracy of the climatic reconstructions greatly depends on the quality of the database and a discreet use of proxy indicators. Abiotic parameters are the foremost, tested and widely applied in palaeoclimatic, tectonic and provenance studies. As geochemical, environmental magnetic and isotopic fingerprinting of various geological and geo-biological archives have proven to be an important tool to study the earth surface processes, climate-tectonic interaction and evolving earth's climate through time on orbital and/or tectonic timescales we at BSIP attempt a multi-proxy approach in order to retrieve information locked in the Holocene archives. The information thus gathered helps to evolve a complete and comprehensive picture of the subject and can be utilized by modelers for prediction, policy formulation and management of resources.
Coordinator Anupam Sharma
Co-Coordinator Binita Phartiyal
Technical Support Jitendra Yadav
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Project 9 Archaeobiology, Archaeochemistry, Palaeogenomics/metagenomics: Implications to human environment interaction during the Holocene
Description The Indian subcontinent, today, is one of the most densely populated landmass, diverse linguistically, culturally and genetically. Recent researches coming out of this part of the world are tentatively challenging existing theoretical understanding about divergence of Human populations from the continent of Africa. The observed human diversity on the sub-continent could be attributed to amicable and adequate shelters with conducive climatic/ environmental conditions that offered life to variety of human populations migrating from place to place right from the Late Pleistocene to prehistoric and historical time periods. DNA fingerprinting and population studies Agriculture has remained a major pillar for human sustenance since beginning of organized human life. A group in BSIP is involved in investigating past agronomic conditions, crop evolution, craft culture, domestic and industrial human activities (using multi isotopic and geochemical tracers from archaeological material); ); reconstructing the population history of South Asia (palaeogenomics); past agricultural and other socio-economic activities conducted by ancient settlers; and palaeoethnobotany. This combination of studies will help us to understand past agriculture, crop types, water status, manure practices, firing history of artisans, population history during the Holocene times.
Coordinator Rajesh Agnihotri
Co-Coordinator Anil K. Pokharia
Technical Support Nandita Tiwari
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Project 10 Laboratory establishment and protocol development for new proxy parameters and smooth functioning of sophisticated analytical facilities
Description The state-of-the-art geochemical facility (Q-ICPMS, XRF, GC-MS, IRMS, XRD, LPSA, SEM and Raman spectroscopy) developed at BSIP is successfully catering the needs of the host institute, other national institutes and universities. The institute further operates Palaeomagnetism and TL/OSL chronology Laboratories providing dating services to researchers, academia and industry for credible support. This variety of analytical services unusually rare under one roof. For further details please see section of Sophisticated Analytical Instruments Facilities:
Coordinator Director
Co-Coordinator Anupam Sharma
Technical Support Jitendra Yadav
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