up2date. Das Onlinemagazin der Universtiät Bremen

25 Years’ Core Repository

Facts and figures on an institution which has helped the university gain a great reputation during the past 25 years


1994, Schuppen 3 (a dockside warehouse) in Bremen’s Europahafen port: Cores obtained in expeditions as part of the IODP (International Ocean Discovery Program) are stored in Bremen for the first time. Under the leadership of geoscientist Professor Gerold Wefer, the university had successfully taken part in a bid for establishing a new “Core Repository.” Since then, a unique collection of deep-sea samples has been stored in the hanseatic city – one of only three sites worldwide. Since 2005, the cores have been stored directly on the university campus in the MARUM – Center for Marine Environmental Sciences. The center is, however, running out of space and will therefore be expanded in the coming years.

158.16 Kilometers

is the distance you would have if all the cores stored in Bremen were to be placed in a row next to one another. The cores are stored in more than 250,000 plastic boxes. Half of these – those with the black caps – are available for sampling in the repository’s laboratories whilst no material is being taken from the other half for the time being – those with the red caps. These will instead be archived for some time in the future when analytical new developments will enable even better investigation findings.

90 Expeditions

form the basis of the core sections stored in Bremen. These took place – as they still do – as part of the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) and the predecessor programs DSDP and ODP and often with the participation, or even under the leadership, of scientists from the University of Bremen.

35 Science und Sampling Partys

have been held at the core repository so far – get-togethers of international researchers at which cores are examined and there is a direct exchange on the initial findings. These parties are always a highlight of the Bremen Core Repository and also regularly draw the attention of international marine scientists to the university.

200 Scientists

come to Bremen every year, irrespective of the science and sampling parties, to work on the materials stored here. Together with curators and researchers from MARUM, they take more than 40,000 samples from the core halves each year – more than a million so far. Advanced and further training mainly draw a younger generation to Bremen’s Core Repository: Since 2007, MARUM has been holding a summer school here supported by the European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling (ECORD) and since 2015, an additional format; the training courses.

Six Oceans

form the origins of the cores stored in Bremen. The repository holds samples from the Atlantic, Mediterranean, Arctic Ocean, North Sea, Baltic Sea and the Black Sea. Samples from other maritime regions are stored in College Station (Texas, USA) and Kochi (Japan).

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