Research Group Richter

Research Topic

Arctic Soil Carbon Storage

Research Interest

Soils of the Northern circumpolar permafrost zone store about 1.700 Gt of carbon, more than twice as much as the current atmosphere and about half of all terrestrial ecosystems. The Richter group’s scientific curiosity is therefore centered on understanding transformation, decomposition and release of organic carbon from tundra ecosystems, with the ultimate goal to understand the controls of carbon sequestration in permafrost soils and the vulnerability of soil organic matter in a future climate.


  • Birgit Wild (Mag), PhD student (University of Vienna)
    Nitrogen controls on soil organic matter decomposition in arctic soils (FWF, PolarCLIMATE)
  • Jörg Schnecker (Mag), PhD student (University of Vienna)
    Composition of soil organic matter in permafrost soils of Siberia (FWF, PolarCLIMATE)
  • Anna Knoltsch (BSc), Master student (University of Vienna)
    Microbial nitrogen use efficiency along a transect in Western Siberia
  • Mounir Takriti, Diploma student (University of Vienna)
    Microbial carbon use efficiency and soil organic matter storage in arctic soils

Selected Publications

  • Kaiser, C., Meyer, H., Biasi, C., Rusalimova, O., Barsukov, P. & Richter, A. (2007). Conservation of soil organic matter through cryoturbation in arctic soils in Siberia. J. Geophys. Res., 112, G02017.
  • Biasi, C., Rusalimova, O., Meyer, H., Kaiser, C., Wanek, W., Barsukov, P., et al. (2005). Temperature-dependent shift from labile to recalcitrant carbon sources of arctic heterotrophs. Rapid Commun. Mass Spectrom., 19, 1401–1408.
  • Biasi, C., Meyer, H., Rusalimova, O., Hämmerle, R., Kaiser, C., Baranyi, C., et al. (2008). Initial effects of experimental warming on carbon exchange rates, plant growth and microbial dynamics of a lichen-rich dwarf shrub tundra in Siberia. Plant Soil, 307, 191–205.


  • CryoCARB – Long-term Carbon Storage in Cryoturbated Arctic Soils (ESF – PolarCLIMATE) Coordinator of the whole CryoCARB Network; PI of Austrian Project Part: FWF I370-B17


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