Soil Microbiome

Led by Joaquin Jimenez-Martinez

Soils represent the interface between surface and subsurface water resources, hosting processes critical to the hydrological cycle, to the climate and to the availability of life-sustaining resources. In this topologically complex environment, where voids (pores) are occupied by water and air, water is the main vehicle for chemicals and microorganisms. Soils are typically highly heterogeneous in the spatial distribution of chemicals such as nutrients and pollutants. Microbiology in soils is therefore exposed to a heterogeneous chemical landscape, and further catalyzes reactions that modify the physico-chemical environment. By using microfluidics and microscopy, we study the dynamics of chemical transport and the resulting microbial behavior.