Sedimentology and Environmental Laboratory

Lab Leader: Dr. Revital Bookman



The main aim of the laboratory is to provide high-quality data for researchers, graduate, and outside clients. Research projects focus in Quaternary geology including paleolimnology and paleoclimate, coastal and mass transport processes , paleoseismology and sub-marine landslides. Anthropogenic processes in historical and modern times, including environmental pollution are also investigated. The laboratory is equipped for field expedition in marine and lacustrine environments and performs physical and chemical analyses on sediments, and Lead-210 dating.


 We have open positions for graduate students and post-docs

For information contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


News from our Lab


November 2019




The discussion on the laminated sequences of the Dead sea Basin is still open, especially regarding the factors affecting chemical deposition, and in particular the alternating aragonite and detritus facies that comprise major parts of the Dead Sea Deep Drilling Project (DSDDP) cores that cover the last ~220,000 years. The comment focuses on new observations that show the laminated sequences represent short-term and episodic meteorological and hydrological events and not periodic winter-summer deposition.





A new paper is out…

Liu’s work was finely published in Geo-Marine Letters. For the first time, this study reports the role of CH4 production in determining the spatial variability of free gas content in freshwater sediments.






Great news!our group on environmental pollution was awarded a joint NSFC-ISF research grant!

The name of the project is:

Tracing sources, dispersal and burial of heavy metals in industrialized bays using multiple stable isotopes

The search for enthusiastic students started!!! If you have a deep interest in environmental pollution and an excellent background in geology, oceanography, geochemistry or chemistry you are invited to contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.





Mikhail Markin, a PhD student in our lab, participated in a conference in Moscow. He got to practice his mother tongue, but more importantly, his work on Holocene climate variability from coastal aquatic environments gained a lot of interest.





October 2019

We welcome Mingjian Wang, a new Master student in our lab! Mingjian will study in his MSc research the industrial pollution of the Haifa Bay and participate in the incoming marine cruises to the Mediterranean. Mingjian, we wish you an interesting research and an enjoyable stay in Israel!


Mingjian in his first visit in Israel when he participated in a summer course in the Charney School of Marine Sciences at the University of Haifa. The picture was taken in a beautiful summer night at the Dado Beach, Haifa.


Revital participated in the 42nd Mediterranean Science commission (CIESM) conference in Cascais, Portugal. This meeting gathered a network of marine researchers focused on the highly impacted Mediterranean Sea. CIESM involves researchers from all shores of the Basin in its activities. This is a proud, century-long legacy which not only fosters the exchange of scientific ideas, but also maintains a constructive, peaceful dialogue among populations divided for too long by historical conflicts.




Last winter, Revital participated in a National Geographic Production that was filmed in the spectaculars landscape of the Dead Sea Basin. The documentary is finally out!

The TV documentary lead by Albert Lin, an award winning scientist, technologists, explorer and adventurer with a knack for storytelling both on stage and the big screen, seeks out the truth behind great bilical stories. To solve the mysteries Alberts, assisted with scientists, look beneath the earth's surface to reveal secrets that have been buried for thousands of years.



 In the picture from the documentary, Revital is explaining Albert how historical and pre-historical earthquakes were recorded in deformed lacustrine sediments of the Dead Sea.

Official Trailer | Buried Secrets of the Bible with Albert Lin | National Geographic UK



September 2019

The European Researchers’ Night at Downtown Haifa.
Revital gave a talk about climate change. Great experience as a scientist with very curious audience from children to senior citizens.


Will We Disappear Because of Climate Change?


August 2019

A new important paper is out. Reuven Belmaker, a former postdoc in our lab studied the complex carbonate system of the Dead Sea from flood plumes. The study presents significant implications for understanding the Dead Sea paleoclimate record.

Good work Reuven!


 The majestic Dead Sea in winter.
Flashfloods and sediment plums. Photos by Reuven Belmaker.


A cruise devoted for Yael’s MSc thesis on sub-marine slides sailed to the Dor Disturbance at the SE Mediterranean continental shelf. In the pictures, AUV operations and a long night on the R/V Bat Galim with Hadar, Mor, Yitzik, and Yael



A second cruise was devoted to the deployment of a McLane automatic sediment trap at the THEMO site, 1500m deep. We sailed on the “pirates boat” Shikmona with the amazing crow of Shay Shalev from Nahshon Marine Construction Ltd.



Going back to port we received a beautiful gift from the sea – Dolphins accompanied us back home!


June 2019

Dina Kollker submitted an excellent MSc thesis on “The role of submarine ground water discharge in the total alkalinity budget of the SE Mediterranean Sea” in collaboration with scientists from the Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research (IOLR). Dina celebrate her graduation in a ceremony with the beautiful view to Haifa Bay.

Congratulation and a lot of success Dina!




Revital participated in the National Academic Female Leaders in Science Workshop, a course dedicated to leading PIs from universities and research institutes in Israel. The workshop was developed to increase women leaders and professors influence in the world of scientific research.

The course was a fantastic opportunity for hands-on experience and intelligent discussions on the role of women leaders in the academic world.




Excellent and curious MSc or PhD student needed for a research project using new oceanographic data from an open sea observatory

THEMO (Texas A&M - University of Haifa Eastern Mediterranean Observatory) is an observatory comprising of two sensor arrays attached to surface buoys. THEMO includes a shallow mooring (125 m) in the coastal zone and a deep mooring (1500 m) located 50 km offshore the northern shores of Haifa in the Levant Basin, south eastern Mediterranean Sea. The two moorings have real-time communication capabilities, and the data is received at a shore station. A sediment trap and a turbidity profiler are attached to the deep buoy and will collect data for one full year.

We are looking for a student with background in marine sciences and/or data sciences for the research project. The project main objective is to study sediment transport on the sea bed and water column in relation to deep currents and turbidity events. The study will have implications for understanding the modern and past oceans and the effects of climate change.

The study will be conducted in the School of Marine Sciences in the University of Haifa and in collaboration with Texas A&M University.

Please address enquiries to Dr. Revital Bookman (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)


May 2019

We welcome Nadezhda Morova to our lab! Nadya, who recently submitted a MSc. thesis on Arctic and Antarctic soils, will work on post fire effects and past fire records in Mediterranean climate. We hope Nadya will adjust to the change in climate ?

In the picture our first field survey at the Carmel coast with the “Haifa Fire Group” Nurit, Anna, and Lea.


April 2019

The second course in Paleo-oceanography in IUI (Eilat) with Adi Torfstein and Jonatan Erez from the Hebrew University and Yair Rosenthal from Rutgers was a great opportunity for students to study basic concepts, learn about the most recent achievements, and experience sea and lab work.

Next year the course will also be open for international students!


The European Geoscience Union (EGU) General Assembly of 2019, was held between the 7-12 of April in Vienna, Austria. As the biggest and most important geosciences conference in Europe, this year more than 16,000 people participated in the conference!

Hadar attended the conference and gave a talk on how sediment cohesion and peak strength control failure initiation and timing of sub-marine slope destabilization as part of her dual PhD study in the School of Marine Sciences and MARUM, Bremen.

Hadar also used the opportunity to present a beautiful collaboration between international students that aims to communicate science named “Once upon a time...scientific short stories”. The poster depicted the challenges the group has faces in outreaching audience worldwide.



March 2019

The Department of Marine Geosciences hosted a delegation from the University of Bremen to discuss research collaboration and studend exchanege programs.

If you are intrested in exchange programs or dual international PhD dgree in Marine Geoscience in Israel or Germany, you are welcome to contact us.



January 2019

A great field day to the beach at the middle of the winter with Amir in-search for sampling sites for his PhD on beach rocks and shore development.



November 2018

An ISF proposal was submited in collaboration with the Technion to study the anatomy of the Israeli aelianite coastal ridges using of high resolution laser scanning and sedimentology for paleoclimatic interpretation.

If you are not busy next year, come and join us in a MSc or PhD reserch ?

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September 2018

After a long summer Dora Pond finaly dried out making it possible to drill! More than 20 m of sediments were collected and now Mikhail, a new PhD student in our lab, can start investigating the Holocene history of this unique environment…


After a long summer Dora Pond finaly dried out making it possible to drill! More than 20 m of sediments were collected and now Mikhail, a new PhD student in our lab, can start investigating the Holocene history of this unique environment…


May 2018

We congratulate Eyal Marder for his new paper published in Geomorphology. The paper describes the geomorphological response of the Lower Jordan River basin to active tectonics of the Dead Sea Transform. Using GIS analyses and image processing Eyal explored soft alluvial platforms and sub-surface gravity data, and described the basin asymmetry and morphometric-gravity relations as indicators for differential tectonic activity.

We wish Eyal good luck with his PhD in Colorado State University.

Eyal Marder at the Jordan River Basin


 The studies of Matan Elad (MSc) and Anat Ash (PhD) were presented in the 8th International Symposium on Submarine Mass Movements and Their Consequences (ISSMMC). The symposium was held on Vancouver Island on Canada's stunning west coast.

the 8th International Symposium on Submarine Mass Movements and Their Consequences group photo

may18 3

Divers in the fantastic views of Howe Sound, a network of fjords with high risk of submarine landslides situated immediately northwest of Vancouver, Canada. Picture taken during the conference field trip


April 2018

The first Paleoceanography course in Eilat took place in IUI. 22 students from all universities gathered to study the history of the oceans in the geologic past with a wide focus on circulation, geochemistry, and patterns of sedimentation and biological productivity. The 2019 Paleoceanography course is now open for registration.



February, 2018

Semion Polinov PhD student in our lab, participated in three-day training (20-22 February 2018) in Hamburg. The aims of this training was to teach how different methodologies can be implemented to conduct risk based cumulative effects assessment at various spatial scales in European and adjacent seas. The methods that were covered included Bayesian believe networks, iMSE risk assessment tools and bow-tie analysis. During this training students present their current research work. Semion present his PhD concept and preliminary results "Historical changes in human activities in the Mediterranean Sea". The training was organized and funded by Cost - European Cooperation in Science and Technology.

participants of the three-day training in Hamburg


July 2017

Anat's first paper is out! We congratulate Anat for this publication, which shows a noval approach in studying turbidites. Her paper " Micropaleontological and taphonomic characteristics of mass transport deposits in the northern Gulf of Eilat/Aqaba, Red Sea" can be accessed here.

papillosa breakage represented by area of broken shell

 In the figure from Anat's paper, degree of O. ammonoides and A. papillosa breakage represented by area of broken shell (light blue) vs. estimated area of the original shell (pink). Scale bars =500 ?m


 February 2017

New paper for Iris Zohar our former postdoc. The paper explores the urbanization effects in an urban winter pond at the coast of Israel and it follows a previous paper that described the atmospheric pollution at a national level reconstructed using a core from the pond's center.

 Iris Zohar



October 2017

Joel and Dorit at a coastal surveyDr. Joel Roskin is leaving us… Joel spend with us 3 fruitful years conducting research in the coast of Israel with Prof Dorit Sivan and in the Negev Desert with Dr. Kobi Vardi.

Recently Joel won a generous grant in the Israel-China Joint Scientific Research Program of the ISF to continue his studies on aeolian-fluvial processes, so we wish him a lot of success in his new journey to China!

Joel and Dorit at a coastal survey 

Revital standing at the dune dam cross-  section at the Ashalim site in the Negev Desert


Revital standing at the dune dam cross-

section at the Ashalim site in the Negev Desert



January 2017

On January 2017, we organized a workshop on Marine Pollution with  Prof. Nicholas Fisher the director of the Consortium for Interdisciplinary Environmental Research at Stony Brook University.

The workshop focused on chemical contaminants, including an array of metals and metalloids, long-lived radionuclides emanating from the nuclear fuel cycle and weapons testing, and organic pollutants in the marine environment. We also visited the Port of Haifa and the Dan wastewater facility

 Port of Haifa



September 2016

Prof. Paul Liu, head of the River, Delta, Sea Level Change, and Ocean Margin Research Center at the North Carolina State University visited us. Paul's research focuses on understanding the fate of sediments delivered to the sea by large rivers.

Paul gave two seminar talks as part of a focused session on Sediments in Coastal and Marine Environments.

  • New Crisis: Recent Dramatic Changes of Global River Discharge to the Ocean - the Physical and Biogeochemical Implications
  • Fates of World Larger River Derived Sediments to the Sea: cross-shelf vs alongshore transport
Prof. Paul Liu     Prof. Paul Liu 

  Paul touring the old city of Acre from sea and visiting Aeolianite ("Kurkar") outcrops along the northern coast



 July 2016

In the Kinneret sampling campaign with Ilia Ostrovsky and Regina Katzman we collected more than 20 short cores waiting for analysis as part of the sediment gas content in Lake Kinneret Project.

short cores mapshort cores waiting for analysis


April 2016

We congratulate Anat for receiving the Geological Society award for best student presentation. Good work Anat!

 Anat receiving the Geological Society award



 November 2015

This month was very busy with the organization of the International Batsheva de Rothschild Seminar on Environmental Science and Policy - Challenges in the South-Eastern Mediterranean that took place at Nir Etzion, Mt. Carmel, Israel.

The significance of this workshop lies in the assembly of leading researchers, policy makers, public health professionals, governmental partners and industrial representatives for mutual collaboration for an elaborating discussion on the Mediterranean current and future environment.

Prof. Daniel Pauly with students and researchers

 Prof. Daniel Pauly , Sea Around Us, the University of British Colombia with students and researchers after a temperamental session on Fisheries


April 2015

 Prof. Chaim Benjamini guided our students at a field trip dedicated to Eocene sub-marine landslides.

We visited beautiful outcrops that exposed the phenomena in different marine environments.

Benjamini guiding our students







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