Dr. Jasper Konter
Volcanology, Geochemistry, Petrology division
Department of Earth Sciences
SOEST, University of Hawaii, Manoa


Dr. Jasper Konter is interested in mantle geochemistry, magmatic processes and volcanology. His research group focuses on the use of Pb, Sr, Nd, Hf, and Fe isotopes , as well as major and trace element abundances.

Konter's group works in the SOEST isotope lab and SOEST MC-ICP-MS lab


I teach/taught the following courses (websites are now hosted through UH's Laulima):
Geochemistry (UH ERTH325)
Geology of the Hawaiian Islands (ERTH103)
Natural Disasters and Human History (ERTH135)
Trace elements and Isotopes (UH GG711)

and previously at UTEP:
Igneous/Metamorphic Petrology (UTEP GEOL3315)
Introductory Geology for non-majors (UTEP GEOL1312)
Isotope Geology (UTEP GEOL5343)
Volcanology (UTEP GEOL4315/5315/6315)
Tectonics and Metamorphism (UTEP GEOL5315)


(current graduate students): Natália Gauer Pasqualon.

(past grads): Olliander Beucler (UH MSc); Valerie Finlayson (UH PhD; U. Maryland postdoc), Lisa Anaya (Dept. Homeland Security, UTEP MSc program), Bradley Benavides (Industry, UTEP MSc program), Lynnette Crocker (Industry, UTEP MSc program), Lauren Storm (Industry, UTEP MSc program).

(current undergraduates): Benjamin Duncan, Aiyana Kleefish, Oilau Lutali

(past undergraduate): Lisa Anaya (Dept. Homeland Security, UTEP MSc program), Jacqueline Engel (UTEP MSc program), Christine Waters (UH PhD program), Hector Zamora (U Arizona, PhD program).

(REU students): Holly Pettus, Alex Alverson, Molly Cunningham, Russell Benoy

We started our installation of a NSF-funded new multi-collector TIMS! ( SOEST Isotope Lab Nu TIMS )

We also have access to several existing mass spectrometers and a clean room complex (we are part of the SOEST isotope lab and SOEST MC-ICP-MS lab ), including:

* a multi-collector ICP-MS ( SOEST MC-ICP-MS Nu Plasma),
* a multi-collector TIMS ( SOEST Isotope Lab Micromass Sector 54)

An array of other equipment is available within the school: Research facilities at Earth Sciences-SOEST.)

In support of these instruments, the department has a range of laboratory facilities:

* a clean room with class 100 environment for separation/purification of Sr, Nd, Pb, Hf, Fe, Th, U, Ra, Pa, Ba, Rb, Sm, Li and Po. This clean room has multiple dedicated fume hoods and hepa-filtered laminar flow exhausting hoods (and HEPA-filtered drying tunnels)
* Millipore 18 MOhm water purification systems
* Besides multiple quartz-glass sub-boiling stills used for water and acid distillation, we also have 2 Savillex double distilling setups the DST-1000 (2 units connected in series)
and the "classic" Savillex design (2 connected units)
* array of lab tools for sample digestions, separations, evaporation of strong acids and other requirements for isotope analyses

We have designed our own hotplates and heat controllers for hotplates and stills. For questions about heat-controller design email Jasper (click on my name above for info)

Project Updates

Konter's group has been working on multiple projects over the last few years, including both sample analysis of natural samples, and method development. Here is a link to published work via Google Scholar.

In April 2022, we started the installation of a new Nu TIMS, funded by NSF-MRI (and a cost-match by the University and SOEST). This instrument will enable us to measure at significantly higher precision, while reducing required sample sizes. The instrument has 16 faraday collectors (using amplifiers with software-switchable resistors between 10^11, and either 10^12 or 10^13 Ohm), 2 daly collectors, and 3 SEM ion counters. Nu TIMS page

In January-February 2022, we ran a research cruise in the Pacific Ocean, between Hawaii, Wake Islands, Marcus Island (Minami Torishima), and Guam. Despite a delay and a cut in ship time, we (Konter (UH), Jackson (UCSB), and Koppers (OSU) and their students) sampled over 40 West Pacific Seamounts, to investigate the potential Cretaceous-aged path of the Rurutu- Arago and Samoa hotspots. This NSF-funded project also includes 40Ar/39Ar age and Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf isotope analyses to track the hotspots.

Work on the Samoa hotspot has continued with multiple projects, including an examination of stable Fe isotopes, which revealed some of the most fractionated Fe isotopes among hotspot volcanoes . Based on a comparison with elemental abundances, source compositions based on radiogenic isotopes, and magmatic modeling, we propose that Samoan mantle lithology (pyroxenites, known to have fractionated Fe), or metasomatism of the source likely caused the observed values.

A separate focus of our research group has been on the use of Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS), which can be used for fast chemical characterization of samples, with minimal to no sample preparation. This was applied to dredge samples during our