A comparison of methods measuring nitrogen fixation in a laboratory setting

Name of Award

3M Small Scale Grant

Date Awarded




Project Description

Jill Welter, Associate Professor of Biology, and Jackelyn Goldschmidt, student researcher, received a $2,000 award from the 3M Small Scale Grant program to assess the effectiveness of current methods for quantifying N2-fixation, as well as how different methods vary as a function of temperature. They will measure N2-fixation using three methods that are currently used in the field: acetylene reduction assay, 15N2 biomass incorporation method, and 15N2 gas consumption in the water, in a lab setting to see how the methods compare across a temperature gradient (5°C, 10°C, 15°C, and 20°C). The goal is to better understand how each of these methods responds to temperature, in particular the ARA method and the 15N2 biomass incorporation method, and to see if the 15N2 gas method is able to answer those questions by providing more exact measurements.

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