Stable isotope biogeochemistry started in earnest in the 1960s with isotope ratio mass spectrometers hand made in physicists’ laboratories. I began my career at the time when people were realising that the biosphere was important in shaping the geosphere. Bringing sophisticated chemical instrumentation to study the relationships between living organisms and their environment, in particular in fossils over geological time, was exploding in the 1970s and 1980s. Follow along on insights gained over a nearly 50 year career.

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