Douglas Rumble III uses the stable isotopes of oxygen and sulfur to explore the evolution of Earth's atmosphere by analyzing ancient rocks and to understand the origin of the Solar System through study of meteorites. He obtained a Ph.D in geological sciences from Harvard University in 1969, and a BA in geology from Columbia University in 1964.
He has been a staff scientist in petrology and geochemistry at the Geophysical Laboratory since 1973. He served as a program director in the Division of Earth Sciences, National Science Foundation, 1985 to 1987. He is a past-President of both the Geological Society of Washington and the Mineralogical Society of America. He is a Fellow of the Geochemical Society, the Geological Society of America, and the Mineralogical Society of America.
Rumble’s current research is centered on the three stable isotopes of oxygen and the four stable isotopes of sulfur. Oxygen isotopes are used to distinguish processes that occurred in the solar nebula from those taking place in planetary bodies after their condensation from the nebula. On Earth, the anomalous fractionation of oxygen isotopes during the formation of ozone from oxygen by ultraviolet photolysis leaves an indelible record of atmospheric chemistry. The four stable isotopes of sulfur provide insights into the evolution of Earth’s atmosphere in the form of anomalous fractionations recorded in sulfur-bearing minerals from rocks as old as 3.8 billion years.
Rumble III, D., M.F. Miller, I.A. Franchi, and R.C. Greenwood, Oxygen three-isotope fractionation lines in terrestrial silicate minerals: an inter-laboratory comparison of hydrothermal quartz and eclogitic garnet. Geochim. Cosmochim. Act 71, 3592-3600 (2007).
Ono, S., W.C. Shanks, O.J. Rouxel and D. Rumble, S-33 constraints on the seawater sulfate contribution in modern seafloor hydrothermal vent sulfides. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 711, 1170-1182 (2007).
Zhang, R. Y., T. Li, D. Rumble III, T.F. Yui, L. Li, J.S. Yang, Y. Pan and J.G. Liou, Multiple metasomatism in Sulu ultrahigh-P garnet peridotite constrained by petrological and geochemical investigations. Journal of Metamorphic Geology 25, 149-164 (2007).
Lin, L.H., P.L Wang, D. Rumble, J. Lippmann-Pipke, E. Boice, L.M. Pratt, B.S. Lollar, E.L. Brodie, T.C. Hazen, G.L. Andersen, T.Z. DeSantis, D.P. Moser, D. Kershaw, and T.C. Onstott, Long-Term Sustainability of a high-energy, low-diversity crustal biome, Science 314, 479-482 (2006).
Ono, S., N.J. Beukes, D. Rumble III, and M.L. Fogel, Early evolution of atmospheric oxygen from multiple-sulfur and carbon isotope records of the 2.9 Ga Mozaan Group of the Pongola Supergroup, Southern Africa. South African Journal of Geology 109(97-108) (2006).
Ono, S., B. Wing, D. Johnston, J. Farquhar, and D. Rumble III, Mass-dependent fractionation of quadruple stable sulfur isotope system as a new tracer of sulfur biogeochemical cycles. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 70, 2238-2252 (2006).
Ono, S., B. Wing, D. Rumble, and J. Farquhar, High precision analysis of all four stable isotopes of sulfur (S-32, S-33, S-34 and S-36) at nanomole levels using a laser fluorination isotope-ratio-monitoring gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Chemical Geology 225(1-2), 30-39 (2006).
Sorensen, S. S., G.E. Harlow, and D. Rumble III, The origin of jadeitite-forming subduction-zone fluids: CL-guided SIMS oxygen-isotope and trace-element evidence. American Mineralogist 91, 979-996 (2006).
Cosca, M., D. Giorgis, D. Rumble III, and J.G. Liou, Limiting effect of UHP metamorphism on length scales of oxygen, hydrogen, and argon isotope exchange; an example from the Qinglongshan UHP ecologites, Sulu Terrane, China, International Book Series 9, 290-323 (2006).
Rumble, D., A mineralogical and geochemical record of atmospheric photochemistry. American Mineralogist 90, 918-930 (2005).