I am Pauline, PhD student at the Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA) of Barcelona (Spain), in the Surface Hydrology and Erosion group. During my PhD, I am focusing among other things on the spatial variation of isotopic composition of precipitation, at the event scale, in a small Mediterranean catchment.
Thanks to the Watson STSM, I had the opportunity to visit the Department of Environmental Sciences of the Jožef Stefan Institute (JSI) of Ljubljana (Slovenia) for 3 weeks, under the supervision of Polona Vreča, who is part of the SLOvenian Network of Isotopes in Precipitation (SLONIP).
During the stay, I learnt new laboratory techniques like how to perform a mass spectrometer analysis to determine the isotopic composition of hydrogen and oxygen in water, and how the tritium analyses are performed. I also discovered other uses of stable isotopes for food authentication for example, and I had the opportunity to enter an experimental nuclear reactor, used for educational purposes, environmental radioactive tracers production, and for multi-elemental neutron activation analyses. Finally, I received a precious help in my research from Polona, who gave me advices and a new look on my results.
In conclusion, during this short time, I not only gained knowledge in the fields of isotope hydrology, but I also broaden my horizons and made new connections with amazing people.