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Dr. Jacob Geersen

Vorname Nachname
Leibniz-Institut für Ostseeforschung
Seestrasse 15
D-18119 Rostock
+49 381 5197 418
+49 381 5197 440


Marine geologic processes and their interplay with climate and anthropogenic stressors form the heart of my research. I investigate these processes in open oceans, marginal seas, continental margins and coastal waters. To derive information from the seafloor I use hydroacoustic data in conjunction with visual observations and sedimentary and geochemical archives. Wherever possible the surface data are complemented by seismic images of the sub-seafloor at different scales, ranging from high-resolution sub-bottom profiler data to deep-penetrating seismic reflection lines.



Since 11/2023

Senior scientist at the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde (IOW)

01/2021 - 10/2023

Temporary Positions for Principal Investigators funded through the DFG at Kiel University

01/2017 - 07/2017

Parental leave

08/2014 - 12/2020

Postdoctoral research fellow in The Cluster of Excellence “The Future  Ocean” and GEOMAR

01/2015 - 08/2015

Parental leave

05/2012 - 04/2014

Marie Curie research fellow at the University of Southampton, National  Oceanography Centre

01/2012 - 04/2012

Postdoc at GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel

01/2009 - 12/2011

PhD project within the SFB 574 at the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences (IFM-GEOMAR)

10/2006 - 03/2009

Master study  „Marine Geosciences” at the University of Bremen

10/2003 - 08/2006

Bachelor study „Geosciences“ at the University of Bremen



Geersen, J., Bradtmöller, M., Schneider von Deimling, J., Feldens, P., Auer, J., Held, P., Lohrberg, A., Supka, R., Hoffmann, J.J.L., Eriksen, B.V., Rabbel, W., Karlsen, H-J., Krastel, S., Brandt, D., Heuskin, D. and Lübke, H. (2024). A submerged Stone Age hunting architecture from the Western Baltic Sea. PNAS.

Schneider von Deimling, J., Hoffmann, J., Geersen, J., Koschinski, S., Lohrberg, A., Gilles, A., Belkin, I., Böttner, C., Papenmeier, S. & Krastel, S. (2023). Millions of seafloor pits, not pockmarks, induced by vertebrates in the North Sea. Communications Earth & Environment, 4(1), 478.

Xia, Y., Kopp, H., Klaeschen, D., Geersen, J., Ma, B. and Schnabel, M. (2023), Seamount and ridge subduction at the Java margin, Indonesia: Effects on structural geology and seismogenesis. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 128, e2022JB026272.

Li, S., Geersen, J., Krastel, S. and Li, W. (2023), Submarine canyon morphology along the Chilean marine forearc (19°S–45°S). Geomorphology, 108796.

Tréhu, A.M., Bangs, N.L., Contreras-Reyes, E., Davenport, K. and Geersen, J. (2023), Imaging the source region of recent megathrust earthquakes along the Chile subduction zone: A summary of results from recent experiments. Journal of South American Earth Sciences, 127.

Ma, B., Geersen, J., Klaeschen, D., Contreras-Reyes, E., Riedel, M., Xia, Y., Tréhu, A.M., Lange, D. and Kopp, H. (2023), Impact of the Iquique Ridge on structure and deformation of the north Chilean subduction zone. Journal of South American Earth Sciences, 124.

González, F.A., Bello-González J.P., Contreras-Reyes, E., Tréhu, A.M. and Geersen, J. (2023), Shallow structure of the Northern Chilean marine forearc between 19°S - 21°S using multichannel seismic reflection and refraction data. Journal of South American Earth Sciences, 123.

Ma, B., Geersen, J., Lange, D., Klaeschen, D., Grevemeyer, I., Contreras-Reyes, E., Petersen, F., Riedel, M., Xia, Y., Tréhu, A.M. and Kopp, H. (2022). Megathrust reflectivity reveals the updip limit of the 2014 Iquique earthquake rupture. Nature Communications, 13(1), 1-8.

Tang, Q., Geersen, J., Düring, A., Unverricht, D., Schneider von Deimling, J., Lenz, K. F., Li, W. and  Krastel, S. (2022). Sequence of Multiple Slope Failures in the Headwall Area of the Giant Sahara Slide Complex at the NW African Continental Margin. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, e2021GC010283.

Urlaub, M., Geersen, J., Petersen, F., Gross, F., Bonforte, A., Krastel, S. and Kopp, H. (2022), The submarine boundaries of Mount Etna`s unstable southeastern flank. Frontiers in Earth Science, 234.

Ren, Y., Geersen, J. and Grevemeyer, I. (2022), Impact of spreading rate and age-offset on oceanic transform fault morphology. Geophysical Research Letters, e2021GL096170.

Geersen, J., Sippl, C. and Harmon, N. (2022), Impact of bending related faulting and oceanic plate topography on slab hydration and intermediate depth seismicity. Geosphere, 18(2), 562-584.

Xia, Y., Geersen, J., Klaeschen, D., Ma, B., Lange, D., Riedel, M., Schnabel, M. and Kopp, H. (2021), Marine forearc structure of eastern Java and its role in the 1994 Java tsunami earthquake. Solid Earth Discussions, 1-19.

Contreras-Reyes, E., Obando-Orrego, S., Geersen, J. and Bello-Gonzales, J.P. (2021), Density structure, flexure, and tectonics of the Iquique Ridge, northern Chile. Journal of South American Earth Sciences,  103423..

Petersen, F., Lange, D., Ma, B., Grevemeyer, I., Geersen, J., Klaeschen, D., Contreras‐Reyes, E., Barrientos, S., Tréhu, A., Vera, E. and Kopp, H. (2021), Relationship between subduction erosion and the up‐dip limit of the 2014 Mw 8.1 Iquique earthquake. Geophysical Research Letters.

Böttner, C., Callow, B.J., Schramm, B., Gross, F., Geersen, J., Schmidt, M., Vasilev, A., Petsinski, P. and Berndt, C. (2021), Focused methane migration formed pipe structures in permeable sandstones: Insights from UAV‐based digital outcrop analysis in Varna, Bulgaria. Sedimentology.

Brandl, P.A.,Hannington, M.D., Geersen, J., Petersen, S.and Gennerich, H.-H. (2020), The submarine tectono-magmatic framework of Cu-Au endowment in the Tabar-to-Feni island chain, PNG. Ore Geology Reviews 121, 103491.

Geersen, J., Festa, A. and Remitti, F. (2020), Structural constraints on the subduction of mass transport deposits in convergent margins. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 500, 115-128.

Geersen, J. (2019), Sediment-starved trenches and rough subducting plates are conducive to tsunami earthquakes. Tectonophysics, 762, 28-44.

Böttner, C., Berndt, C., Reinardy, B. T. I., Geersen, J., Karstens, J., Bull, J. M., Callow, B. J., Lichtschlag, A., Schmidt, M., Elger, J., Schramm, B. and Haeckel, M. (2019), Pockmarks in the Witch Ground Basin, central North Sea. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 20.

Geersen, J., Ranero, C. R., Klaucke, I., Behrmann, J. H., Kopp, H., Tréhu, A. M., Contreras-Reyes, E., Barckhausen, U. and Reichert, C. (2018), Active tectonics of the North Chilean marine forearc and adjacent oceanic Nazca Plate. Tectonics, 37, 4194-4211.

Riedel, M., Côté, M. M., Urlaub, M., Geersen, J., Scholz, N. A., Naegeli, K. and Spence, G. D. (2018), Slope failures along the deformation front of the Cascadia margin: linking slide morphology to subduction zone parameters. Geological Society of London Special Publications, 477, SP477.33.

Böttner, C., Gross, F., Geersen, J., Crutchley, G., Mountjoy, J. und Krastel, S. (2018), Marine forearc extension in the Hikurangi margin: New insights from high-resolution 3D seismic data. Tectonics, 37(5), 1472-1491.

Geersen, J., Ranero, C. R., Kopp, H., Behrmann, J. H., Lange, D., Klaucke, I., Barrientos, S., Diaz-Naveas, J., Barckhausen, U. and Reichert, C. (2018), Does permanent extensional deformation in lower forearc slopes indicate shallow plate-boundary rupture?. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 489, 17-27.

Urlaub, M., Geersen, J., Krastel, S. and Schwenk, T. (2018), Diatom ooze: Crucial for the generation of submarine mega-slides?. Geology, 46(4), 331-334.

Geersen, J., Völker, D. and Behrmann, J. H. (2018), Oceanic Trenches. In: Submarine Geomorphology. Ed. by Micallef, A., Krastel, S. and Savini, A. Springer, Cham, 409-424.

Geersen, J., Scholz, F., Linke, P., Schmidt, M., Lange, D., Behrmann, J. H., Völker, D. and Hensen, C. (2016),Fault zone controlled seafloor methane seepage in the rupture area of the 2010 Maule Earthquake, Central Chile. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 17(11), 4802-4813.

Lange, D., Geersen, J., Barrientos, S., Moreno, M., Grevemeyer, I., Contreras-Reyes, E. and Kopp, H. (2016), Aftershock seismicity and tectonic setting of the 16 September 2015 Mw 8.3 Illapel earthquake, Central Chile. Geophysical Journal International, 206(2), 1424-1430.

Gross, F., Krastel, S., Geersen, J., Behrmann, J. H., Ridente, D., Chiocci, F. L., Bialas, J., Papenberg, C., Cukur, D., Urlaub, M. and Micallef, A. (2015), The limits of seaward spreading and slope instability at the continental margin offshore Mt Etna, imaged by high-resolution 2D seismic data. Tectonophysics, 667, 63-76.

Geersen, J., Ranero, C. R., Barckhausen, U. and Reichert, C. (2015), Subducting seamounts control interplate coupling and seismic rupture in the 2014 Iquique earthquake area. Nature Communications, 6, 8267.

Geersen, J., Bull, J. M., McNeill, L. C., Henstock, T. J., Gaedicke, C., Chamot-Rooke, N. and Delescluse, M. (2015), Pervasive deformation of an oceanic plate and relationship to large >Mw 8 intraplate earthquakes: The northern Wharton Basin, Indian Ocean. Geology 43(4), 359-362.

Völker, D., Geersen, J., Contreras-Reyes, E., Sellanes, J., Pantoja, S., Rabbel, W., Thorwart, M., Reichert, C., Block, M. and Weinrebe, W. (2014), Morphology and geology of the continental shelf and upper slope of southern Central Chile (32°S-43°S). International Journal of Earth Sciences, 103(7), 1765-1787.

Behrmann, J. H., Völker, D., Geersen, J., Harders, R. and Weinrebe, W. (2014), Size-Frequency Relationship of Submarine Landslides at Convergent Plate Margins: Implications for Hazard and Risk Assessment. In: Submarine Mass Movements and Their Consequences: 6th International Symposium. Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research, 37 . Springer International Publishing, Cham, 165-175.

Völker, D., Wehrmann, H., Kutterolf, S., Iyer, K., Rabbel, W., Geersen, J. and Hoernle, K. (2014), Constraining input and output fluxes of the southern Central Chile Subduction Zone: water, chlorine, sulfur. International Journal of Earth Sciences, 103(7), 2129-2153.

Geersen, J., Völker, D., Behrmann, J. H., Kläschen, D., Weinrebe, W., Krastel-Gudegast, S. and Reichert, C. (2013), Seismic rupture during the 1960 Great Chile and the 2010 Maule earthquakes limited by a giant Pleistocene submarine slope failure. Terra Nova 25, 472-477.

Geersen, J., McNeill, L., Henstock, T. J. and Gaedicke, C. (2013), The 2004 Aceh-Andaman Earthquake: Early clay dehydration controls shallow seismic rupture. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 14(9), 3315-3323.

Scholz, F., Hensen, C., Schmidt, M. and Geersen, J. (2013), Submarine weathering of silicate minerals and the extent of pore water freshening at active continental margins. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 100, 200-216.

Völker, D., Geersen, J., Contreras-Reyes, E. and Reichert, C. (2013), Sedimentary fill of the Chile Trench (32–46°S): volumetric distribution and causal factors. Journal of the Geological Society, 170, 723-736.

Meyer, M., Geersen, J., Krastel, S., Schwenk, T. and Winkelmann, D. (2012), Dakar Slide offshore Senegal, NW-Africa: Interaction of stacked giant mass-wasting events and canyon evolution. In: Submarine mass movements and their consequences. , ed. by Yamada, Y. Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research . Springer, Dordrecht, 177-188.

Völker, D., Geersen, J., Weinrebe, W. and Behrmann, J. (2012), Submarine mass wasting off Southern Central Chile: Distribution and possible mechanisms of slope failure at an active continental margin. In: Submarine Mass Movements and their Consequences. , ed. by Yamada, Y. Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research, 31 . Springer, Dordrecht, 379-390.

Krastel, S., Wynn, R. B., Georgiopoulou, A., Geersen, J., Henrich, R., Meyer, M. and Schwenk, T. (2012), Large scale mass wasting at the NW-African Continental Margin: some general implications for mass wasting at passive continental margins. In: Submarine mass movements and their consequences. , ed. by Yamada, Y. Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research . Springer, Dordrecht, 189-199.

Geersen, J., Behrmann, J. H., Völker, D., Krastel, S., Ranero, C. R., Diaz-Naveas, J. and Weinrebe, R. W. (2011), Active tectonics of the South Chilean marine fore arc (35°S - 40°S). Tectonics, 30, TC3006.

Geersen, J., Völker, D., Behrmann, J. H., Reichert, C. and Krastel, S. (2011), Pleistocene giant slope failures offshore Arauco Peninsula, Southern Chile. Journal of the Geological Society, 168, 1237-124.

Völker, D., Scholz, F. and Geersen, J. (2011), Analysis of submarine landsliding in the rupture area of the 27 February 2010 Maule earthquake, Central Chile. Marine Geology, 288(1-4), 79-89.

Pierau, R., Henrich, R., Preiß-Daimler, I., Krastel, S. and Geersen, J. (2011), Sediment transport and turbidite architecture in the submarine Dakar Canyon off Senegal, NW-Africa. Journal of African Earth Sciences, 60(3), 196-208.