Matthias Beyer, PhD

Matthias is the PI of ‘Isodrones’ and leader of a junior research group at the University of Brunswick, Germany. Per education, he is Hydrologist, but he always was fascinated by plants and ecohydrological aspects. In his PhD, Matthias was working in the large research initiative SASSCAL in Namibia, where the focus was on improving the understanding and estimations of groundwater recharge using water stable isotopes. In this project, Matthias realized how important plants are for the hydrological cycle and that water transport and groundwater recharge in water-limited environments are mainly controlled by these.

The idea of quantifying depth and magnitude of water uptake through trees by simply taking a core sample from a tree fascinated him, and he kept working on this topic. This culminated in a proposal combining classic and novel ecohydrologic methods (e.g. sap flow measurements and insitu isotope measurements) with non-invasive methods based on drones (UAV) to understand and identify deep root water uptake, which he presented to the Volkswagen foundation in 2016. After a long selection process, Matthias was chosen for the program and is a fellow of the Volkswagen Foundation since.

In his private life, Matthias is happily married. His second love is the ocean, and surfing is the sport that makes him happier than (almost) everything. He also likes Traveling, Surfskates, Bouldering, Yoga and Meditation.

Publications (first author):

  1. Beyer, M., Hipondoka, M., Hamutoko, J., & Wanke, H. (2018). Water resources in the Cuvelai-Etosha Basin. Biodiversity & Ecology, 6, 84–85.
  2. Beyer, M., Hamutoko, J. T., Wanke, H., Gaj, M., & Koeniger, P. (2018). Examination of deep root water uptake using anomalies of soil water stable isotopes, depth-controlled isotopic labeling and mixing models. Journal of Hydrology (Accepted for Publication).
  3. Beyer, M., Gaj, M., Königer, P., Tulimeveva Hamutoko, J., Wanke, H., Wallner, M., & Himmelsbach, T. (2018). Isotope hydrology for estimating groundwater recharge in water-limited environments: potential and limits. Grundwasser.
  4. Beyer, M., Koeniger, P., Gaj, M., Hamutoko, J. T., Wanke, H., & Himmelsbach, T. (2016). A Deuterium-based labeling technique for the investigation of rooting depths, water uptake dynamics and unsaturated zone water transport in semiarid environments. Journal of Hydrology.
  5. Beyer, M., Wallner, M., Bahlmann, L., Thiemig, V., Dietrich, J., & Billib, M. (2016). Rainfall characteristics and their implications for rain-fed agriculture: a case study in the Upper Zambezi River Basin. Hydrological Sciences Journal, 61(2).
  6. Beyer, M., Gaj, M., Hamutoko, J. T., Koeniger, P., Wanke, H., & Himmelsbach, T. (2015). Estimation of groundwater recharge via deuterium labelling in the semi-arid Cuvelai-Etosha Basin, Namibia. Isotopes in Environmental and Health Studies, 51(4).

Publications (co-author):

  1. Wanke, H., Beyer, M., Hipondoka, M., Hamutoko, J., Gaj, M., Koeniger, P., & Himmelsbach, T. (2018). The long road to sustainability: integrated water quality and quantity assessments in the Cuvelai-Etosha Basin, Namibia. Biodiversity & Ecology, 6, 75–83.
  2. Wanke, H., Gaj, M., Beyer, M., Koeniger, P., & Hamutoko, J. T. (2018). Stable isotope signatures of meteoric water in the Cuvelai-Etosha Basin, Namibia: Seasonal characteristics, trends and relations to southern African patterns. Isotopes in Environmental and Health Studies, 1–20.
  3. Himmelsbach, T., Beyer, M., Wallner, M., Grünberg, I., & Houben, G. (2018). Deep, semi-fossil aquifers in southern Africa: A synthesis of hydrogeological investigations in northern Namibia. Biodiversity & Ecology, 6, 66–74.
  4. Hamutoko, J. T., Wanke, H., Koeniger, P., Beyer, M., & Gaj, M. (2017). Hydrogeochemical and isotope study of perched aquifers in the Cuvelai-Etosha Basin, Namibia. Isotopes in Environmental and Health Studies, 53(4), 1–18.
  5. Ojwang, R. O., Dietrich, J., Anebagilu, P. K., Beyer, M., & Rottensteiner, F. (2017). Rooftop rainwater harvesting for Mombasa: Scenario development with image classification and water resources simulation. Water (Switzerland), 9(5).
  6. Gaj, M., Kaufhold, S., Koeniger, P., Beyer, M., Weiler, M., & Himmelsbach, T. (2017). Mineral mediated isotope fractionation of soil water. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, 31(3).
  7. Martínez-Capel, F., García-López, L., & Beyer, M. (2016). Integrating Hydrological Modelling and Ecosystem Functioning for Environmental Flows in Climate Change Scenarios in the Zambezi River (Zambezi Region, Namibia). River Research and Applications.
  8. Koeniger, P., Gaj, M., Beyer, M., & Himmelsbach, T. (2016). Review on soil water isotope-based groundwater recharge estimations. Hydrological Processes, 30(16).
  9. Gaj, M., Beyer, M., Koeniger, P., Wanke, H., Hamutoko, J., & Himmelsbach, T. (2016). In situ unsaturated zone water stable isotope (2H and 18O) measurements in semi-arid environments: A soil water balance. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 20(2).