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Texas A&M University
O&M Building, Room 608
MS 3146,
College Station, Texas 77843


GEOSCIENCES 401/601 - Earth's Polar Regions: Science, Society, and Discovery

GEOSCIENCES 430 - Global Science and Policy Making

OCEANOGRAPHY 251 - Introduction Oceanography

Dr. Mahlon C. Kennicutt II

Professor Emeritus

Ph.D. Oceanography, Texas A&M University, 1980

B.S. Chemistry, Union College, 1974

Research Interests

  • Organic geochemistry and environmental chemistry
  • Application of new analytical methods to marine organic geochemistry
  • Organic geochemistry of recent sediments
  • Hydrocarbon seepage and associated fauna
  • Molecular stable isotope geochemistry


  • Professor, Oceanography, Texas A&M University, 2002-present
  • Director, Sustainable Development,Office of the Vice President for Research, 2004-2008
  • Team Leader, Sustainable Coastal Margins Program,  2004-2008
  • Director, Geochemical and Environmental Research Group (GERG), Texas A&M University 1998-2004
  • Deputy Director of Environmental Sciences, Geochemical and Environmental Research Group; Texas A&M University, 1996-1998
  • Senior Research Scientist, Oceanography, Texas A&M University, 1991-2002
  • Associate Research Scientist, Oceanography, Texas A&M University, 1984-1991
  • Assistant Research Scientist, Oceanography, Texas A&M University, 1981-1984
  • Department of Energy Postdoctoral Fellow and Research Associate, University of Tulsa, 1980-1981
  • Research Consultant, AMOCO Production Company, 1975

Seminal Publications

  • Brooks, J.M., M.C. Kennicutt II, R.R. Fay, T.J. McDonald, and R. Sassen, 1984. "Thermogenic gas hydrates in the Gulf of Mexico," Science 225: 409-411.
  • Kennicutt M.C. II, J.M. Brooks, R.R. Bidigare, T.L. Wade, and R.R. Fay. 1985. "Vent type taxa in a hydrocarbon seep region on the Louisiana slope," Nature 317 (6035): 351-353.
  • Childress, J.M., C.R. Fisher, J.M. Brooks, M.C. Kennicutt II, R. Bidigare, and A.E. Anderson, 1986. "A methanotrophic marine molluscan (Bivalvia, Mytilidae) symbiosis: Mussels fueled by gas," Science, 233, 1306-1308.
  • Brooks, J.M., M.C. Kennicutt II, C.R. Fisher, S.A. Macko, K. Cole, J.J. Childress, R.R. Bidigare, R.D. Vetter.  1987. "Deep sea hydrocarbon seep communities: Evidence for energy and nutritional carbon sources". Science 238: 1138-1142.
  • Fisher, C.R., M.C. Kennicutt II and J.M. Brooks, 1990. "Stable carbon isotopic evidence for carbon limitation in hydrothermal vent vestimentiferans." Science 247: 1094-1096.
  • Childress, J.J., R. Lee, N.K. Sanders, H. Felbeck, D.R. Oros, A. Toulmond, D. Desbrayeres, M.C. Kennicutt II, and J. M. Brooks, 1993."High Environmental PCO2 Facilitates Carbon Uptake in Hydrothermal Vent Tubeworms" Nature 362: 147-149.
  • Laws, E.M., B.N. Popp, R.R. Bidigare, M.C. Kennicutt II, and S.A. Macko, 1995. "Dependence of phytoplankton carbon isotopic composition on growth rate and [CO2]aq: Theorectical considerations and experimental results" Geochemical Cosmochimca Acta 59: 1131-1138. (Best Paper in Organic Geochemistry in 1995).
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