Philippe Kerhervé


Dr, Enseignant-Chercheur UPVD

Section 37 CNU

CEFREM, Université de Perpignan

52, avenue Paul Alduy
66860, Perpignan Cedex, France

Tel  :    33 (0)4 68 66 22 07
Fax :    33 (0)4 68 66 20 96

Email :



  • Research activities:

Transfer and fate of the particulate organic material (POM) and microplastics (MPs) in a coastal zone from sources (rivers, surface ocean, melting freshawaters of glaciers) to deposition areas (prodelta, continental shelf, sub-marine canyons, deep basins and fjords).

  • Objectives:

- to define the origine and nature of the POM and MPs
- to determine the distribution and fate of POM and MPs

- to assess the role of floods, storms, and dense water cascading in the transfer of the terrestrial material.

  • Analytic tools:

- Elemental (OC%, N%) and isotopic (d13C et d15N) analyzes by EA-IR/MS (Isoprime)
- biochemical analyses: total/hydrosoluble sugars, proteins, lipids

  • Study areas:

- The Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean Sea)

- Kongsfjorden or "Kings Bay" (Svalbard, Norway)

  • Strategy and scientific frameworks:

My strategy is based on a simulteous sampling within all the compartments making up the continental margin (rivers, prodeltas, continental shelf, sub-marine canyons). This strategy allows to follow the distribution of the terrestrial material in the ocean and to study the effect of extrem meteo-climatic (strong oceanic and continental winds, rainfall) and hydrologic events (floods, dense shelf-water cascading) on the transfer of this material.

This implies a survey on:
- five small Mediterranean coastal rivers (Têt, Agly, Aude, Orb, Hérault) as well as the largest Mediterranean river (Rhône). ANR CHACCRA, MOOSE-MISTRALS.
- the Rhodanian prodelta (ANR CHACCRA)
- the Lacaze-Duthiers and Creus Canyons (Prog. Europ. HERMES  et HERMIONE)
- the deep basin (1000-2500m) (Prog. Europ. SESAME, HERMES, HERMIONE)

- the melting and turbid freshawaters from tidal glaciers in the Kongsfjorden, an Arctic fjord (ANR ECOTAB, EC2CO/IPEV ESCOFAR)


  • Thesis supervision

- Mel CONSTANT (Thèse MRT, Oct.2015-2018): "Sources and fate of microplastics in a Mediterranean coastal environment: case of the Gulf of Lions"

- Marion STABOLZ (Thèse MRT, defended on the 05/12/2013. "Impact of dense water formations on particulate organic matter dynamics: Application to the Gulf of Lions margin")
- Marina HIGUERAS (Thèse MRT, defended on the 01/07/2014. "Impact of an eastern storm on the transfer of particulate organic matter into the Gulf of Lions (NW Meditterranean Sea". 

  • Collaborations:

- GRCGeociències Marines (Univ. Barcelona): Miquel CANALS, Toni CALAFAT, Anna SANCHEZ-VIDAL

- MIO (Univ. Marseille-Luminy): Richard SEMPERE, Jean-François RONTANI, Christos PANAGIOTOPOULOS

- LOB/LECOB (Univ. Paris6/Banyuls): Audrey PRUSKY, François CHARLES

- LSCE (Gif/Yvette): Christophe RABOUILLE

- BIAF (Univ. Angers): Christophe FONTANIER

- CEREGE (Univ. Aix-Marseille): Olivier RADAKOVITCH

- LEMAR (IUEM Brest): Nathalie MORATA


  • Research programmes:

- MERMEX-Fleuves (WP3 de MERMEX), C.Rabouille LSCE-Gif/Yvette, Rhône River

- MARHONE (Eccorev), O.Radakovitch CEREGE-Aix, Rhône River

- ESCOFAR (EC2CO/IPEV 2014), P.Kerhervé, Arctic fjord of Svalbard. Article (AFP-Sc&Avenir), photo, photo 2., film

- MORTIMER (CNRS-LEFE), J-F Rontani, MIO-Marseille, degradation (photo and auto-oxidations) of the POM

- GRANOFLUX (EC2CO-DRIL), W.Ludwig, characteristics of the riverine particles


  • Other functions:

Member of the University Academic Council, Research Committee / Conseil académique, Commission Recherche

Member of the board in charge of: Licence 2 STE+BioEco and Master 2 GMEA

Member of board of external doctoral thesis / Membre du jury de thèse extérieure:

 - Christos Panogiotopoulos (LMGM, Luminy-Marseille, Resp. Thèse: M.Bianchi). "Distribution moléculaire et état de dégradation des sucres combinés dans la matière organique particulaire". Thèse soutenue le 31/10/2002.

     - Flora Toussaint (LSCE-Gif/Yvette, C.Rabouille, thesis defended on the 03/12/2013). Variabilité temporelle des processus biogéochimiques influençant le carbone organique terrigène dans les sédiments du pro-delta du Rhône.

      - Elsa Stetten (UPMC, F.Baudin/A.Prusky, thesis defended on the 24/11/2015). Origine, distribution et réactivé de la matière organique associé aux lobes terminaux du système turbiditique du Congo.

- Xavier Tubau (Université de Barcelone, G.Lastras/M.Canals). Analysis of submarine canyon systems from continental margins with contrasting characteristics, and their role on the transport and accumulation of marine litter. 13/11/2015

     - Marie-Aimeré Galleron (MIO, Univ. Aix-Marseille, O.Radakovitch and J-F. Rontani). Dégradation of terrestrial particulare organic matter discharged by rivers in Mediterranean Sea: processes, interactions and global impacts. 20/09/2016


  • Teaching:

Licence 1 et 2: Paleontology, Environmental crisis & Mass extinction.

Groupe Facebook fermé "Paléontologie évolutive & Crises Environnementales" (pour étudiants et tout autre passionné)

Groupe Facebook fermé "Forum Géosciences" (pour étudiants et tout autre passionné)

Master 1 GMEA: Oceanography, Biogeochemistry

Master 2 GMEA: Marine pollutions, Biogeochimical fluxes, Continent/océan interface, Specificities of the Mediterranean Sea

Groupe Facebook fermé "Master Sciences de la Mer Parcours GMEA UPVD" (pour étudiants et tout autre passionné)


  •  Dernières productions scientifiques:

28   CALLeja M.L., Kerhervé P., Bourgeois S., Kedra X., Leynaert A., DEVRED E., Morata N. (2017). Effect of increase glacier discharge on phytoplankton bloom dynamics and pelagic geochemistry in a high Arctic fjord. In publication in Progress in Oceanography

        Lienart C., Savoye N., Bozec Y., Breton E., Conan P., David V., Feunteun E., Grangeré K., Kerhervé P., Lebreton B., Lefebvre S., L’Helguen S., Mousseau L., Raimbault P., Richard P., Riera P., Sauriau P-G., Schaal G., Aubert F., Aubin S., Bichon S., Boinet C., Bourrasseau L., Bréret M., Caparros J., Cariou T., Charlier K., Claquin P., Cornille V., Corre A-M., Costes L., Crispi O., Crouvoisier M., Czamanski M., Del Amo Y., Derriennic H., Dindinaud F., Durozier M., Hanquiez V., Nowaczyk A., Devesa J., Ferreira S., Fornier M., Garcia F., Garcia N., Geslin S., Grossteffan E., Gueux A., Guillaudeau J., Guillou G., Joly O., Lachaussée N., Lafont M., Lamoureux J., Lecuyer E., Lehodey J-P., Lemeille D., Leroux C., Macé E., Maria E., Pineau P., Petit F., Pujo-Pay M., Rimelin-Maury P., Sultan E. (2017) Dynamics of particulate organic matter composition in coastal systems: a spatio-temporal study at multi-systems scale. Progress in Oceanography. Lienart et al., 2017

BOURGEOIS S., KERHERVE P., CALLEJA M-L., MANY G., MORATA N (2016) Glacier inputs influence organic matter composition and prokaryotic distribution in a high Arctic Fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard). Journal of Marine Systems, 164, 112-127.Bourgeois et al., JMS, 2016

Fagervold S. K., Bourgeois S., Pruski A., Charles F., Kerhervé P., Vetion G. and Galand P.E.(2014)River organic matter shapes microbial communities in the sediment of the Rhone prodelta. The ISME Journal, 8, 2327–2338. Fagervold et al., ISMEJ, 2014

Higueras M., Kerhervé P., Sanchez-Vidal A., Calafat A., Ludwig W., Verdoit-Jarraya M., Heussner S., and Canals M. (2014) Biogeochemical characterization of the riverine organic matter transferred to the NW Mediterranean Sea. Biogeosciences, 11, 157-172, 2014. Higueras et al., BG, 2014

Sanchez-Vidal A., Higueras M., Martí E., Liquete C., Calafat A., P. Kerhervéand M. Canals. (2013) Biogeochemical Characterization of Terrestrial Organic Matter Delivered to the North Catalan Margin, Western Mediterranean. Progress in Oceanography, 118, 71-80. Sanchez-Vidal et al., PIO, 2013

CATHALOT C., Rabouille C., Tisnerat-Laborde N., TOUSSAINT F;, Kerhervé P., Buscail R., LOFTIS K., Sun M-Y., Tronczynski J., AZOURY S., Lansard B., Treignier C., Pastor L., TESI T. (2013) The fate of river organic carbon in coastal areas: a study in the Rhône River delta using multiple isotopic (d13C, ∆14C) and organic tracers. Geochemica et Cosmochemica Acta, 118, 33-55. Cathalot et al., GCA, 2013

TOUSSAINT F., TISNERAT-LABORDE N., CATHALOT C., BUSCAIL R., KERHERVE P., RABOUILLE C. (2013). Depositional processes of organic matter in the Rhone River delta (Gulf of Lions, France) traced by density fractionation coupled with ∆14C and d13C. Radiocarbon, 55(3-4). Toussaint et al., RC, 2013

Stabholz M., Durrieu de Madron X., Canals M., Khripounoff A., Taupier-Letage I., Testor P., Heussner S., Kerhervé P., Delsaut N., Houpert L., Lastras G., and Denneliou B. (2013) Impact of open-ocean convection on particle fluxes and sediment dynamics in the deep margin of the Gulf of Lions. Biogeosciences 10, 1097-1116.

DUROS P.,FONTANIER C.,METZGER E.,CESBRON F., DEFLANDRE B., SCHMIDT S., BUSCAIL R., ZARAGOSI S., KERHERVE P., RIGAUD S., DELGARD M-L. and JORISSEN F.J (2013) Live (stained) benthic foraminifera from the Cap-Ferret Canyon (Bay of Biscay, NE Atlantic): a comparison between the canyon axis and the surrounding areas, Deep-Sea Research I, 74, 98-114, Duros et al., DSR, 2013

Goineau, A., Fontanier, C., Jorissen, F., Buscail, R., Kerhervé, P., Cathalot, C., Pruski, A. M., Lantoine, F., Bourgeois, S., Metzger, E., Legrand, E., and Rabouille, C., 2012. Temporal variability of live (stained) benthic foraminiferal faunas in a river-dominated shelf – Faunal response to rapid changes of the river influence (Rhône prodelta, NW Mediterranean). Biogeosciences 9, 1367-1388. Goineau et al., BG, 2012

BOURGEOIS S., PRUSKI A.M., SUN M.-Y., BUSCAIL R., LANTOINE F., KERHERVE P., VETION G., RIVIERE B., CHARLES F. (2011) Distribution and lability of land-derived organic matter in the surface sediments of the Rhône prodelta and the adjacent shelf (Mediterranean Sea, France): a multi proxy study. Biogeosciences, 8, 3107-3125. Bourgeois et al., BG, 2011

Goineau A., Fontanier C., Jorissen F.J., Lansard B., Buscail R., Mouret A., Kerhervé P., Zaragosi S., Ernoult E., Artéro C., Rabouille C., Anschutz P., Metzger E. (2011) Live (stained) benthic foraminifera from the Rhône prodelta (Gulf of Lion, NW Mediterranean): environmental controls on a river-dominated shelf. Journal of Sea Research, 65 (1), 58-75. Goineau et al., JOSR, 2011

SANCHEZ-VIDAL A., PASQUAL C., KERHERVÉ P., HEUSSNER S., CALAFAT A., PALANQUES A., DURRIEU DE MADRON X., CANALS M., and PUIG P. (2009) "Across margin export of organic matter traced by stable isotopes during and off cascading events, Northwestern Mediterranean Sea". Limnology & Oceanography, 54(5), 1488-1500.Sanchez etal LO.pdf

FONTANIER C., JORISSEN F. J., LANSARD B., MOURET A., BUSCAIL R., SCHMIDT S., KERHERVÉ P., BURON F., ZARAGOSI S., HUNAULT G., ERNOULT E., ARTERO C., ANSCHUTZ P., RABOUILLE C. (2008) Live foraminifera from the open slope between Grand Rhône and Petit Rhône canyons (Gulf of Lions, NW Mediterranean). Deep-Sea Resaerch Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, 55(11), 1532-1553.Fontanier et al 2008.pdf

SANCHEZ-VIDAL A., PASQUAL C., KERHERVÉ P., CALAFAT A., HEUSSNER S., PALANQUES A., DURRIEU de MARION X., CANALS M., PUIG P. (2008) Impact of dense shelf water cascading on the transfer of organic matter to the deep western Mediterranean basin. Geophysical Research Letters, 35, L05605.Sanchez et al GRL.pdf


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