Lepre, Christopher J.

Fe Oxide Lab, PI (click here)


  • B.A. Montclair State University
  • M.A. Rutgers University
  • Ph.D. Rutgers University

Research Interests

Stratigraphy and rock magnetism as applied to dating, sedimentology, and paleoclimate research. Diffuse reflectance spectroscopy to identify Fe oxides in paleosols. Magnetostratigraphy of the Olduvai Subchron. Interrelationship of terrestrial ecosystem change and human evolution in the East African rift system. Current interests include early Mesozoic geomagnetic polarity time scale and paleoenvironments of the Newark rift basin and Colorado Plateau.

Current funding

NSF standard grant award of $87,208

  • Project Title: High Resolution Rainfall Records for Hominin Environments of the Turkana Basin, Kenya (award #1818805). A three-year project focusing on the use of magnetic minerals in paleosols to reconstruct the impacts of Pliocene-Pleistocene rainfall variations on paleo-ecosystem change and human evolution. NSF programs Sedimentary Geology and Paleobiology and Archaeometry are jointly funding the award.


Paleoanthropology Society, Geological Society of America, American Geophysical Union.

Undergraduate Courses taught

  • A Walk Through Time: Evolution of Mammals (01:460:213 NS)
  • Planet Earth (01:460:100 NS).

Recent Publications


           Lepre et al. 2011                             Harmand et al. 2015

pdf copies at:

  • Quinn RL, Lepre, CJ (2020) Revisiting the pedogenic carbonate isotopes and paleoenvironmental interpretation of Kanapoi. Journal of Human Evolution 140, 102549
  • Lepre, CJ (2019) Constraints on Fe-oxide formation in monsoonal Vertisols of Pliocene Kenya using rock magnetism and spectroscopy. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 20.
  • Kent,DV,Olsen,PE,Lepre,C,Rasmussen,C,Mundil,R,Gehrels,GE,etal (2019). Magnetochronology of the entire Chinle Formation (Norian age) in a scientific drill core from Petrified Forest National Park (Arizona, USA) and implications for regional and global correlations in the Late Triassic. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 20.
  • Mana, S, Hemming, S, Kent, DV, Lepre, CJ (2019). Temporal and stratigraphic framework for paleoanthropology sites within East-Central Area 130, Koobi Fora, Kenya. Frontiers in Earth Science 7: 230.
  • Kent, D.V., Olsen, P.E., Rasmussen, C., Lepre, C., Mundil, R.,  Irmis, R.B.,  Gehrels, G.E.,  Giesler, D.,  Geissman, J.W., and Parker, W.G., 2018, Empirical evidence for stability of the 405-kiloyear Jupiter-Venus eccentricity cycle over hundreds of millions of years: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 115, 6153–6158.
  • Lepre, C. J., 2017, Crevasse‐splay and associated depositional environments of the hominin‐bearing lower Okote Member, Koobi Fora Formation (Plio‐Pleistocene), Kenya: The Depositional Record, 3, 161-186.
  • Sun, J., Chillrud, S.N., Mailloux, B.J.,  Stute, M.,  Singh, R., Dong, H.,  Lepre, C.J., and Bostick, B.C., 2016, Enhanced and stabilized arsenic retention in microcosms through the microbial oxidation of ferrous iron by nitrate: Chemosphere, 144, 1106-1115.
  • Harmand, S., Lewis, J.E., Feibel, C.S., Lepre, C.J., Prat, S., Lenoble, A., Boës, X., Quinn, R.L., Brenet, M., Arroyo, A. and Taylor, N., 2015. 3.3-million-year-old stone tools from Lomekwi 3, West Turkana, Kenya. Nature, 521, 310-315.
  • Lepre, C.J., 2014. Early Pleistocene lake formation and hominin origins in the Turkana–Omo rift. Quaternary Science Reviews, 102, 181-191.
  • Quinn, R.L., Lepre, C.J., Feibel, C.S., Wright, J.D., Mortlock, R.A., Harmand, S., Brugal, J.P. and Roche, H., 2013. Pedogenic carbonate stable isotopic evidence for wooded habitat preference of early Pleistocene tool makers in the Turkana Basin. Journal of Human Evolution, 65, 65-78.
  • Lepre, C.J., Roche, H., Kent, D.V., Harmand, S., Quinn, R.L., Brugal, J.P., Texier, P.J., Lenoble, A. and Feibel, C.S., 2011. An earlier origin for the Acheulian. Nature, 477, 82-85.
  • Lepre, C.J. and Kent, D.V., 2010. New magnetostratigraphy for the Olduvai Subchron in the Koobi Fora Formation, northwest Kenya, with implications for early Homo. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 290, 362-374.

Web sites

Fe Oxide Lab

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