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Dr David William Rees Jones

Dr David William Rees Jones

Research Associate in Subduction-Zone Geodynamics

Bullard Laboratories


I use mathematical analysis and computational simulations to understand a wide range of geophysical and environmental fluid flows. I focus on situations in which melting and solidification are significant, such as the generation and transport of molten magma from deep within the Earth, and the formation of sea ice in the Polar Oceans.

Currently, I am a Research Associate in subduction-zone geodynamics at Bullard Laboratories, working with Dr John Rudge. I am also a part of the FoaLab Laboratory for Geodynamics at the University of Oxford with Prof. Richard Katz. Subduction zones are a crucial part of the Earth's tectonic system, which controls the cycling of volatile chemicals such as water and carbon on long geological timescales. We are developing physical models of the coupled fluid flow and thermal and chemical transport, and implementing these in open-source simulation code based on PETSc and available for community use. I am also working on physical models of reactive flow instabilities, which may explain the formation of tabular dunites in ophiolites. 

I am also interested in the interaction between sea ice and fluid dynamics. Sea ice is a sensitive part of the climate system and is responding dramatically to Arctic warming. I worked as a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Physics at the University of Oxford in the group of Prof. Andrew Wells where I worked on frazil-ice formation. I studied Mathematics, leading to a PhD on convective flow within sea ice in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge, supervised by Prof. Grae Worster.



Ice Dynamics ; Geophysics ; Computer Simulations


  • Magma mixing and ascent
  • Volatile geochemical cycling
  • Numerical Modelling


Key Publications

D. W. Rees Jones & M. G. Worster (2013). Fluxes through steady chimneys in a mushy layer during binary alloy solidificationJ. Fluid Mech., 714, 127–151.  

D. W. Rees Jones & M. G. Worster (2013). A simple dynamical model for gravity drainage of brine from growing sea ice. Geophys. Res. Lett., 40(2), 307–311.  

D. W. Rees Jones & M. G. Worster (2014). A physically based parameterization of gravity drainage for sea-ice modeling. J. Geophys. Res., 119.  

D. W. Rees Jones & M. G. Worster (2015). On the thermodynamic boundary conditions of a solidifying mushy layer with outflow. J. Fluid Mech., 762.  

M. G. Worster & D. W. Rees Jones (2015). Sea ice thermodynamics and brine drainage. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A, 373.  

D. W. Rees Jones & A. J. Wells (2015). The solidification of disk-shaped crystals from a weakly supercooled binary melt. Phys. Rev. E., 72.  

C. Horvat, D. W. Rees Jones, S. Iams, D. Schroeder, D. Flocco, D. Feltham (2017). The frequency and extent of sub-ice phytoplankton blooms in the Arctic Ocean. Sci. Adv. 3.  

D. W. Rees Jones & A. J. Wells (2018). Frazil-ice growth rate and dynamics in mixed layers and sub-ice-shelf plumes. The Cryosphere, 12, 25-38.  

D. W. Rees Jones, R. F. Katz, J. F. Rudge and M. Tian (2018). Thermal impact of magmatism in subduction zones. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett481, 73–79.  

D. W. Rees Jones & R. F. Katz (2018). Reaction-infiltration instability in a compacting porous medium.  J. Fluid Mech. 852, 5–36.  

J.-H. Kim, W. Moon, A. J. Wells, J. Wilkinson, T. Langton, B. Hwang, M. Granskog & D. W. Rees Jones (2018). Salinity control of thermal evolution of late summer melt ponds on Arctic sea ice. Geophys. Res. Lett. 45.

N. G. Cerpa, D. W. Rees Jones & R. F. Katz (under review). Consequences of glacial cycles for magmatism and carbon transport at mid-ocean ridges.