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Petrology: Igneous, Metamorphic and Volcanic Studies

 

Lava Flow
View of East Lae`apuki lava delta, Mauna Loa, Hawaii, with photographer standing on top of sea cliff for scale. (Credit: Image courtesy USGS, #0634. February 23, 2005)
This grouping combines research into igneous, metamorphic and volcanic processes to enhance understanding of global tectonics as well as their more immediate impacts on our surficial environment. Our strategy is to integrate geological observational studies (field work, petrology, geochemical and isotopic analyses) with interdisciplinary work on multiphase flow in deformable media and the properties of the materials involved.

Current Research

  • Mantle heterogeneity and melt transport: Isotope geochemistry, microanalysis and thermodynamics are used to characterise compositional heterogeneity in the convecting mantle. These observations constrain our statistical and computational models of the long-term evolution of Earth's geochemical structure and now highlight the relationship between heterogeneity and melt transport.
  • Mantle convection and lithospheric structure: The study of mafic and ultramafic rocks from ocean islands, mid-ocean ridges, large igneous provinces and the continental interiors is used to probe mantle thermal structure and flow field and test models of mantle convection and lithospheric stability.
  • Magma chambers: Observations of rock textures and compositional microanalyses are coupled with theoretical models and the results of laboratory experiments to understand magma chamber processes, including evolution of crystal mushes at chamber margins and mixing in the chamber interior.
  • Volcanic processes: The establishment of remote, high-resolution measurements of volcanic gases in conjunction with analyses of melt inclusions to model the physical processes occurring during volcanic eruptions.
  • Thermodynamics, Mountain Building and Crustal Evolution: Quantitative estimates of changes in pressure and temperature are being made using mineral compositional zonation and thermodynamic databases. The complexity of zoning can be linked to tectonic movements in the Earth's crust.

We have well-equipped geochemical laboratories for the preparation and geochemical analysis of minerals and rocks. The Department has laboratories for high pressure and temperature experiments and also for fluid dynamical investigations.

Recent publications in this area.

People specializing in this area

Academic Staff
Name Phone Email Research Topic
Bickle, Michael +44 (0) 1223 333484 mb72@esc.cam.ac.uk
Edmonds, Marie +44 (0) 1223 333463 marie.edmonds@esc.cam.ac.uk
Gibson, Sally +44 (0) 1223 333401 sally@esc.cam.ac.uk
Holness, Marian +44 (0) 1223 333434 marian@esc.cam.ac.uk
Maclennan, John +44 (0) 1223 761602 jcm1004@cam.ac.uk
Neufeld, Jerome +44 (0) 1223 765709 j.neufeld@bpi.cam.ac.uk
Shorttle, Oliver +44 (0) 1223 768328 os258@esc.cam.ac.uk
Weller, Owen +44 (0) 1223 333464 ow212@cam.ac.uk
Williams, Helen +44 (0) 1223 333411 hmw20@cam.ac.uk
Woods, Andy +44 (0) 1223 765702 andy@bpi.cam.ac.uk
Research Staff
Name Phone Email Research Topic
Buisman, Iris +44 (0) 1223 333402 ib330@cam.ac.uk
Day, Jason +44 (0) 1223 765282 jafd2@cam.ac.uk
Freymuth, Heye +44 (0) 1223 333455 hf325@cam.ac.uk
Popel, Aleksej +44 (0) 1223 768357 ap499@cam.ac.uk
Taylor, Rich +44 (0) 1223 333433 rjt79@cam.ac.uk
Valdes, Maria +44 (0) 1223 333433 mcv31@cam.ac.uk
Vukmanovic, Zoja +44 (0) 1223 333 474 zv211@cam.ac.uk
Research Students
Name Phone Email Research Topic
Barber, Nicholas +44 (0) 1223 333441 ndb38@cam.ac.uk
Baxter, Rachel +44 (0) 1223 333432 rjmb3@cam.ac.uk
Crosby, James +44 (0) 1223 768357 jcc85@cam.ac.uk
Gilmore, Kieran kg382@cam.ac.uk
Gleeson, Matthew +44 (0) 1223 333438 mlmg3@cam.ac.uk
Gordon, Charlotte +44 (0) 1223 333432 cg712@cam.ac.uk
Guimond, Claire cmg76@cam.ac.uk
Jackson, Charlotte +44 (0) 1223 33482 cj340@cam.ac.uk
Landon-Browne, Ayesha arrl3@cam.ac.uk
Mason, Emily +44 (0) 1223 364919 em572@cam.ac.uk
Miocevich, Sophie +44 (0) 1223 333425 srm81@cam.ac.uk
Reekie, Callum +44 (0) 1223 333482 cdjr2@cam.ac.uk
Relph, Katy +44 (0) 1223 333442 ker42@cam.ac.uk
Soderman, Carrie +44 (0) 1223 333441 cs801@cam.ac.uk
Walton, Craig +44 (0) 1223 333449 crw59@cam.ac.uk
Whyte, Andrew +44 (0) 1223 333425 ajw291@cam.ac.uk
Wieser, Penny +44 (0) 1223 333482 pew26@cam.ac.uk
Woitischek, Julia +44 (0) 1223 333544 jw943@cam.ac.uk
Emeritus and College Teaching Staff
Name Phone Email Research Topic
Bunbury, Judith +44 (0) 1223 765260 jmb21@esc.cam.ac.uk
Holland, Tim +44 (0) 1223 333466 tjbh@cam.ac.uk
Reed, Stephen +44 (0) 1223 333417 sjbr@esc.cam.ac.uk
All members of the Department
Name Phone Email Research Topic
Barber, Nicholas +44 (0) 1223 333441 ndb38@cam.ac.uk
Baxter, Rachel +44 (0) 1223 333432 rjmb3@cam.ac.uk
Bickle, Michael +44 (0) 1223 333484 mb72@esc.cam.ac.uk
Crosby, James +44 (0) 1223 768357 jcc85@cam.ac.uk
Day, Jason +44 (0) 1223 765282 jafd2@cam.ac.uk
Edmonds, Marie +44 (0) 1223 333463 marie.edmonds@esc.cam.ac.uk
Freymuth, Heye +44 (0) 1223 333455 hf325@cam.ac.uk
Gibson, Sally +44 (0) 1223 333401 sally@esc.cam.ac.uk
Gilmore, Kieran kg382@cam.ac.uk
Gleeson, Matthew +44 (0) 1223 333438 mlmg3@cam.ac.uk
Gordon, Charlotte +44 (0) 1223 333432 cg712@cam.ac.uk
Guimond, Claire cmg76@cam.ac.uk
Holland, Tim +44 (0) 1223 333466 tjbh@cam.ac.uk
Holness, Marian +44 (0) 1223 333434 marian@esc.cam.ac.uk
Jackson, Charlotte +44 (0) 1223 33482 cj340@cam.ac.uk
Landon-Browne, Ayesha arrl3@cam.ac.uk
Maclennan, John +44 (0) 1223 761602 jcm1004@cam.ac.uk
Mason, Emily +44 (0) 1223 364919 em572@cam.ac.uk
Miocevich, Sophie +44 (0) 1223 333425 srm81@cam.ac.uk
Reekie, Callum +44 (0) 1223 333482 cdjr2@cam.ac.uk
Relph, Katy +44 (0) 1223 333442 ker42@cam.ac.uk
Shorttle, Oliver +44 (0) 1223 768328 os258@esc.cam.ac.uk
Soderman, Carrie +44 (0) 1223 333441 cs801@cam.ac.uk
Taylor, Rich +44 (0) 1223 333433 rjt79@cam.ac.uk
Valdes, Maria +44 (0) 1223 333433 mcv31@cam.ac.uk
Walton, Craig +44 (0) 1223 333449 crw59@cam.ac.uk
Weller, Owen +44 (0) 1223 333464 ow212@cam.ac.uk
Whyte, Andrew +44 (0) 1223 333425 ajw291@cam.ac.uk
Wieser, Penny +44 (0) 1223 333482 pew26@cam.ac.uk
Woitischek, Julia +44 (0) 1223 333544 jw943@cam.ac.uk
Woods, Andy +44 (0) 1223 765702 andy@bpi.cam.ac.uk