Geoscience for Africa
We bring together African geoscience expertise in the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences with local partners and collaborators to meet the geoscientific challenges of Africa. These challenges require cross-disciplinary solutions.
We aim to understand the geology, georesources, climate, hydrology and landscapes of critical regions in Africa, and to analyse how natural resources can be harnessed best for sustainable development.
Mineral and hydrocarbon resources, groundwater, paleoclimate, natural hazards and geoscience education and training are particular areas of focus.
Cuthbert, M. O. Groundwater recharge in global drylands: processes, quantification & sensitivities to environmental change. NERC NE/P017819/1. August 2017-July 2022, £717,000
McDonald, I. The Platreef magma event at the world-class Turfspruit PGE deposit: Implications for mineralization processes and Bushveld Complex stratigraphy. PhD studentship award, Ivanhoe Mines Ltd, £68,409
Fagereng, A. and Goda, K. PREPARE: Enhancing PREParedness for East African Countries through Seismic Resilience Engineering. EPSRC Global Challenges RF project, £208,000 to Cardiff
Blenkinsop, T. Geita Gold Mine wrap-up workshop. Angolgold Ashanti, £10,585
Blenkinsop, T. Mining Governance And Growth Support Project Contract No. Mom/Mggsp/ Comp-C/C/05. Malawi Government/World Bank. Contract to create a new mining-related curriculum for Chancellor College, University of Malawi, £40,000
Blenkinsop, T. Structural Interpretation - Zimplats Ngezi Mines. Zimplats, £9,742
Pearson, P. N. Tanzania Onshore Paleogene Integrated Coring (TOPIC). Approved ICDP grant, $1,000,000
- Cuthbert, M. et al. 2017. Modelling the role of groundwater hydro-refugia in East African hominin evolution and dispersal. Nature Communications 8 15696. (10.1038/ncomms15696)
- McDonald, I. et al. 2017. Cu-Ni-PGE mineralisation at the Aurora Project and potential for a new PGE province in the Northern Bushveld Main Zone. Ore Geology Reviews 80 , pp.1135-1159. (10.1016/j.oregeorev.2016.09.016)
- Lambert-Smith, J. et al. 2016. The Gounkoto Au deposit, West Africa: Constraints on ore genesis and volatile sources from petrological, fluid inclusion and stable isotope data. Ore Geology Reviews 78 , pp.606-622. (10.1016/j.oregeorev.2015.10.025)
- Maier, W. D. , Barnes, S. and Karykowski, B. 2016. A chilled margin of komatiite and Mg-rich basaltic andesite in the western Bushveld Complex, South Africa. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology 171 (6) 57. (10.1007/s00410-016-1257-5)
- Maier, W. D. et al. 2015. Petrogenesis of the ∼2·77 Ga Monts de Cristal Complex, Gabon: Evidence for Direct Precipitation of Pt-arsenides from Basaltic Magma. Journal of Petrology 56 (7), pp.1285-1308. (10.1093/petrology/egv035)
- Porta, G. D. , Webb, G. E. and McDonald, I. 2015. REE patterns of microbial carbonate and cements from Sinemurian (Lower Jurassic) siliceous sponge mounds (Djebel Bou Dahar, High Atlas, Morocco). Chemical Geology 400 , pp.65-86. (10.1016/j.chemgeo.2015.02.010)
- Pearson, P. N. and Hudson, W. 2014. Early Cenozoic tropical climate: report from the Tanzania Onshore Paleogene Integrated Coring (TOPIC) workshop. Scientific Drilling 18 , pp.13-17. (10.5194/sd-18-13-2014)
- Meneghini, F. et al., 2014. Fingerprints of late Neoproterozoic ridge subduction in the Pan-African Damara belt, Namibia. Geology 42 (10), pp.903-906. (10.1130/G35932.1)
- Omondi, P. et al., 2014. Changes in temperature and precipitation extremes over the Greater Horn of Africa region from 1961 to 2010. International Journal of Climatology 34 (4), pp.1262-1277. (10.1002/joc.3763)
Professor in Earth Science
- +44 (0)29 2087 5382
Professor in Earth Science
- +44 (0)29 2087 0232
Head of School, Earth and Ocean Sciences
- +44 (0)29 2087 5612 / +44 (0)29 2087 6689
Research Fellow and Lecturer
- +44 (0)29 2087 4051
ELEMENT facility for geochemical fingerprinting of Earth materials
This facility comprises:
- two Thermo X Series 2 quadropole ICP-MS spectrometers
- JY Horiba Ultima-2 ICP-OES spectrometer
- 213nm laser ablation system
- micromill and microbalance
- Olympus Delta Pro portable XRF spectrometer.
Dedicated fire assay laboratory
For analysis of precious metals in rocks, ores and other environmental samples. We have a wet geochemistry laboratory for preparation of samples in liquid form for ICP analysis.
Zeiss Sigma HD field emission gun analytical SEM
For high-resolution imaging and X-ray element mapping as well as quantitative analysis of major, minor and trace elements.
- FEI XL30 Field Emission Gun Environmental SEM for high-resolution imaging and semi-quantitative X-ray element analysis of samples
- Philips PW1710 Automated Powder X-ray diffractometer.
3D Seismic Lab
The 3D Seismic Lab comprises a state-of-the-art seismic interpretation and visualisation facility that supports research into diverse aspects of sedimentary basins, with emphasis on continental margins.
The key emphasis of the 3D Seismic Lab is on the development of 3D seismic methods and technology to the analysis of depositional and deformational processes.
Research students base their research on the large archive of data in the 3D Seismic Lab donated through collaborations with the petroleum industry and governments. Recent developments in our lab include seismic analyses of diagenesis and fluid flow on a basin scale, studies on the distribution of gas hydrates on continental margins, fluid-flow modelling through faults and structures, and the investigation of main geological controls on submarine landslides and channels.
The development of new quantitative methods in seismic interpretation is a key research topic within the 3D Seismic Lab.