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Research and Impact

We are a vibrant and collaborative community of 50 academic and postdoctoral staff, and 70 postgraduate research students (PhD and MScR). We conduct and disseminate rigorous research that deepens our understanding of the Earth and environment, and that transforms and enhances practices and outcomes in academia, in industry, and amongst practitioners. Our research includes both curiosity-driven, blue-skies studies to understand Earth systems and processes, and research that directly benefits society.

We pursue our research agenda through three complementary approaches:

Collection of field data

Complementing traditional and geophysical approaches, we use satellites, unoccupied aerial platforms, and research vessels to collect spatial, geodetic, seismic, and spectrographic data. Field work increasingly includes engagement with stakeholder communities through social science approaches.

Laboratory analysis and experiments

World-class analytical facilities include elemental and isotopic analysis of Earth and environmental materials, a new facility for high temperature and high pressure rheometry of geomaterials, and a stake in central facilities for x-ray analysis and tomography, and SEM/TEM. Experimental facilities include a state-of-the-art Rock Mechanics Laboratory, a new Volcanology Fluid Dynamics laboratory, and a new Hot Lab for high temperature and high pressure experiments on geomaterials.

Mathematical and numerical modelling

Much of the Department’s research is highly quantitative, including mathematical and numerical modelling of physical and chemical processes, and statistical analysis of large datasets. These approaches are not confined to traditional ‘geophysics’, but permeate research across the Department.