CODES – Centre for Ore Deposit and Earth Sciences

PhD - Exploration targeting from next-generation volcanic facies reconstruction, Cowal District


The Research Project

A critical and first step component of hydrothermal ore discovery is volcanic facies analysis, so that the geological context of ore deposits within a volcanic setting can be established. The traditional visual description and interpretation of volcanic rocks requires specialist training and knowledge that is developed over years. It is a time-consuming and somewhat subjective process to correlate rock units at the scale of a prospect and often a bottleneck to further operations. This project will improve discovery of ore deposits in Australia by combining traditional facies analysis approaches with the development of a novel, automated image-analysis statistical technique, which will permit the characterisation of individual volcanic units in terms of their crystal size distribution⎯and in an
unbiased way.

Crystals are ubiquitous in most volcanic rocks and therefore an excellent feature to be used as primary identifier. Outputs from these techniques will be combined with structural reconstructions and chemical analyses to infer stratigraphic and petrogenetic relationships of volcanic rocks in the Cowal district. The PhD project will work with other researchers and Industry (Evolution Mining) throughout the project.


The following eligibility criteria apply to this project:

  • The project is open to Australian and New Zealand (domestic) and to international candidates;
  • Research must be undertaken on a full-time basis;
  • Applicants must already have been awarded a First Class Honours degree or hold equivalent qualifications or relevant and substantial research experience in an appropriate sector;
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate strong research and analytical skills;
  • Applicants must be willing to conduct long periods of field work with Industry partners

Candidates from the following disciplinary backgrounds are encouraged to apply.  Knowledge and skills that will be ranked highly include:

  • Masters, publications, previous work with industry

More Information

Please contact the Primary Supervisor, Dr. Rebecca Carey (, School of Natural Sciences (Earth Sciences/CODES), for further information.

Closing Date

30 June, 2019.

Contact the nominated staff member as soon as possible to discuss an application for a 2019 start date.

Published on: 20 May 2019 12:28pm