Professor Jenni Barclay, University of East Anglia, School of Environmental Sciences
Professor Marian Holness, University of Cambridge, Department of Earth Sciences
Dr Eduardo Mansur, Norwegian Geological Survey
Layered intrusions represent deep-seated magma chambers that never erupted. Not only that layered intrusions provide us with an opportunity to study how magma cools and differentiates in a plutonic environment, but they also host precious metals such as platinum group elements, Ti, and V.
Layered intrusions represent a natural laboratory to study deep magmatic processes, however, some are often affected by tectonic events. In such cases, their primary rock’s microstructure and geochemistry will be modified. The study area, Bjerkreim-Sokndal (BKS) layered intrusion in Southern Norway, provides ample evidence of deformation, representing the best place to study both magmatic and tectonic processes. The main aim of this project is to decipher between magmatic and post-emplacement microstructure to understand the formation and evolution of the intrusion. Additionally, the project will focus on how deformation has affected ore mineralisation hosted in BKS in terms of their microstructure and their geochemistry. The effect of deformation on ore mineralogy is essential for understanding the ore endowment of precious metals, as these metals are critical in the societal transition to greener sources of energy to achieve a carbon-zero future.
The key objectives are to 1) differentiate between magmatic and post-emplacement microstructure, and 2) identify the effect of deformation on the geochemistry of the main rock-forming minerals. The completion of both objectives will entail a combination of 1) fieldwork and petrography; 2) electron backscatter diffraction analyses (EBSD at UEA); 3) QEMSCAN elemental mapping (University of Cambridge) and 4) microprobe analyses (University of Cambridge). The field trip will be carried out in year 1 (two weeks) and year two (two weeks) in Bjerkeim Lobe of the BKS intrusion.
The student will gain training in the field geology where they learn how to record magmatic texture, mineralogical variations, and deformation structures. The student will be trained to analyse samples by EBSD and electron microprobe.
We are looking for applicants that have a degree in Geology or related discipline, enthusiasm for field work, and a strong motivation to succeed.