2 PhD Scholarships available at the School of Earth
and Planetary Sciences

We are seeking candidates for TWO fully-funded international or domestic PhD Scholarships for research to be conducted as part of the ARC Discovery project: 'Deciphering the tectonic record of the early Earth'.

The main objective of the project is to constrain the age and pressure-temperature conditions recorded by ancient metamorphic rocks (Mesoarchean and older) worldwide, and interpreting these data within the context of early Earth geodynamics.

Both positions will involve a siginificant component of fieldwork. Students will be trained in remote fieldwork in the Pilbara craton, Western Australia, during the first year of the project. Using rocks collected in the field and legacy samples, one of the students (project A) will concentrate on lower-grade samples from 'greenstone belts' and on garnet geochronology, and undertake their main fieldwork component in southern Africa. The other student (project B) will concentrate on higher-grade 'gneiss terrains' and on zircon/monazite/rutile geochronology, and will spend a year in India as part of a joint PhD program between Curtin and IIT Kharagpur.

Taking advantage of the extensive experience of the project investigators--Tim Johnson (Curtin), Chris Clark (Curtin), Michael Brown (Maryland) and Jeff Vervoort (Washington State), both students will be given full training in field techniques, sample preparation, geochronology and phase equilibrium modelling.

The successful candidates will be self-reliant, enjoy outdoor pursuits and have a strong sense of adventure. Some experience of phase equilibrium modelling (in particular THERMOCALC) and/or geochronology is preferred, but not essential. Candidates should have research experience in the form of a written thesis at BSc (Honours) or MSc level.

To apply, please send a CV and brief letter explaining your research interests and experience, along with your preferred choice of project (A or B) and contact details of three referees in a SINGLE PDF (maximum 5 pages of A4) to Tim Johnson (tim.johnson@curtin.edu.au). We will begin reviewing applications on January 6, 2020. The positions will remain open until filled.

The successful candidates will access state-of-the-art analytical facilities in the John De Laeter Centre (https://jdlc.curtin.edu.au/facilities/). Curtin is a dynamic, research-intensive University that has achieved national and international stature. Earth Sciences, and the sub-disciplines of Geology and Geochemistry, were awarded the maximum ranking of 5 in the recent Excellence in Research for Australia assessment. These factors, coupled with recent successes in ARC grants and University investment, will ensure that students are hosted within a vibrant research environment.

Requests for further details and/or any other questions should be directed via email to Tim Johnson (tim.johnson@curtin.edu.au) with the subject line: "Deciphering the tectonic record of the early Earth - PhD".

posted: 05 December 2019     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.