Ph.D. project on critical and strategic minerals

We are looking for a passionate candidate to carry out a PhD project on carbonatite geology and niobium and rare earth element mineralization. The project will focus on the Saint- Honoré alkaline complex in Quebec. Carbonatite is exploited for niobium giving exceptional access to the mineralizing events.

The project will focus on the petrography and geochemistry of carbonatites and associated syenites. In particular, the selected student will study the reactions between syenites and carbonatites, which are probably key elements in the concentration of niobium. He will also have to study the chemistry of pyrochlore, carbonate, apatite and magnetite grains to model the evolution of the magma(s). The student will acquire sought-after expertise on critical and strategic minerals associated with alkaline rocks.

The project will be supervised by L. Paul Bédard from the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (Chicoutimi, Canada), Anne-Aurélie Sappin from the Geological Survey of Canada (Quebec City, Canada), and Michel Grégoire from Géoscience Environnement Toulouse (Toulouse, France). This research team brings a combination of exceptional expertise: field geology, mineralogy, geochemistry, metallogeny, and mantle petrology. In addition, the student will join the Centre d'Études sur les Ressources minérales de l' Université du Québec à Chicoutimi, which comprises a major research team (professors and students) on critical minerals and metals. The student will have access to cutting-edge analytical equipment such as laser and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer systems (LA-ICP-MS), one of which consists of a femtosecond laser and a time-of-flight mass spectrometer (TOFMS).

The project is funded by the Targeted Geoscience Initiative program of the Geological Survey of Canada (Natural Resources Canada). The candidate must speak and write in English and French. He will have a scholarship of $ 21,000 per year. The candidate may complete this scholarship by occupying teaching assistant positions at UQAC. He may also apply for several internal UQAC scholarships, some of which are reserved for students in Earth Sciences.

If you are interested by this project, please send your CV, a cover letter and the contact details of two references to Paul Bédard ( and Anne-Aurélie Sappin) before the 2nd October 2021. In order to be eligible for the research grant associated with this project, please also apply to the Government of Canada's Research Assistant Program via the following link:

posted: 02 September 2021     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.