PhD project in Earth Sciences

Influence of metamorphism and fluids on the quality of graphite deposits in the Grenville Province

Location: Centre Eau Terre Environnement, 490 rue de la Couronne, Québec (Qc), G1K 9A9
Starting date: Summer or Fall 2023
Funding: INRS guarantees financial support to all students. A scholarship of $25,000 per year for three years is available for this project.
Supervisor: Renaud Soucy La Roche |

Research project description

The Grenville Province covers an extensive area north of the St. Lawrence River from Lake Ontario to Labrador and is mostly composed of amphibolite to granulite facies metamorphic rocks. It results from long-lived Mesoproterozoic to early Neoproterozoic tectonic and magmatic activity along the southeast margin of Laurentia that culminated in a final continent-continent collision comparable or even larger than the Himalaya-Tibet orogen. The Grenville Province contains numerous metasedimentary sequences rich in graphite, including world-class deposits. Graphite is a key industrial mineral for the transition to a green economy. This PhD project will study the influence of two geological factors on graphite quality (flakes size and purity): metamorphic evolution (number of events and timescales of metamorphism) and remobilization of graphite by hydrothermal fluids or anatectic melt. Three graphite deposits will be targeted, in partnership with Nouveau Monde Graphite and Lomiko Metals. The research will involve a combination of field work, detailed petrography, graphite carbon isotopes analysis, thermobarometry and/or phase equilibrium modeling, and various petrochronological approaches (in situ U-Pb on monazite, zircon or xenotime; Lu-Hf on garnet). The project will be carried out in close collaboration with Professor Bertrand Rottier (Laval University) and geologists from the Ministère des Ressources naturelles et des Forêts, and with the support of Professors Carl Guilmette, Crystal LaFlamme and Georges Beaudoin (Laval University).

Required qualifications

  • Master’s degree (MSc) in Earth sciences, geological engineering or equivalent
  • Fieldwork experience, ideally with deformed high-metamorphic grade rocks
  • Strong interest in metamorphic petrology and geochronology
  • Bilingualism (French, English) is an asset

Commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion

Professor Soucy La Roche encourages all qualified individuals to apply, especially women, members of visible and ethnic minorities, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities, members of LGBTQ2+ communities or others who identify with socially and/or economically marginalized groups. Special circumstances and non-traditional backgrounds will be considered in the evaluation of applications. Professor Soucy La Roche is committed to supervising the candidate in the language of their choice (English or French) to overcome language barriers and to encourage their inclusion in the research team. If needed, French courses are offered free of charge to facilitate integration into the INRS and Quebec City communities.

Submit an application

Candidates must send their application to Professor Soucy La Roche by email ( The application package must include the following documents:

  • Cover letter describing your experiences and research interests and if needed, explaining any special circumstances relevant to the evaluation of the application
  • CV
  • University transcripts (unofficial)
  • Names and contact information of three references


Candidates are invited to contact Professor Soucy La Roche directly by email with any questions about the project or the study environment.

posted: 02 February 2023     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.