The ‘A-team’ is the informal name that once identified Adrian Finch’s research group but which now represents a collaborative team of like-minded scientists working on applied mineralogy and petrology. Key topics include alkaline igneous petrogenesis, genesis models of critical metal resources and the information encoded in mineral chemistry and luminescence.
Curtis Rooks (2020) graduated from St Andrews after a dissertation on a Gardar topic, and worked as a research assistant on the HiTech AlkCarb project, particularly focussing on the outreach and legacy. He worked as a research assistant with HiTech AlkCarb colleagues at the University of Tubingen in Germany before starting a MSc by research back at St Andrews part sponsored by Stallion Resources.
Rob Webster (2020) graduated from St Andrews after a mapping project and dissertation on a Gardar topic. He is working on a MSc by research at St Andrews partly sponsored by a graduate award from the Society of Economic Geologists. The topic is the sulfur isotope evolution of the mantle beneath rift zones.
Dr Tim Kinnaird is a University Research Officer and Honorary Research Fellow. He is managing the St Andrews component to the TerraSAgE: Terraces as Sustainable Agricultural Environment consortium and also looks after the University Luminescence Dating Service. He works on the practicalities of OSL dating as well as some of the fundamental science of mineral luminescence.
Krzysztóf (Kris) Sokól, Iapetus (NERC funded) PhD student, jointly with Dr Jonathan Cloutier and Dr Madeleine Humphreys, University of Durham. CASE student with Greenland Rare Earth Projects Ltd.
Dr Aayush Srivastava is a Quaternary geologist with expertise in luminescence dating and aeolian geomorphology. For his recently completed doctoral degree at the University of Oxford, he applied luminescence dating techniques to reconstruct histories of dune accumulation in the Indian Desert, and further developed the accumulation records as proxies of desert climate change. Prior to his PhD, he obtained a BSc (Hons) degree in Geology from the University of Delhi and a MSc degree in Quaternary Science from Royal Holloway, University of London. Aayush is working with Dr Tim Kinnaird as a PDRA on the a luminescence dating project as part of the TerraSAgE: Terraces as Sustainable Agricultural Environment consortium.
Past Members of the A-team
Dr Will Hutchison, was initially funded by the EU-funded HiTech AlkCarb consortium but is now an independent research fellow funded by a UKRI fellowship. Will’s research is quantifying the conditions and processes that take place in the roof zones of subvolcanic magma chambers. He is photographed here on top of 1610 m summit in Motzfeldt, South Greenland. Will recently was awarded a UKRI personal fellowship which funds him to study ash eruptions in ice cores, which he holds at the University of St Andrews.
Prof Anouk Borst, was a post-doctoral research fellow funded initially by the NERC SoS RARE consortium, then by the HiTech AlkCarb consortium but now she is a lecturer at the University of St Andrews. Her work is looking at how the isotopes of lanthanide elements encode the geological history. She is also studying the structural state of lanthanide elements in common ore minerals. Anouk was awarded the 2020 Max Hey Medal by the Mineralogical Society for her work on critical metal systems, and was appointed in 2021 as Associate Professor at the University of Leuven, Belgium.
Dr Nicky Horsburgh completed a PhD studentship funded jointly by the NERC funded SoS RARE consortium and the University of St Andrews, supervised jointly with Dr Jonathan Cloutier. Following the submission of her thesis, she became a PDRA working for the HiTech AlkCarb consortium and then a Lecturer at the University of St Andrews. She returned to geotechnics in 2021 and now works for geo-rope.
Joshua Hughes, Iapetus (NERC funded) PhD student was based at University of Durham, jointly with Dr Madeleine Humphreys. He now head geologist with Arras Resources working in Kazakhstan.
Dr Adam Zaniewski (2018) PhD University College Cork on a joint project led by Dr John Reavy on the Ross of Mull granitoid complex.
Dr Emma Hunt (2015) NERC funded PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Dr Colin Donaldson. Previously postdoctoral research fellow in magma chamber dynamics at University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa; now living in Baton Rouge in Louisiana, USA.
Dr Rob Campbell (2014) PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Dr Ed Stephens.
Dr Helen Salmon (2013) PhD Birkbeck College, University of London, jointly supervised with Professor Hilary Downes. Now exploration consultant and director of her own exploration company.
Prof Richard Taylor (2013) (right) STFC PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Dr Colin Donaldson and Professor Fred Mosselmans (Diamond Light Source). Now Professor of Gemmology, China University of Geosciences Wuhan, China, and consultant in gemmology.
Prof Georgina King (2011) NERC funded PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Dr Ruth Robinson. Now: Associate Professor at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland.
Christine Wendler MSc (2011) MSc by research, Technical University of Freiberg (jointly with Professor Jens Gotze).
Dr Anil Chamara Jayasundera (2010) EPSRC funded PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Professor Phil Lightfoot. Now Senior Lecturer in materials chemistry, University of Peradeniya, Kandy, Sri Lanka.
Henrik looking for rare minerals, Ilimaussaq, South Greenland
Prof Henrik Friis (2009) PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Dr Colin Donaldson and Dr Terry Williams (Natural History Museum, London). Now Associate Professor of Mineralogy, University of Oslo, Norway.
Dr Jamie McCreath (2009) PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Dr Colin Donaldson. Previously exploration geologist; now consultant in renewable energy.
Dr Johannes Schonenberger (2008) PhD University of Tubingen, German, jointly supervised with Professor Gregor Markl. Now Principal Geologist at Statoil, Trondheim, Norway.
Dr Laura Foster (2007) PhD St Andrews, jointly supervised with Dr Nicola Allison. Now Postdoctoral research fellow in climate change at the University of Bristol.
Dr Suzanne Grogan (2004) Joint supervision with Dr John Reavy, University College Cork, Ireland.
Andrew Hobbs MPhil (1999) MPhil, University of Hertfordshire.
Dr Kathryn Goodenough (1997) NERC funded PhD Edinburgh University, jointly with Professor Brian Upton and Professor Ian Parsons. Now Principal Researcher at the British Geological Survey, Edinburgh.