Welcome to our new Senior Technician, David Adams

David Adams is the new Senior Technician for the brand new JEOL 8530F Plus field-emission gun electron microprobe lab. He comes to the University of Auckland from the Denver Microbeam Lab at the United States Geological Survey (USGS) in Denver, Colorado. David has a Bachelor of Arts degree in German Language with a minor in Geology from and a Master of Science degree in Geology with a focus on volcanology and igneous petrology Baylor University in Texas, USA. David worked on a PhD in Geology at Oregon State University (OSU) and the beginning of his study briefly overlapped with the end of Mike Rowe’s PhD studies at OSU. David has a broad range of work and analytical instrumentation experience beginning during his Master’s degree study when he repaired and maintained the old Baylor University Geology Department’s AMR1000 Scanning Electron Microscope and used the universities electron microprobe and XRF in his Master’s thesis study of peralkaline rhyolites from Big Bend National Park, Texas, USA. This work experience continued during his PhD study when he worked as the student research assistant/technician on OSU’s new (at the time) CAMECA SX100 electron microprobe and used that instrument to study melt inclusions in olivine from Iceland and in plagioclase from the Juan de Fuca Ridge.

Following his time at OSU David worked in the USGS Mineral Resources team Denver Microbeam Lab for four years gaining experience and expertise in JEOL microprobes, and SEMs as well as LA-ICP-MS, XRD, XRF, USGS standard reference material creation, Raman, FTIR, and MicroCT. During this time, he conducted research on a broad range of topics including porphyry copper and molybdenum deposits, gold deposits, MVT deposits, Hawaiian volcano studies, melt-inclusion studies, and instrumentation-technique research and development. He also worked with multiple university students and researchers both national and international as well as other US governmental departments and organizations including the Department of Defense and the US Environmental Protection agency. His work with the EPA was vital to US congressional and US federal cases investigating a prosecuting corporate malfeasance in the asbestos contamination of Libby, Montana USA.

Following his four years at the USGS David moved to Perth, Western Australia to take up a Senior Research Officer position running the new JEOL 8530F electron microprobe facility in the Centre for Microscopy, Characterization and Analysis at the University of Western Australia for two years. Here he gained more responsibility and expertise in XRD, TEM, and SEM for cross-discipline use. At UWA he was also involved in research throughout Western Australia in gold, iron, sulphide, and rare earth element deposits.

After two years at UWA David moved to the ARC Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia working for three years as a Geochemist in charge of the electron microprobe, SEM, FTIR, and Raman spectroscopy laboratories and helped support the XRF, ICP-MS, ICP-MC, and TIMS laboratories.

In January 2016 David returned to the USGS Denver Microbeam lab where, for four years, once again worked as a geologist working in the Geology, Geochemistry, Geophysics team continuing his research in the areas of mineral resources, and volcanology as well as supporting a very wide range of research projects spanning geology, environment, analytical geochemistry, and human health.

We wish you good luck and all the best for your new job here at the University of Auckland.

Short field trip to Mt Taranaki

Last weekend (10.-12. Jan) a group of students went with field leader Dr. Geoffrey Lerner on a short field trip to Mt Taranaki. The field trip covered interesting outcrops of volcanic deposits as well as a hike on Taranaki itself.

During the first day we visited the Puke Ariki museum in New Plymouth and later in the day we hiked up on Paritutu Rock with an amazing view on Mt Taranaki. Paritutu Rock is the remnant of an old volcano.

The second day was focused on various deposits from Taranaki volcano and previous volcanoes in the area. For the first stop we visited the Stoney River to inspect some Lahar deposits and interpret possible scenarios. The second stop was at Dawson Falls where we looked at various tephra outcrops and of course a beautiful water fall. After a scenic drive around Taranaki we had one last stop at Corbett Park (Oakura) along the beach. There we had an perfectly exposed outcrop of the Maitahi debris avalanche  probably caused by a sector collapse of an old volcanic edifice. At the end of the day we paid a visit to the light festival in New Plymouth.

On the third and final day we hiked up on Mt Taranaki to the Tahurangi Lodge at an elevation of 1500 m. Along the hike we examined lava flows and ash layers.

This trip was organized and planned by Dr. Geoffrey Lerner and Michaela Dobson. Thank you for your efforts to make this trip an amazing weekend for everyone.


Group photo taken from our first stop on top of Paritutu Rock with Mt Taranaki in the background.

Picture in front of Dawson Falls with all participants of this field trip.

More impressions from the fieldtrip.


Shan de Silva is visiting Auckland in January

By: David Farsky

Shan de Silva, Professor of Volcanology at Oregon State University will be visiting Auckland for a short period and will give a talk on large silicic systems with the following title: Toba caldera, Sumatra: Insights into post-supereruption recovery at large calderas.
His talk will be on Monday 13th of January at 11am in the room 302-130.
Everyone is welcomed to join.