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Ms Emily K FallonPhD

Research Associate

Emily Fallon

Ms Emily K FallonPhD

Research Associate

Member of

Research interests

My research interests span across multiple fields including magmatic processes and timescales, volatiles in magmas, economic geology and deep-sea mining of SMS deposits but all centre around experimental petrology.

My PhD research investigated deep-sea hydrothermal vents (black smokers) in different global settings, and the environmental impact of seafloor massive sulphide (SMS) mining. As mining of SMS deposits edges closer to reality, it is vital that we have a full understanding of the geochemistry of the deposits and any toxicity impact associated with mining activity. Experiments were undertaken at low temperatures and seafloor pressures to simulate mining and the release of toxic elements at seafloor conditions. This type of study will help mining companies find deposits to mine efficiently, whilst controlling environmental impact as well as informing policy makers such as the International Seabed Authority. 

A 6-month Bristol EPSRC Impact Acceleration Grant allowed for collaboration with the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR) in Germany, who have exclusive rights for seafloor exploration in an area of the Indian Ocean (SE of Madagascar and Mauritius). This collaboration exploited my PhD work and assisted the BGR in assessing the toxicity potential of mining in their area. It also allowed access to rare and charismatic scaly-foot gastrpods, providing insight into tolerance levels at active vents.

Current NERC funded post-doctoral research is focused on more traditional volcanology and aims to experimentally determine the diffusion rates of a range of volatile species (F, Cl, OH, CO3) in apatite. I will investigate how apatite can be used as a tool to monitor degassing and short timescale histories of magmas in the days, weeks and months before they erupt. This will involve piston cylinder experiments at sub-volcanic pressures and temperatures and very accurate spatial analysis to measure diffusion profiles (SIMS, FTIR-ATR, EMPA)!

Specific techniques:

  • Cold seal pressure vessel apparatus (double capsule fluid-melt partitioning experiments, leaching experiments)
  • Piston cylinder apparatus (volatile diffusion experiments in apatite)
  • Electron microprobe analysis
  • Secondary mass ion spectrometry (SIMS)
  • Spectroscopy techniques including FTIR, ATR-FTIR


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Postal address:
Wills Memorial Building
Queens Road
United Kingdom