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Geology and Geological Engineering Faculty


M. Stephen Enders
Interim Department Head
Research Professor
E-mail: menders@mines.edu
Office: BE 221D
Phone: 303-273-3066
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Economic Geology – a) Study of copper and gold deposits; b) Mine geology and geometallurgy; c) Geomicrobiology, bacteria & rock interaction; 2) Mineral Exploration, Mine Development & Operations – a) Greenfield and brownfield exploration; b) The business & economics of exploration; c) Innovation, R&D for the mining business



David Benson
Professor, Hydrogeology
E-Mail: dbenson@mines.edu
Office: BE 305C
Phone: 303-273-3806
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Fractional calculus and hydrology; 2) Self-similar random fields.

Alexander Gysi
Assistant Professor
E-mail: agysi@mines.edu
Office: BE 411A
Phone: 303-273-3828
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Lithogeochemistry; 2) Fluid-mineral interaction and element mobilization in the crust; 3) Hydrothermal ore deposits; 4) Geochemistry of critical metals; 5) CO2 sequestration; 6) Alkaline and peralkaline magmatic-hydrothermal systems; 7) Pegmatites; chemical thermodynamics and phase equilibria.

Wendy Harrison
Professor, Aqueous Geochemistry, Geochemical Modeling
E-mail: wharriso@mines.edu
Office: BE 305B
Phone: 303-273-3821
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Thermodynamic and experimental studies of chemical reactions in aqueous fluids; 2) Paleohydrologic and diagenetic evolution of sedimentary basins; 3) Environmental mineralogy and geochemistry; 4) Fluid-rock interactions during enhanced oil recovery processes; 5) Theoretical, experimental, and field studies of acid mine drainage; 6) Geology and human health; 7) Geoscience undergraduate education.

Yvette Kuiper
Associate Professor, Structural Geology, Field Geology, and Geochronology
E-mail: ykuiper@mines.edu
Office: BE 133
Phone: 303-273-3105
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Structural analysis and geochronology of complexly deformed metamorphic regions; 2) Link between microstructures and growth of accessory minerals with tectonic motions and the evolution of mountain belts and (super)continents; 3) Comparison of field structural data with numerical models that predict the formation and development of structures; 4) Development of shear zones and fold belts; 5) Use of geochronologic methods to date deformation and investigate rates of deformation; 6) Structural setting of ore deposits.

Reed Maxwell
Professor, Hydrology
Director, IGWMC
E-mail: rmaxwell@mines.edu
Office: BE 305E
Phone: 303-384-2456
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Watershed hydrology; 2) Groundwater-surface-water-land-surface interaction; 3) Land-atmosphere interactions; 4) Microbial subsurface contaminant transport; 5) Spectral scaling in watersheds; 6) Integrated watershed response to climate change; 7) Environmental risk assessment; 8) Development of numerical models; 9) Lagrangian methods and high-performance computing.

Alexei Milkov

Professor and Director, Potential Gas Agency
E-mail: amilkov@mines.edu
Office: BE 411C
Phone: 303-384-3887
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Petroleum geology and geochemistry; 2) Oil and gas exploration; 3) Petroleum systems analysis; 4) Assessment of exploration risks; 5) Resource assessment; 6) Geological emissions of methane (mud volcanoes, seeps); 7) Unconventional oil and gas resources (shale gas, coal bed methane, gas hydrates).


Thomas Monecke
Associate Professor, Economic Geology
E-mail: tmonecke@mines.edu
Office: BE 226C
Phone: 303-273-3841
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Volcanic and magmatic controls on the location and formation of precious and base metal deposits; 2) Shallow marine massive sulfide deposits and the VHMS-epithermal transition; 3) Texture of volcanic rocks and their evolution during diagenesis, hydrothermal alteration, and metamorphism; 4) Hydrothermal alteration of volcanic rocks as a tool to reconstruct fluid characteristics; 5) Economic geology of hydrothermal ore deposits; 6) Hydrothermal geochemistry of the rare earth elements.

Alexis Navarre-Sitchler
Assistant Professor, Aqueous Geochemistry
E-mail: asitchle@mines.edu
Office: BE 311C
Phone: 303-384-2219
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Aqueous geochemistry including water-rock interactions; 2) Interaction between fluid transport and mineral dissolution kinetics including the use of reactive transport modeling; 3) Characterization of natural materials using multiple techniques including X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, various synchrotron techniques and electron microprobe analyses; 4) Quantification of porosity using micro-computed tomography and small/ultra small-angle neutron scattering techniques; 5) Extrapolating laboratory data to field systems.


Richard Palin
Assistant Professor, Metamorphic Petrology
E-mail: rmpalin@mines.edu
Office: BE 311A
Phone: 303-273-3819
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) The mechanisms and physico-chemical effects of fluid–rock and melt–rock interactions in different metamorphic environments and geodynamic settings; 2) Developing and testing new activity–composition (a–x) relations and computational techniques for use in petrological phase equilibrium modeling; 3) Early-Earth evolution, and secular changes in metamorphism and tectonic styles since the Archean; 4) Metamorphism, partial melting, and phase assemblage characterization inside planetary interiors.

Piret Plink-Björklund
Associate Professor, Stratigraphy and Sedimentology
E-mail: pplink@mines.edu
Office: BE 411B
Phone: 303-384-2042
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Sedimentology and stratigraphy; 2) Record of climate, sea-level and tectonic changes in the sediments and sedimentary rocks with a special interest in the linkage of depositional systems from source to sink; 3) Outcrop studies in Precambrian to Quaternary successions.

Paul Santi
Professor, Engineering Geology, Hydrogeology
E-mail: psanti@mines.edu
Office: BE 305F
Phone: 303-273-3108
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Stabilization of landslides using wick drains; 2) Computer simulation of geotechnical and hazardous waste investigations; 3) Evaluation of effectiveness of debris flow mitigation in burned areas; 4) Landslide drainage analysis and design; 5) Analysis of rockfall hazard rating systems.

Christian V. Shorey
Teaching Professor and Assistant Department Head
E-mail: cshorey@mines.edu
Office: BE 221B
Phone: 303-273-3556
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Modeling the climatic controls on speleothem growth and isotopic incorporation; 2) Regional paleoclmatic reconstructions using speleothems and other proxies.

Kamini Singha
Professor, Hydrogeology
E-mail: ksingha@mines.edu
Office: BE 311E
Phone: 303-273-3822
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Hydrologic processes utilizing geophysical techniques, hydrologic tools, and mathematical simulation to improve predictive modeling; 2) Quantification of the "geophysical footprint" to constrain the operation of parameters controlling fluid flow and solute transport in various settings; 3) Fluid flow and contaminant transport in porous media and fractured rock as well as groundwater-surface-water interactions; 4) Water quality degradation and human behavior; 5) Imaging moisture dynamics in desert ecosystems; 6) Exploring changes in infiltration after fire; 7) Quantifying kinetics of iron reduction given electrical measurements. 

Stephen A. Sonnenberg
Professor and Charles Boettcher Distinguished Chair in Petroleum Geology
E-mail: ssonnenb@mines.edu
Office: BE 227B
Phone: 303-384-2182
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Sequence stratigraphy; 2) Tectonic influence on sedimentation; 3) Reservoir characterization; 4) Unconventional resources and all aspects petroleum traps.

Bruce Trudgill
Associate Professor, Petroleum Geology
E-mail: btrudgil@mines.edu
Office: BE 131
Phone: 303-273-3883
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Rift systems; 2) Structural influences on stratrigraphic architecture; 3) seismic interpretation of sedimentary rocks; 4) movement in salt systems.

Gabriel Walton
Assistant Professor, Engineering Geology, Underground Construction & Tunneling
E-mail: gwalton@mines.edu
Office: BE 311A
Phone: 303-384-2235
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Rock Mechanics; 2) Numerical modeling of slopes and underground works; 3) Rockmass characterization; 4) Applications of geophysics and remote sensing in Geological Engineering


Richard (Ric) F. Wendlandt
Professor, Geochemistry, Mineralogy
E-mail: rwendlan@mines.edu
Office: BE 411E
Phone: 303-273-3809
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Environmental and applied mineralogy; 2) Experimental geochemistry; 3) Reservoir characterization/petrophysics with an emphasis on the effects of clay minerals on rock and fluid properties; 4) Integration of experimental and numerical simulations of fluid-rock interactions; 5) Genesis of magmas and effects of volatile components on magmatic processes; 6) Igneous occurrences and their relation to continental rift structure, evolution, and tectonics.

Lesli J. Wood
Weimer Distinguished Chair and Professor, Geology
E-mail: lwood@mines.edu
Office: BE 227B
Phone: 303-273-3801
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) Quantitative seismic geomorphology of clastic basins; 2) Structural and sedimentary system interactions; 3) Submarine mass failures; 4) Petroleum geology; 5) Mobile shales; and 6) Geomorphology of Mars.

Wendy Zhou
Associate Professor, Engineering Geology and GIS
E-mail: wzhou@mines.edu
Office: BE 305D
Phone: 303-384-2181
Fax: 303-273-3859

Research Interests: 1) GIS applications in natural resource management, environmental impact study, and geohazard zonation; 2) SAR and PSInSAR applications in ground movement monitoring, such as ground subsidence, and landslide deformation rate; 3) Rock mass characterization; 4) Numerical modeling, such as finite element and finite difference methods, for ground thermal regime and stress-strain distribution in the rock or soil mass.


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