Geometry, evolution and implications of Syn-rift to post-rift transition of the Proto-Atlantic

Dr Douglas Paton & Dr Richard Collier
This PhD will build upon existing Basin Structure Research off the Namibian margin and address whether the insight from Namibia are applicable to Brazil and other margins. The project will provide a a better understanding of this critical, but poorly constrained, stage of lithospheric extension. Exploration implications will focus on improving the understanding of subsalt plays, rift-transition reservoir distribution and possible controls on Aptian source distribution.

Investigating rift basin evolution by integrating geometrical analysis with Finite Element Modelling

Dr Douglas Paton, Prof. Quentin Fisher & Dr Tony Crook
The evolution of rift basins can be studied in a number of ways, including geometrical analysis, or physical/numerical modelling. This PhD will: (i) use well constrained geometrical models of rift basins/normal fault systems to calibrate the results of the Geomechanical Finite Element Modelling (FEM); and (ii) use the FEM results to develop a better understanding of the physical processes involved in basin evolution.

The evolution of volcanic passive margins - coupling restorations with heat flow

Dr Douglas Paton, Dr Andrew McCaig and Dr Sofya Titarenko
Fundamental to this project is the integration of an understanding of igneous petrology processes with observations made using high quality industry seismic reflection data using the expertise available in Leeds. In particular, the studentship will examine the following key objectives: (1) Prediction of the mode (magmatic vs detachment) of crustal accretion in Atlantic margins at various latitudes using bathymetric signatures from the present day ridge crest; (2) Evaluation of similar structures on available seismic reflection profiles and the subsequent reconstruction of the geometrical evolution and accumulation of sediments; (3) Modelling of both conductive and convective heatflow and thermal evolution in the evolving margin using Comsol Multiphysics and software currently being developed in Leeds. This will be used to predict variability in overlying organic-rich stratigraphy, is commonly the principal source in a number of deep water settings.

Use of rift basins analogues to reduce uncertainty in sub-salt rift architecture and evolution, Brazilian Margin.

Dr Douglas Paton & Dr Richard Collier
This PhD will utilise generic models of fault and basin evolution developed within the Basin Structure Group (BSG) to address uncertainty in constraining sub-salt basin architecture. These models will be tested through geometric comparisons, quantitative analysis of fault dimensions, and seismic forward modelling.