Stacy Phillips

The Open University


When did crustal melting form the soft centre at the heart of the Himalaya?


Tom Argles, Nigel Harris, Clare Warren (OU) Nick Roberts (NIGL)

PhD Summary

My project will be looking at early deformed granites in the Himalaya. They occur in a number of places across the mountain chain but they are not as abundant or as large as other younger granite bodies, and they are often heavily deformed, meaning they have been under-represented in the literature. These older granites are very important in figuring out the details of how the Himalayas formed, providing information on the pressure and temperature conditions under which they melted and formed, constraining the timing of the continental collision, and helping to test tectonic models of how the collision mechanically happened. My project will involve fieldwork in Spring 2017 to collect samples in and determine field relationships, and then lots of lab work and geochemical analyses to answer my research questions.

What inspires you?

I’ve always been interested in nature, but the first “wow” moment that I had in geology was a college fieldtrip to Ingleton Falls in Yorkshire. That really opened my eyes to the vastness of geological time and the dynamic processes that have shaped the earth.

Previous Activity

I studied for my BSc. in Geoscience at the University of St Andrews. I then earned my MSc. in Geology at Memorial University of Newfoundland in Canada, where I was working on a suite of granites in the Mojave Desert in California. I then moved back home to the North West of England and worked as a Data Analyst in Wetstock Management, monitoring underground petrol tanks in SE Asia for leaks. And now I’ve found myself at the Open University!

Why did you choose Docotoral Research?

I’ve always enjoyed the scientific process, coming up with an idea, figuring out how to test it and then investigating it, so research has always seemed a natural path for me. My Master’s experience gave me a great introduction to research and I just wanted to continue in the same vein.

Why did you choose a CENTA Studentship?

The CENTA training was a big pull for me to this project. The amount of training combined with the fact it is with a group of students from across different institutions and different disciplines I think makes for an excellent grounding in collaborative research skills.

What are your future plans

I think that the skills I develop during my PhD, through CENTA, the OU and my collaboration with NIGL, will give me an excellent basis upon which to continue in Earth Science research. Alternatively I will be able to transfer these skills and apply them to jobs in related fields