PhD position in Ore Geology

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven


July 14, 2021


PhD position in Ore Geology

(ref. BAP-2021-454)

Last modification : Tuesday, June 8, 2021

The Ore geology and geofluids research unit focusses on the study of (1) Sediment-hosted deposits such as the stratiform Cu-Co deposits in the Central African Copperbelt, (2) Ta-Nb-Sn-Li pegmatite and Sn-W-Au quartz vein deposits, (3) Geometallurgical characterisation of tailings for extraction and recovery and (4) the relationship between basin development, tectonism and fluid migration. The unit currently consists of one post-doctoral researcher and seven PhD students. The unit is headed by professor Philippe Muchez.

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Title: Multiple mineralization and fluid phases in the Central African Copperbelt: implications for the age dating of the ore-forming processes

Various models have been proposed for the ore-forming processes of sediment- hosted Cu-Co deposits in the Central African Copperbelt, ranging from a magmatic to syn-sedimentary, diagenetic and orogenic origin or a multiphase origin. The isotopic systems Re-Os and U-Pb have been applied with success to date the mineralizing processes in the Copperbelt. However, a problem with this approach is the wide and sometimes geologically unrealistic ages obtained by Re-Os and U-Pb dating of the ore minerals. The large range in mineralization ages reported for the Cu-Co ore deposits in the Copperbelt can be due to a variety of geological processes. They could reflect: 1) multiple mineralization phases, as described for both the Congolese and Zambian part of the Copperbelt, 2) remobilization and recrystallization during subsequent fluid flow events, and 3) resetting of the isotopic system during later heating or fluid flow periods. The aim of this research is to: 1) characterize petrographically and geochemically the different mineralization, remobilization and recrystallization phases, 2) to propose objective criteria to distinguish these different phases and 3) to age date (U-Pb) the different carbonate phases associated with both barren as well as mineralized phases.


We are looking for a highly motivated and communicative geologist with a special interest and experience in ore geology and geochemistry. Experience with fluid inclusion petrography and microthermometry, Raman spectroscopy, laser ablation ICP-MS analysis of minerals or inclusions, and/or radiogenic isotope dating by LA-ICP-MS are an added value.


We offer a four year PhD position and an operating budget for laboratory work, including two research stays in Dublin under the supervision of professor David Chew. The initial contract is for one year and is automatically prolonged for three years after a positive evaluation as is foreseen by the doctoral school.


For more information please contact Prof. dr. Philippe Muchez, tel.: +32 16 32 75 84, mail:

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