Mission Statement

The LODE group aims to:

  • Undertake research of the highest international quality into the mineralogy and geochemistry of ore deposits in order to improve discovery success and provide solutions to reduce both the environmental impact and energy use of resource extraction
  • Identify, attract and develop students of the highest calibre, providing a pipeline of talent and future leaders for government, academia and the international minerals industry
  • Foster a wider awareness and understanding of resource supply and development issues beyond the scientific community

LODE Research Group - Cornwall Field Trip 2017
Members of the LODE Research Group visit Cornwall on their annual field trip

Breaking news....

  • Congratulations to PhD students Emily Brugge and Chetan Nathwani who made it a clean sweep for LODE at the recent Mineral Deposits Studies Group Annual Winter Meeting at the Natural History Museum, winning the Anglo American student poster prize and Rio Tinto student talk prize respectively.

  • Copper Basins Exploration Science (CuBES) is a major new research project funded by NERC via a Highlight Topic award. This £2.5M, 3-year project is focusing on the basin-scale processes that lead to the formation of giant sediment-hosted Cu (Co-V) deposits. LODE/NHM is one of the main academic partners in the project which kicks off in January 2020.

  • LODE Director Jamie Wilkinson has been promoted to Professor of Geology at Imperial College

  • A new PhD project working on the controls of the distribution and development of pyrophyllite in high sulphidation epithermal deposits has been fully-funded by Barrick Gold Corp. This expands the range of research being done in the LODE group on alteration mineral chemistry and the development of tools for mineral exploration. The project will start in the summer of 2019.

  • A new PhD project working on titanite chemistry has been funded by NERC via a competitive Industrial CASE PhD application with Rio Tinto. This project adds to the portfolio of research in the group investigating conditions conducive to the formation of economic porphyry ore deposits. The project will start in September/October 2018.

2014 Institution of Engineering and Technology innovation award

An international team, involving researchers from the LODE group won a global innovation award from the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) for the development of laser ablation analysis for the enhanced discovery of buried mineral resources. The method, already being used by mineral exploration companies, uses the LODE laboratory and facilities at CODES, University of Tasmania, to analyse mineral samples and make predictions about the likely occurrence, style and location of mineral resources.

William Webb, IET President said: “The IET Innovation Awards celebrate the best in global innovation, highlighting the rapid and exciting pace of development in today’s engineering and technology industry. Congratulations to this international team for their win. They were selected from a highly impressive set of global innovations as one of the most forward thinking, pioneering innovations in the field". 



lodelab2 lodelab1The LODE laser lab, located in the Imaging and Analysis Centre (IAC) at the Natural History Museum is a state-of-the-art laser ablation ICP-MS facility, generously funded by Anglo American, Rio Tinto and Quantum Pacific Exploration. It houses an Agilent 7700x quadrupole ICP-MS coupled to an ESI (New Wave Research) NWR193 excimer laser with infinitely-variable aperture and improved out-of-beam optical energy attenuator. Large and small format ablation cells are available. The instrument is being used to develop improved protocols for the analysis of trace elements in minerals and in a range of exploration and mining-related research projects. The laboratory also hosts a brand new ESI New Wave 213 nm solid state laser primarily for the analysis of the chemistry of single fluid inclusions and a second Agilent 7500 quadrupole ICP-MS for fluid inclusion and non-silicate mineral analysis.

Contact Us

For questions and enquiries please contact j.wilkinson@nhm.ac.uk


LODE has a number of important international collaborators in its research programme: