Geology and Geophysics

Planetary mass, fluid, and chemical fluxes (MASS)

Planetary systems are subject to a constant redistribution and exchange of matter internally and with their surroundings. Our research covers the causes and effects of processes in terms of mass (e.g., erosion, impacts), high-T fluids, and magmas (e.g., volcanic systems, ore formation, metamorphism), and Earth chemical fluxes in general, from subduction zones to groundwater and atmosphere. 

Identifying fingerprints of geological processes (PROCESS)

The chemical fingerprinting of the processes that form and modify solid Earth solid allows tracing the spatial and temporal evolution of the mantle and crust from μm-scale to 1000’s of kilometres and seconds to millions of years, respectively. Our research focusses on the processes that form Precambrian mantle and crustal lithologies and a comparison with the processes that occur along recent active plate boundaries. 

Timescales of a dynamic planet (TIME)

Dynamic processes in the Earth span timescales from earthquakes that occur in seconds to the assembly and breakup of supercontinents over hundreds of millions of years. Our research aims to link observations and models spanning these timescales to better understand Earth's evolution and potential societal hazards in the future. 

Differentiation of Earth and life in deep time (LIFE)

From the early accreted blob of planetary material, Earth has gone through extensive differentiation to the complex spherical structure it has today. As Early life evolved to even more complex life forms, it also fundamentally changed the chemical differentiation of the Earth. We study the coevolution of the inorganic and organic worlds in deep time to shed light on the origins and evolution of life and our life-sustaining planet. 

Planetary defence against internal and external threats (PLANETDEF)

Planetary defence identifies, evaluates, and mitigates threats represented by geological or planetary processes to our civilization. Internal threats include land stability, seismicity, volcanic activity, or climate change. External processes include impacts of asteroids or comets. 

Formation, exploration, and responsible use of natural resources (RESOURCE)

Our research covers the formation, responsible exploration and use of natural Earth resources including metal and mineral deposits, hydrocarbons and water from a geochemical, geophysical and modelling perspective in a world of increasing demand. 

Assessing and mitigating environmental impacts of geological and anthropogenic processes  (IMPACT)

The impact of geological processes and humans on the environment are manifold and complex. Our research focusses on changes in environmental conditions on geological and human timescales and centres around those processes involving the upper lithosphere/hydrosphere/atmosphere interfaces.

The Helsinki geophysical, environmental and mineralogical laboratories (Hellabs) of the Department of Geology and Geophysics provide analytical services and access to a wide range of physical and chemical analytical techniques centred around solid Earth and environmental materials. The laboratories cover a wide range of techniques applicable to inorganic, organic, solid and liquid materials. 


The research of petrology and geochemistry encompasses a wide range of topics in the fields of petrology, mineralogy, geochemistry and ore-geology. We use state-of-the-art analytical and modelling methods aimed at enhancing our understanding of the processes that form and modify the lithosphere. Our research targets diverse tectonic settings: from stable cratons to active subaerial and submarine igneous systems.