Anna Brookfield

Academic Profile

Earth processes had always fascinated me, so I studied for an undergraduate degree in geology at the University of Edinburgh. I loved fieldwork and learning about things as varied as fossils, faults and magma chambers, and I graduated with a first class degree in 2010.

After this, I went to work as a geoscientist in an oil and gas consultancy. Here I pieced together different bits of geological information, such as wireline logs, cross-sections and geochemical data, to determine sites of likely hydrocarbon deposition and reservoir quality rocks.

In 2017 I joined the Geophysical Hazards MSc at UCL, where I learned about the physical processes underpinning natural hazards, as well as the importance of hazard communication. For my dissertation, I investigated the seismic hazard to mine tailings dams in central Chile. I really enjoyed the applied nature of this research and received a distinction for this course.

Current Research

My PhD focuses on the build-up of pressure within magma reservoirs prior to eruption. I’m using a technique called electron backscatter diffraction to measure deformation within crystals erupted from volcanoes. I want to investigate whether crystal deformation can be used as a marker to tell us more about levels of magmatic overpressure across different volcanic systems. This has implications for volcanic hazards and satellite monitoring of volcanoes.

In addition to volcanic hazards I am also interested in researching tsunamis, landslides and earthquakes, and the connections between these events. Although I am primarily a physical science researcher, I am also interested in hazard communication and the logistics of safely evacuating at risk populations.


Publications to follow

Contact information