Ethan Petrou

Academic Profile


MSci in Earth Sciences – University College London – 1st Class Honours
Thesis title: Determining the Provenance of Angolan Coastal Sands

Exchange year abroad – The University of Texas at Austin – GPA : 3.96 / 4.0

Professional Experience

2018: Geotechnical Engineer with MG3 Ltd

2016-2017: Research Engineer at the Institute for Geophysics

2016: Laboratory engineer at the Berkeley Geochronology center

I have completed offshore expeditions in the Gulf of Mexico and offshore Africa while continuing onshore research in Lagos, Louisiana, Texas and the UK.

Key Awards

2016: Dean’s List – Awarded to UCL students graduating in the top 5% of all the Mathematical and Physical Sciences graduates

2015: University Honours – Awarded both semesters for academic excellence

2014: Hollingworth Award – 2nd year geologist who obtained highest results (1/53)

2013: EdithGoodyear Award – 1st year geologist who produced best coursework

Current Research

I am interested in the relationship between isotopic geochemistry and fluid flow migration with an emphasis of trace metal analysis. As a secondary goal I am to investigate into methane hydrate exploration and what can be gleaned from their expression in seismic data.

The primary aim of my DPhil project is to determine the impact of natural fluid migration of methane gas on the geochemistry of the top surface sediment on continental slope facies. The benefit of this research is that a contextual analysis for future geochemical sampling will be established. This will be achieved by trying to develop whether any relationship between lateral enrichments of trace metals and the presence of conditions supporting methane gas generation can be established.

I will initially use seismic interpretation software to characterise the subsurface and potential fluid flow migration pathways. This, coupled with initial core pore-water experiments will help quantify the greater geochemical implication for samples from the study area. From here I will investigate into trace metal enrichment of sediments on continteal slopes, in particular Barium. Trace metal enrichments in sedimentary deposits are of key interest because they are controlled by the same processes that also control organic matter preservation and production.


Vermeesch, P., Rittner, M., Petrou, E., Omma, J., Mattinson, C. & Garzanti, E., 2017, High throughput petrochronology and sedimentary provenance analysis by automated phase mapping and LAICPMS, Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems (doi: 10.1002/2017GC007109

Publicity – Jackson School of Geoscience News

October 2017:// Fueling the Future 

May 2017:// Bleeding the Pressure 

May 2017:// Bust to Boom

Linkedin :// Ethan Petrou

Contact information