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Prof Ben Williamson


I am a mineralogist and geochemist with 30 years’ experience in granite genesis, ore deposits geology and environmental impacts of mining-related activities. My mineral deposits research has focussed on the role of colloids in high temperature hydrothermal fluids, the source and partitioning of tin and boron in granite magmas, and the potential of tourmaline and plagioclase as exploration tools for granite-related tin and porphyry copper deposits, respectively. I have 3 PhD students currently working on porphyry deposit formation, one studying porphyry-breccia systems at El Teniente, Chile, another on classic porphyry deposits in the Yerington District of Nevada, and a third on porphyry-skarn deposits in the Daye District, China. 

My environmental research has involved determining the nature, toxicity and dispersion of copper smelter emissions, the development of new low cost and discrete biomonitoring methodologies for environmental forensics, characterisation and potential toxicity of the silica polymorph cristobalite in ash from the Soufrière Hills volcano, Montserrat, ash and smokes from the burning of sugarcane waste and reducing occupational exposure to coal dust.