Geophysics is the study of the structure, properties and processes of the Earth using tools from physics and mathematics.

Topics include:

  • Physical structure, properties and dynamics of the whole Earth
  • Deformation and earthquakes
  • Rock magnetism and gravity
  • Heat-flow processes and volcanism
  • Physical oceanographic and atmospheric processes.

Geophysics at Victoria is grouped into two themes - Solid Earth Geophysics and Meteorology. Meteorology courses are taught in conjunction with staff from New Zealand MetService, which is based in Kelburn, only five minutes from campus.

Geophysics research interests include meteorology and forecasting methodologies, geomagnetism, magnetotellurics and palaeomagnetism, earthquake seismology and earthquake recurrence, fault mechanics and the state of stress in the Earth, active source seismology and tectonics, anisotropy or the crust and mantle and lithospheric structure.

Geophysics may be studied as part of the School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences, and the School of Chemical and Physical Sciences depending on the interests of the student.

Both Schools are well equipped with a wide range of field and laboratory equipment. This includes broad-band and multi-channel seismographs, gravity meters, a fully equipped palaeomagnetic laboratory with cryogenic magnetometer, equipment for geomagnetic and geoelectrical exploration, and laboratories for processing satellite imagery and reflection and refraction seismics.

Potential projects for Honours, MSc and PhD

Students interested in postgraduate study at Victoria should consult academic staff to select a research topic and supervisor for the project.

Click here to view the list of potential projects.

More information

For more information, please download the  postgraduate prospectus