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1981 …2022

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Personal profile

Research Biography

I grew up in Melbourne where at primary school I started collecting rocks and minerals and from this a life long interest in minerals developed.   I did a degree in Chemistry and Geology at Monash University and I designed my own honours project in chemistry looking at the crystal structure of some rare sulfide minerals. After doing geology at Monash, I decided that minerals were more interesting when considered a naturally occuring inorganic compounds rather than geological materials and my focus turned to Chemical Mineralogy.

I won a grant to do a Ph.D. in the Department of Phyiscal Chemistry at the University of Cambridge under the supervision of Prof Sir John M Thomas.  I was also a member of King's college, Cambridge. My thesis topic was a study of the crystal chemistry of caseuim and barium in mineral amd ceramics and application to the immboilization of high level nuclear waste.   I returned to Australia in 1983 and took up a position as mineralogist at the South Australian Museum in 1984.  This was largely a research position and this enabled me to undertake a wide range of mineralogical research on minerals, particularly sulfide minerals. At the same time I held affliated and adjunct positions in all three Universities in Adelaide.  I have been fortuante to have continous financial support from the Australian Research Council. While at the SA Museum I supervised or co-supervised over 20 Ph.D. students and 10 post doctorail research fellows.   In 2014 I joined Flinders University as Professor of Chemical Mineralogy.

Research Interests

Formation of minerals and materials by hydrothermal methods.


List of Australian Category 1 grants and International Competitive grants and income since 2003:

  • ARC Discovery grant – Jan 03 - $235K (Sole CI)

Nickel iron sulphide mineralogy; the link between mineral transformations & microstructure & magnet properties

  •  ARC Discovery grant – Jan 03 - $250K (third CI)

The effects of local strain on the crystal chemistry of mineral solid solutions

  • ARC linkage LP0669007 Jun 2006 ARC funds $412K Industry $180K

Bacterial mechanisms of gold mobilisation and precipitation. Funding period 2007-2009

  • ARC Discovery DP077229 ARC funds $305K

Mineral replacement reactions. Funding period 2007-2009

  • ARC Discovery DP 0880884 ARC funds $388K

The geochemistry of tellurium. Funding period 2008-2010

  • ARC Linkage LP0882597 ARC funds $150K Industry funds $90K

Chemical fingerprinting of Ochres. Funding period 2008-2010

  • ARC Discovery DP1095069 ARC Funds $590K

Experimental studies on hydrothermal reaction processes at the molecular level: the role of mineral replacement reactions in ore formation Funding period 20010-2013

  • ARC Discovery DP140102765 ARC Funds $295K

IOCG in a Test Tube: Critical Experiments for Understanding Fe-Cu-U-REE in hydrothermal fluids and during fluid-rock interaction Funding Period 2014-2016.

  • ARC Discovery DP170101893 ARC Funds $465K

Wet and Stressed -Nature’s mechanism for leaching and remobilizing metals. Funding period 2017-2019

  • ARC Linkage LP 160101497 ARC Funds $485K plus $390K Industry funds.

Reverse engineering Nature: metal extraction through mineral replacement
Funding Period 2018-2021

  • ARC Research Hub for Australian Copper-Uranium.HI130200033

Total Funding $7,184K Flinders Node funding $822K
Funding period 2015-2020

  • NERA Assessing Radionuclides and Developing Frameworks for South Australia’s Environment Surrounding Uranium Mining Sites. Funding $948,000 funding period 2016-2020
  • ARC Linkage – LP0454976 Jan 04 - $435K (ARC) plus $149K(industry) (PI)

Mobility of metals in hydrothermal solutions: critical experiments and numerical modelling tools to improve exploration success and ore processing. Funding period 2005 to 2007

  • ARC Linkage LP100200102 ARC Funding $430K plus $330 K industry

Development of Biosensors and bioindicators for gold exploration and processing in Australia Funding period 2011-2013

  • ARC Linkage LP100200533 ARC Funding $300K

Collection of Coarse, Composite Particles by Bubbles in Flotation

  • ARC LIEF – Jan 03 -$896K

XPS and an X-ray diffraction camera (Image Plate Guinier Camera)

  • ARC LIEF LE100100069 ARC Funds $640K

A High Resolution Environmental Scanning Electron Microscope (HRESEM) for South Australia Prof Mark Tester, A/Prof Heike Ebendorff-Heidepriem, Prof Hans Griesser, Prof David Lewis, Prof Allan Pring

  • ARC LIEF LE110100223 ARC funding $1 million

In-situ electron microscopy (Monash) Prof Joanne Etheridge, Prof Barrington Muddle, Prof Dougal McCulloch, Prof Paul Mulvaney, Prof Peter Hodgson, Prof Allan Pring, Prof Alan Bond, Prof Dan Li, Prof Kiyonori Suzuki, Prof Kourosh Kalantar-zadeh

  • ARC LIEF LE120100012 ARC Funding $230K

Enhanced Powder X-ray Diffraction Capabilities for SA A/Prof Christopher Sumby, Prof Andrea Gerson, Dr Christian Doonan, Prof Allan Pring, Prof Amanda Ellis, A/Prof Heike Ebendorff-Heidepriem, Prof Linda Zou, A/Prof Claire Lenehan, Prof David Chittleborough, Prof Peter Majewski

  • ARC LIEF LE130100038 ARC Funding $450K

Scanning Auger Microscopy for Elemental Imaging and Characterisation of Surfaces and Interfaces A/Prof Jamie Quinton, Prof Mark Biggs, Prof William Skinner, Prof Joseph Shapter, A/Prof David Beattie, A/Prof Gunther Andersson, Prof Allan Pring, Dr Sarah Harmer-Bassell, A/Prof Claire Lenehan, Prof Shizhang Qiao

  • ARC LIEF LE140100040 ARC Funding $1.375 million

A High Resolution TEM Capbility for Nano-Science in South Australia Prof Allan Pring, Prof Joseph Shapter, Prof Shizhang Qiao, Prof Colin Raston, Prof David Lewis, Prof Martin Kennedy, Prof Thomas Nann, Prof Amanda Ellis, A/Prof Nigel Cook, A/Prof Heike Ebendorff-Heidepriem


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