My main research interest is in structural geology and tectonics with a focus on field geology, structural controls on mineralized systems and the tectonic evolution of Proterozoic and Archean terranes. Current areas of interest are: the Archean Tanzania Craton, with research related to gold mineralization, tectonic evolution and crustal growth; the Proterozoic Mt Isa region of northern Queensland, with research related to copper, SEDEX and IOCG mineralization as well as the structural, metamorphic and tectonic evolution of the region.

I use a multidisciplinary approach in my research frequently dwelling into one or more of the following disciplines: structural and geological mapping, metamorphic petrology, geochronology (zircon, monazite and titanite), igneous geochemistry, isotopes (Lu-Hf and Sm-Nd) and numerical modelling. Past research involved geological work in the Carpathian orogenic system, the NE Appalachians, the Nepal Himalayas and the Kanmantoo Group in South Australia.

I maintain an active collaboration with the mining industry with students working on a range of industry sponsored projects from Honours to PhD level.


  • EA2300: Introductory Structural and Metamorphic Geology (Level 2; TSV)
  • EA2510: Earth Resources, Exploration and Environment (Level 2; TSV)
  • EA3200: Advanced Structural and Metamorphic Geology (Level 3; TSV)
  • EA3510: Geological Mapping (Level 3; TSV)
  • EA3511: Field Techniques in Geology (Level 3; TSV)
  • EA5027: Advanced Field Training (Level 5; TSV)
  • EA5028: Advanced Techniques in Mining and Exploration Geology (Level 5; TSV)
  • EA5042: Advanced Structural and Metamorphic Geology (Level 5; TSV)
  • EA5044: Geological Mapping (Level 5; TSV)
  • EA5045: Field Techniques in Geology (Level 5; TSV)
  • SC1101: Science: Nature, Knowledge and Understanding (Level 1; TSV)
  • structural geology and tectonics - thermodinamic modelling and metamorphism - tectonic styles through geological time - Archean deformation and geology - structural controls on mineralization - gold deposits - mineral exploration - deformation partitioning and porphyroblasts - monazite and zircon geochronology
  • 2015 to present - Lecturer, James Cook University (Townsville)
  • 2009 to 2014 - Postdoctoral Research Fellow, James Cook University (Townsville)
  • 2006 to 2009 - PhD student, James Cook University (Townsville)
Research Disciplines
Socio-Economic Objectives

These are the most recent publications associated with this author. To see a detailed profile of all publications stored at JCU, visit ResearchOnline@JCU. Hover over Altmetrics badges to see social impact.

Journal Articles

ResearchOnline@JCU stores 16+ research outputs authored by Dr Ioan Sanislav from 2006 onwards.

Current Funding

Current and recent Research Funding to JCU is shown by funding source and project.

Australian Synchrotron - Beamline Proposal

X-ray fluorescence microscopy of Archean macro and microfossils

Indicative Funding
The 2700 Ma metasediments from the Archean Tanzania Craton contain centimeter size ?concretionary? structures that resemble Phanerozoic trace fossils and unusually large and complexly shaped microfossils. Thin section studies and EPMA elemental mapping revealed that the grain size and composition of the ?concretions? are very different from the surrounding matrix. They contain a complex internal structure, which is inconsistent with an inorganic origin suggesting the existence of complex life forms 2700 Ma ago. Herein we ask for beam-time to collect detailed high resolution and high sensitivity compositional data for the macrofossils and the microfossils.
Ioan Sanislav and Paul Dirks in collaboration with Rosalie Hocking (College of Science & Engineering and Swinburne University of Technology)
Archaean fossils; imaging; Origin of life; x-ray fluorescence microscopy

Anglogold Ashanti Geita Gold Mine Ltd - Contract Research

Geological Services, Geita Gold Mine

Indicative Funding
$1,818,729 over 6 years
The aim of the project is the development of new gold reserves from satellite pits and from the Kukuluma terrain, by building an integrated geological model for the entire tenement area. The area will be mapped, and a regional geological interpretation will be made as a basis for building a genetic model that will enable gold mineralization to be targeted, through ranking existing targets and generating new ones. A training strategy to improve the mine geology team will be implemented.
Paul Dirks, Tom Blenkinsop, Ioan Sanislav and Agnes Samper (College of Science & Engineering)
Gold; Exploration; Tanzania; Targeting; Training; Geita Mine

Advisory Accreditation: I can be on your Advisory Panel as a Primary or Secondary Advisor.

These Higher Degree Research projects are either current or by students who have completed their studies within the past 5 years at JCU. Linked titles show theses available within ResearchOnline@JCU.

  • Fluids in the lower crust: storage and mobilization (PhD , Secondary Advisor)
  • Geochemical characterisation of gold mineralisation in Geita Hill (Geita Greenstone Belt, Tanzania) (PhD , Primary Advisor)

The map shows research collaborations by institution from the past 7 years.
Note: Map points are indicative of the countries or states that institutions are associated with.

  • 5+ collaborations
  • 4 collaborations
  • 3 collaborations
  • 2 collaborations
  • 1 collaboration
  • Indicates the Tropics (Torrid Zone)

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