I trained as a Chemist at the University of Otago, Monash University and the University of Adelaide, obtaining a PhD in synthetic organometallic chemistry  in 1989. Following postdoctoral fellowships in France at the Institut  Francais du Petrole, Paris and the Laboratoire de Chimie Quantique/CNRS, Strasbourg I returned to New Zealand to run the NMR Facility at Auckland University. From there I headed back to Australia, working for a short while with a synthetic organic chemistry group at Central Queensland University.

I  commenced as an academic in the Discipline of Chemistry at James Cook University (Cairns campus) in July 1996 and was the first member of the Faculty of Medicine, Health and Molecular Science on Campus.

My research interests are broadly in environmental science.  I have worked in the Rainforest CRC, the MTSRF program and was the Australian SuperSites Network lead in TERN from 2008 - 2018.  My specific focus in the rainforest is on atmospheric fluxes.  In addition I work on dental materials and peptide toxins.

  • CH1010: Biological Chemistry for Dentistry (Level 1; CNS)
  • CH1011: Chemistry for the Natural Sciences (Level 1; CNS & TSV)
  • CH1020: Preparatory Chemistry (Level 1; CNS)
  • CH2010: Biological Chemistry (Level 2; CNS)
  • CH3041: Environmental Chemistry (Level 3; CNS & TSV)
  • CH5041: Environmental Chemistry (Level 5; CNS & TSV)
  • DS1101: Dental Science Part 1 of 2 (Level 1; CNS)
  • DS1102: Dental Science Part 2 of 2 (Level 1; CNS)
  • PH2222: Sensors and Sensing for Scientists (Level 2; CNS)
  • atmospheric fluxes
  • carbon cycling in tropical rainforests
  • dental materials
  • peptide toxins
  • organometallic clusters
  • 1996 to 2015 - Associate Professor, James Cook University (Cairns)
  • 1995 to 1996 - Research Associate, Central Queensland University (Rockhampton)
  • 1991 to 1995 - Director NMR Facility, Auckland University (Auckland, New Zealand)
  • 1990 to 1991 - Postdoctoral Fellow, Laboratoire de Chimie Quantique (Strasbourg, France)
  • 1989 to 1990 - Postdoctoral Fellow, Institut Francais du Petrole (Paris, France)

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 23+ research outputs authored by A/Prof Michael Liddell from 2004 onwards.

Current Funding

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

Wet Tropics Management Authority - Student Research Grant Scheme

Evaluating drought response in tropical rainforests across the Wet Tropics using dynamic vegetation models

Indicative Funding
Future climate scenarios indicate a considerable threat to tropical rainforests, but the implications of this threat are yet to be fully understood. Here, we develop and parameterize two individual-based ecophysiology process models, MAESPA and TFSv.2SP, using site specific trait, growth and meteorological data. These models will be used to simulate Net Primary Productivity as a function of water-use, and light availability to evaluate the rainforest response to prevailing climate and to soil moisture deficit. MAESPA and TFSv.2SP will be compared on their ability to simulate measured response to climate for two TERN SuperSites at the Daintree Rainforest and Robson Creek. The models will be parameterized with extant data for dominant plant species at each site, they will then be driven by the measured climate over the last 15 years and validated using time series sap flow data, flux data, and/or stand level productivity data. Following this model validation exercise, site specific climate predictions for the next 50 years will be acquired from CSIRO and UNSW to run the models in a predictive mode to estimate potential future trajectories for these two sites
James Milner, Michael Liddell, Lucas Cernusak and Patrick Meir (College of Science & Engineering and Australian National University)
Rainforest; drought experiment; Wet Tropics; Vegetation

Qld Department of Employment, Economic Development & Innovation - TERN EIF scheme

TERN Australia Supersite Network

Indicative Funding
$4,097,140 over 8 years
The Australian Supersite Network will involve the establishment of a nationally consistent network of multidisciplinary and intensive ecosystem observatories "Supersites" to provide a comprehensive set of ecosystem measurements (vegetation dynamics/stocks, biodiversity, micrometeorology (climate, radiation, C and H2O fluxes), hydrology and biogeochemistry to serve the ecosystem dynamics, earth system science and modelling communities and ultimately provide information on how ecosystems will respond to future environmental change.
Michael Liddell in collaboration with Peter Grace, Suzanne Prober, Tim Wardlaw and Wayne Meyer (College of Science & Engineering, Queensland University of Technology, Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation, Forestry Tasmania and University of Adelaide)
Supersite; Semi-arid woodland; Rainforest; temperate broadleaf forest; Peri-urgan

Department of Industry and Science - National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS)

Ozflux FNQ tropical rainforest site

Indicative Funding
$476,988 over 10 years (administered by University of Queensland)
As part of the Australian National Flux Network (Ozflux) the FNQ tropical rainforest site will be required to provide half-hourly average time series of a range of data streams including fluxes of carbon, water and energy. The data will be sent to a central console in Canberra where it will be quality assessed and archived. The processed data will be used by the ACEAS Ecological Monitoring and Synthesis centre in Brisbane after the appropriate data access conditions have been met and post-publication by the original authors.
Michael Liddell (College of Science & Engineering)
Fluxes; Rainforest; Ozflux

Powerlink Queensland - Contract Research

Abrasive Blasting - Are There Any Environmental Concerns

Indicative Funding
$74,284 over 2 years
The re-surfacing and re-use of existing high voltage towers instead of removing and replacing with new structures has the potential to alter the way that power transmission infrastructure is used in the long term in Queensland. This project will look at using abrasive blasting in the high value and sensitive landscape of the rainforests of the Wet Tropics and will develop the science narrative around how the process interacts with the local environment.
Michael Liddell, Tobin Northfield, Lucas Cernusak, Anthony Morrison, Simon Berryman and Nicole Lashmar (College of Science & Engineering, Macquarie University and Powerlink Queensland)
Invertebrate Physiology; Ecophysiology; Aerosols

CSIRO - Contract Research

Spatial predictions of changes in forest biomass carbon (TLJV Postdoctoral project)

Indicative Funding
$154,000 over 2 years
This project will enable the appointment of a Postdoctoral Fellow who will work with JCU and CSIRO researchers to better link ground-based measures of biomass with remote sensing tools. This will provide spatial predictions of changes in biomass carbon with known certainty. Specific tasks for the first year of the project will include three stages of work, each focusing on TERN Supersites. The Supersites involved are FNQ Rainforest Robson Creek (Qld), Warra Tall Eucalypt (TAS and Calperum Malee (SA).
Michael Liddell, Karen Joyce, A Held, K Paul and S Roxburgh (College of Science & Engineering and Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation)
Biomass; SuperSite; Lidar; landstat

Advisory Accreditation: I can be on your Advisory Panel as a 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.

  • The Impacts of Soil Physicochemicol Properties on Suppression of Fusorium wilt of Bananas in North Queensland, Australia. (PhD , Secondary Advisor)
  • Climate Change Effects on Tropical Trees: Phenology, Eco-Physiology and Stable Isotopes of Amazon Forest Species under Increasing CO2 (PhD , Secondary 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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