Professor Martin Hand

Head of Department
Professor Martin Hand
  Org Unit Earth Sciences
  Telephone +61 8 8313 5324
  Location Floor/Room G 09 ,  Mawson Laboratories ,   North Terrace

After completing an Honours degrees at the University of Newcastle, I undertook a PhD at Melbourne University, completing in 1995. My PhD work focused on the structural and metamorphic evolution of Proterozoic terrains in Antarctica and central Australia. 

Following my PhD I was awarded an Australian Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship (APD) at the University of Adelaide where I continued to investigate the thermal evolution of the continental crust. I was then awarded a Australian Research Council Research Fellowship (ARF). The emphasis of this research involved investigating the origin of high temperature processes in the crust, and the role that heat producing elements such as uranium and thorium play in controlling the geological record of the Australian continent.

After being appointed as a lecturer at the University of Adelaide in 2000, we formed the Continental Evolution Research Group, an informal grouping of between of around 15 researchers focussed on tectonic processes.  In recent years CERG was merged into the Centre for Tectonics, Resources and Exploration

More recently I've integrated my research interests with the emerging geothermal energy industry in Australia, where I am the Director of the South Australian Centre for Geothermal Energy Research (see  SACGER is funded from the State Government of South Australia, ARENA and ARC, and seeks to assist the geothermal energy sector in bringing projects to demonstration.The focus of SACGER is subsurface characterisation, and the centre has around 30 staff and research students that contribute to a program that integrates geophysical methods with fluid-rock processes and quantative understanding of reservoir quality and performance.

1995 PhD Geology University of Melbourne.

I usually teach Geoscience subjects from level 1 to level III, with a focus on metamorphic geology, tectonics and field work.

Field Geoscience III
This course provides a comprehensive introduction to independent geological mapping and the construction of geological maps. You will develop the skills required to interpret and solve geological relationships at a variety of scales, and synthesise them into four-dimensional models that describe the geological evolution of terrains. These skills include hand specimen and outcrop geology, mapping and stratigraphic analysis at a range of scales, aerial photo interpretation, remote sensing and the integration of geophysical datasets into geological mapping and interpretation. Thus, the course will draw upon the principals of structural geology and combine them with an understanding of sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rock systems. Fieldwork will focus on the Precambrian terrains of southern and central Australia, however the acquired skills will be transferable into any aged geological system.

Igneous and Metamorphic Geology III
This course will introduce the methods and techniques appropriate to the study of igneous and metamorphic processes. We will introduce the principles of heat flow and its application to understanding thermal gradients in the lithosphere and explore techniques used to understand metamorphic systems. The course will also examine the origin and evolution of silicate melts and their role in the differentiation of the Earth.


I like working on tectonic problems using whatever tools are required to make progress. Together with collegues within the South Australian Centre for Geothermal Energy Research and the Centre for Tectonics, Resources and Exploration I am committed to fundamental and applied research in tectonics and geoenergy using a broad based approach that integrates petrological and isotopic tools with geophysics and structural mapping.

Our work has been supported by a number of research grants including:

Hand et al (2004-2008 ARC linkage) - Gawler Craton ($1.8M),

Hand et al (2005-2008 ARC linkage) - Musgrave Province ($1.2M),

Hand (2005-2007 ARC Discovery) - Intracratonic orogeny ($300K),

Collins, Hand, Barovich, Heinson (2007-2009 ARC Discovery) Ancient eclogites ($120K),

Collins, Hand, Clark, et al (2006-2009 ASAC) - Enigmatic Orogeny ($625K).

Kelsey et al 2010-2012 ARC linkage) - Orogeny and reworking in the West Musgrave Province ($300K),

South Australian Centre for Geothermal Energy Research - South Australian Government ($2M),

Brugger, Hand et al (2011, ARC LIEF). High performance electron microprobe analyser ($700K),

Hand et al (2011-2013 - Premiers Science Research Fund), Trace element microanalytical imaging facilities for South Australia ($540K),

Collins, Hand, Condie 2010-2012 ARC Discovery) Crustal growth and supercontinent formation ($240K).

Ranjith, Airey, Sandiford, Hand, et al (ARC LIEF) Hydro-thermo-mechanical testing chamber for sustainable deep geological resources ($940K).

Durrant-Whyte; Williamson, Tiberi, Ramos, Hand, et al (ARENA), Data fusion for geothermal exploration ($1.9M).

Collins, Belousova, Murphy, Hand, (ARC Discovery) Supercells and the supercontinent cycle ($250K).

Hand et al 2012-2014 (Aust Ant Science) The Precambrian Australian-Antarctic continent ($750K).

Hand et al 2012-2014 (ARENA), Reservoir quality in sedimentary geothermal systems ($1.25M).

Hand et al 2012 (AGOS), Determining resouirce potential in South Australian Sedimentary basins ($360K).

Hand et al 2013 (ARC LIEF) High sensitivity and precision mass spectrometry for tracing Australia's ancient evolution and securing our future groundwater resources ($360K)

Kennedy, Hand, Vincent, Hamilton, Roberts, Malavazos, Dwyer Quantifying the flux of fugitive greenhouse gasses associated with coal seam gas and calibrating it to natural baseline and anthropogenic sources ($460K)



Selected 2009-2014


A flavour of what I have been doing for the last couple of years (mostly with PhD students) can be seen from the manuscripts below.

Abul Khair, H., Cooke, D., Hand, M. Seismic mapping and geomechanical analyses of faults within deep hot granites, a workflow for enhanced geothermal system projects(2015) Geothermics, 53, pp. 46-56.

Smits, R.G., Collins, W.J., Hand, M., Dutch, R., Payne, J. A Proterozoic Wilson cycle identified by Hf isotopes in central Australia: Implications for the assembly of Proterozoic Australia and Rodinia(2014) Geology, 42 (3), pp. 231-234.

Raimondo, T., Hand, M., Collins, W.J. Compressional intracontinental orogens: Ancient and modern perspectives(2014) Earth-Science Reviews, 130, pp. 128-153.

Natarajan, N., Xu, C., Dowd, P.A., Hand, M. Numerical modelling of thermal transport and quartz precipitation/ dissolution in a coupled fracture-skin-matrix system (2014) International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 78, pp. 302-310.

Taylor, R.J.M., Clark, C., Fitzsimons, I.C.W., Santosh, M., Hand, M., Evans, N., McDonald, B. Post-peak, fluid-mediated modification of granulite facies zircon and monazite in the Trivandrum Block, southern India (2014) Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, 168 (2), pp. 1-17.

Morrissey, L.J., Hand, M., Raimondo, T., Kelsey, D.E. Long-lived high-T, low-P granulite facies metamorphism in the Arunta region, central Australia (2014) Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 32 (1), pp. 25-47.

Walsh, A.K., Kelsey, D.E., Kirkland, C.L., Hand, M., Smithies, R.H., Clark, C., Howard, H.M. P-T-t evolution of a large, long-lived, ultrahigh-temperature Grenvillian belt in central Australia(2013) Gondwana Research, in Press.

Abul Khair, H., Cooke, D., Hand, M. The effect of present day in situ stresses and paleo-stresses on locating sweet spots in unconventional reservoirs, a case study from Moomba-Big Lake fields, Cooper Basin, South Australia(2013) Journal of Petroleum Exploration and Production Technology, 3 (4), pp. 207-221.

Morrissey, L.J., Hand, M., Wade, B.P., Szpunar, M. Early Mesoproterozoic metamorphism in the Barossa Complex, South Australia: links with the eastern margin of Proterozoic Australia (2013) Australian Journal of Earth Sciences, 60 (8), pp. 769-795.

Anderson, J.R., Kelsey, D.E., Hand, M., Collins, W.J. Conductively driven, high-thermal gradient metamorphism in the Anmatjira Range, Arunta region, central Australia(2013) Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 31 (9), pp. 1003-1026.

Walsh, A.K., Raimondo, T., Kelsey, D.E., Hand, M., Pfitzner, H.L., Clark, C. Duration of high-pressure metamorphism and cooling during the intraplate Petermann Orogeny (2013) Gondwana Research, 24 (3-4), pp. 969-983.

Maidment, D.W., Hand, M., Williams, I.S. High grade metamorphism of sedimentary rocks during Palaeozoic rift basin formation in central Australia (2013) Gondwana Research, 24 (3-4), pp. 865-885.

Raimondo, T., Clark, C., Hand, M., Cliff, J., Anczkiewicz, R. A simple mechanism for mid-crustal shear zones to record surface-derived fluid signatures(2013) Geology, 41 (6), pp. 711-714.

Cutts, K.A., Kelsey, D.E., Hand, M. Evidence for late Paleoproterozoic (ca 1690-1665Ma) high- to ultrahigh-temperature metamorphism in southern Australia: Implications for Proterozoic supercontinent models(2013) Gondwana Research, 23 (2), pp. 617-640.

Anderson, J.R., Payne, J.L., Kelsey, D.E., Hand, M., Collins, A.S., Santosh, M. High-pressure granulites at the dawn of the Proterozoic (2012) Geology, 40 (5), pp. 431-434.

Raimondo, T., Clark, C., Hand, M., Cliff, J., Harris, C. High-resolution geochemical record of fluid-rock interaction in a mid-crustal shear zone: A comparative study of major element and oxygen isotope transport in garnet(2012) Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 30 (3), pp. 255-280.

Mohais, R., Xu, C., Dowd, P.A., Hand, M. Permeability correction factor for fractures with permeable walls(2012) Geophysical Research Letters, 39 (3), art. no. L03403.

Cutts, K.A., Hand, M., Kelsey, D.E., Strachan, R.A. P-T constraints and timing of Barrovian metamorphism in the Shetland Islands, Scottish Caledonides: Implications for the structural setting of the Unst ophiolite(2011) Journal of the Geological Society, 168 (6), pp. 1265-1284.

Morrissey, L., Payne, J.L., Kelsey, D.E., Hand, M. Grenvillian-aged reworking in the North Australian Craton, central Australia: Constraints from geochronology and modelled phase equilibria(2011) Precambrian Research, 191 (3-4), pp. 141-165.

Raimondo, T., Clark, C., Hand, M., Faure, K. Assessing the geochemical and tectonic impacts of fluid-rock interaction in mid-crustal shear zones: A case study from the intracontinental Alice Springs Orogen, central Australia (2011) Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 29 (8), pp. 821-850.

Howard, K.E., Hand, M., Barovich, K.M., Payne, J.L., Cutts, K.A., Belousova, E.A. U-Pb zircon, zircon Hf and whole-rock Sm-Nd isotopic constraints on the evolution of Paleoproterozoic rocks in the northern Gawler Craton (2011) Australian Journal of Earth Sciences, 58 (6), pp. 615-638.

Howard, K.E., Hand, M., Barovich, K.M., Belousova, E. Provenance of late paleoproterozoic cover sequences in the central gawler craton: Exploring stratigraphic correlations in eastern proterozoic Australia using detrital zircon ages, Hf and Nd isotopic data(2011) Australian Journal of Earth Sciences, 58 (5), pp. 475-500.

Szpunar, M., Hand, M., Barovich, K., Jagodzinski, E., Belousova, E. Isotopic and geochemical constraints on the Paleoproterozoic Hutchison Group, southern Australia: Implications for Paleoproterozoic continental reconstructions(2011) Precambrian Research, 187 (1-2), pp. 99-126.

Holford, S.P., Hillis, R.R., Hand, M., Sandiford, M. Thermal weakening localizes intraplate deformation along the southern Australian continental margin (2011) Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 305 (1-2), pp. 207-214.

Cutts, K., Hand, M., Kelsey, D.E. Evidence for early Mesoproterozoic (ca. 1590Ma) ultrahigh-temperature metamorphism in southern Australia(2011) Lithos, 124 (1-2), pp. 1-16.


Forbes, C.J., Giles, D., Hand, M., Betts, P.G., Suzuki, K., Chalmers, N., Dutch, R. Using P-T paths to interpret the tectonothermal setting of prograde metamorphism: An example from the northeastern Gawler Craton, South Australia (2011) Precambrian Research, 185 (1-2), pp. 65-85.

Selway, K.M., Hand, M., Payne, J.L., Heinson, G.S., Reid, A. Magnetotelluric constraints on the tectonic setting of Grenville-aged orogenesis in central Australia(2011) Journal of the Geological Society, 168 (1), pp. 251-264.

Howard, K.E., Hand, M., Barovich, K.M., Payne, J.L., Belousova, E.A. U-Pb, Lu-Hf and Sm-Nd isotopic constraints on provenance and depositional timing of metasedimentary rocks in the western Gawler Craton: Implications for Proterozoic reconstruction models (2011) Precambrian Research, 184 (1-4), pp. 43-62.


Raimondo, T., Collins, A.S., Hand, M., Walker-Hallam, A., Smithies, R.H., Evins, P.M., Howard, H.M.vThe anatomy of a deep intracontinental orogen (2010) Tectonics, 29 (4), art. no. TC4024.

Phillips, G., Hand, M., Offler, R.vP-T-X controls on phase stability and composition in LTMP metabasite rocks - a thermodynamic evaluation(2010) Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 28 (5), pp. 459-476.

Dutch, R.A., Hand, M., Kelsey, D.E.vUnravelling the tectonothermal evolution of reworked Archean granulite facies metapelites using in situ geochronology: An example from the Gawler Craton, Australia(2010) Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 28 (3), pp. 293-316.

Cutts, K.A., Kinny, P.D., Strachan, R.A., Hand, M., Kelsey, D.E., Emery, M., Friend, C.R.L., Leslie, A.G. Three metamorphic events recorded in a single garnet: Integrated phase modelling, in situ LA-ICPMS and SIMS geochronology from the Moine Supergroup, NW Scotland (2010) Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 28 (3), pp. 249-267.

Payne, J.L., Ferris, G., Barovich, K.M., Hand, M. Pitfalls of classifying ancient magmatic suites with tectonic discrimination diagrams: An example from the Paleoproterozoic Tunkillia Suite, southern Australia(2010) Precambrian Research, 177 (3-4), pp. 227-240

Cawood, P.A., Strachan, R., Cutts, K., Kinny, P.D., Hand, M., Pisarevsky, S. Neoproterozoic orogeny along the margin of Rodinia: Valhalla orogen, North Atlantic(2010) Geology, 38 (2), pp. 99-102.

Dutch, R., Hand, M. Retention of Sm-Nd isotopic ages in garnets subjected to high-grade thermal reworking: Implications for diffusion rates of major and rare earth elements and the Sm-Nd closure temperature in garnet(2010) Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, 159 (1), pp. 93-112.

Clark, C., Hand, M. Decoding Mesoproterozoic and Cambrian metamorphic events in Willyama Complex metapelites through the application of Sm-Nd garnet geochronology and P-T pseudosection analysis (2010) Gondwana Research, 17 (1), pp. 59-74.

Payne, J.L., Hand, M., Barovich, K.M., Reid, A., Evans, D.A.D. Correlations and reconstruction models for the 2500-1500 Ma evolution of the Mawson Continent (2009) Geological Society Special Publication, 323, pp. 319-355.

Cutts, K.A., Hand, M., Kelsey, D.E., Wade, B., Strachan, R.A., Clark, C., Netting, A. Evidence for 930 Ma metamorphism in the Shetland Islands, Scottish Caledonides: Implications for Neoproterozoic tectonics in the Laurentia-Baltica sector of Rodinia(2009) Journal of the Geological Society, 166 (6), pp. 1033-1047.

Selway, K., Hand, M., Heinson, G.S., Payne, J.L. Magnetotelluric constraints on subduction polarity: Reversing reconstruction models for Proterozoic Australia (2009) Geology, 37 (9), pp. 799-802.

Raimondo, T., Collins, A.S., Hand, M., Walker-Hallam, A., Smithies, R.H., Evins, P.M., Howard, H.M. Ediacaran intracontinental channel flow (2009) Geology, 37 (4), pp. 291-294.

Howard, K.E., Hand, M., Barovich, K.M., Reid, A., Wade, B.P., Belousova, E.A.Detrital zircon ages: Improving interpretation via Nd and Hf isotopic data(2009) Chemical Geology, 262 (3-4), pp. 293-308.

Cutts, K.A., Hand, M., Kelsey, D.E., Strachan, R.A. Orogenic versus extensional settings for regional metamorphism: Knoydartian events in the Moine Supergroup revisited (2009) Journal of the Geological Society, 166 (2), pp. 201-204


CategoriesMining & Energy, Science & Technology
Expertisegeology; geothermal, structural geology; earthquakes; tectonics; rock deformation; formation of mountain ranges; plate tectonics; amalgamation of Australia; faults; folds; dating rocks; geochronology

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Entry last updated: Wednesday, 13 Jul 2016

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