Prof Cathy Hollis


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Chair of Carbonate Geoscience

I am Chair of Carbonate Geoscience at University of Manchester.  My work focuses on the sedimentology and diagenesis of carbonate systems.  I graduated with a PhD from University of Aberdeen in 1995, after which Iwas employed as a carbonate sedimentologist for Badley Ashton and Associates (1995-2001).  I then worked as a reservoir geologist at Shell International Exploration and Production and was Team Leader for the Carbonate Research Team (2005-2007). I am currently the research group lead for Sedimentary Basins research in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science, as well as co-ordinating carbonate research within the group. I have published over 35 papers in international, Q1 peer-reviewed journals in the last 10 years and graduated 14 PhD candidates. I am the principal investigator on an industrial research consortium (PD3) with Universities of Bergen, Bristol and Liverpool, and I also actively collaborate with research groups in France, Germany and Qatar.  I have been appointed to the UK REF2021 assessment and I am an Associate Editor for Sedimentology since 2014.

My current research focuses upon conceptual reconstruction of palaeo- fluid flow during diagenesis and the impact that post-depositional processes have on pore shape, size and connectivity, particularly

• Fault-and fracture controlled diagenesis within syn- and post-rift regimes, with ongoing projects in the Lower Carboniferous of northern England & Wales

• Processes governing the large-scale dolomitization of carbonate platforms, particularly in North Africa, the Carboniferous of the UK and the Cambrian-Devonian, West Canada Sedimentary Basn.

Regional trends in porosity modification within Cretaceous (Aptian-Turonian) carbonates of the Middle East and North Africa.  Projects are focused on porosity modification within the Shuaiba and Mishrif/Natih Formations on the Arabian Plate. 

Coupled with these studies is an ongoing interest in the quantification of pore shape and size, and the relationship between these parameters, diagenetic history and flow behaviour of carbonate rocks during hydrocarbon production, geothermal heat flux and / or carbon sequestration and gas storage.

I currently supervise 7 PhD students.  I also supervise MSc and MEng students.  My teaching includes modules in Carbonate Sedimentology (masters level), Formation Evaluation and Subsurface Data Analysis (masters and undergraduate). 





BSc (Hons) Geological Sciences, University of Birmingham, 1990

PhD, University of Aberdeen, 1995. 'Burial Diagenetic Events, Hydrocarbon Emplacement and Mineralisation in Dinantian Limestones of Northern Britain'

Areas of expertise

  • QE Geology - Sedimentology, Carbonates, Naturally porous media, Geochemistry

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