Geology and Geochemistry

The Geology and Geochemistry groups at New Mexico Tech consist of nine regular faculty members and a large number of adjunct faculty. In addition, there are numerous researchers who specialize in geology and geochemistry at the New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources, which is located on campus. Many of these scientists actively participate in the supervision of graduate and undergraduate student projects.

Economic Geology

The geology of ore deposits has been an important area of research at New Mexico Tech for many years. Studies of ore deposits are carried out in the Earth and Environmental Science Department as well as the New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources and in the Department of Mining and Minerals Engineering. There are three faculty whose primary research interests are in the field of ore-deposit research. Many of the studies in the department involve the origins of metallic ore deposits. We have excellent facilities for determining the source, timing, and physical conditions of the ore forming fluids. Campbell and Chavez are currently co-editors of the SEG News Letter for the Society of Economic Geologists.

Geology/geochemistry faculty working on economic geology projects

Department of Mining and Minerals Engineering faculty working on economic geology projects

Ore Deposit Exploration Option

Faults and Fluid Flow

Overview of Our Group Faculty and Graduate Students
Some Publications from the Group                 Related Links
News on our Facebook page  

Sedimentary Geology


A number of Geology/Geochemistry faculty and adjunct faculty work on projects related to stratigraphy, sedimentology, and diagenesis. Information about specific research interests can be found on the appropriate faculty page.

Faculty & Adjuncts

Current Research

Structural Geology


New Mexico Tech has a large and diverse group of people involved in structural research, located in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science, the Department of Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering, and the New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources. Interests of this group range from structures developed in metamorphic tectonites to faulting of unconsolidated sediments. Studies are conducted from detailed field work at all scales, modeling, and timing of deformation (fission track analysis and Ar/Ar geochronology). A recent thrust of members of this group has been to look at relationships between faulting and fluid flow in unconsolidated sediments.

New Mexico is, geologically speaking, a very diverse state, and many structural studies are possible within 1-2 hours of New Mexico Tech. Facilities for structural research include: a Starkey X-ray texture camera for complete crystallographic preferred orientations, a structural lab with image analysis facilities for the texture camera, petrographic microscopes, and U-stage, a state of the art automated lab for Ar/Ar geochronology, and a lab for fission track analysis. We recently got a Cameca SX100 Microprobe. Information about specific research interests in structural geology can be found on the appropriate faculty home pages.

We usually have 2 or 3 structurally related seminars per semester in our departmental seminar series. The structure group also meets weekly; in these meetings we discuss such things as our current research, any particular problems we are having in our research (a collective brain-storming session, interesting papers we have read recently, etc.).

The Structurions

Geology & Geochemistry Program

Hydrology Program

New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources

Areas of Research Interest

Links to Structural Geology Resources

The Structural Geology Page (by Smith College’s Department of Geology)

Structure and Tectonics Division of the Geological Society of America


New Mexico Tech has has broad interdisciplinary research and teaching interests in volcanology and magmatic systems, both in the Earth and Environmental Science Department and the New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources. Many research projects are ongoing within the state of New Mexico as well as around the world (including a historically strong and continuing program in Antarctica). We host a range of analytical facilities (listed below) that are particularly well-suited to geochemical analysis of volcanic products and dating of volcanic eruptions. Opportunities for research projects in volcanology are available at levels ranging from undergraduate through Ph.D.

A large number of volcanic features are readily accessible from the Socorro area. The town sits on the margin of a caldera that produced a large, Oligocene ignimbrite; part of the Mogollon-Datil volcanic field and seismological investigations indicate that a substantial magma body resides in the mid-crust today. The young, basaltic, and extremely well-preserved Carrizozo lava flow is nearby, as is the Valles Caldera, Mount Taylor stratovolcano, the Grants Malpais Volcanic Field, and many other small basaltic and rhyolitic volcanic centers.

Numerous Ph.D. and M.S. graduate students!


Facilities and Additional Links