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Ian Metcalfe: Brief Biography

Ian Metcalfe obtained a BSc (Hons) in geology from Durham University, U.K. in 1971 and a PhD (conodont biostratigraphy) from Leeds University, U.K. in 1976. His academic career began as Lecturer at the University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in 1977 where he taught palaeontology, micropalaeontology and petroleum geology and supervised postgraduates at the Institute of Advanced Studies working on petroleum geology projects in the Malay Basin and in Sabah and Sarawak. He has subsequently held academic positions as Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor and Professor at the National University of Malaysia and University of New England (UNE), Australia.  He was Science Coordinator for the International Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Australian Secretariat (1992-1995) and Secretary of the IUGS Subcommision on Carboniferous Stratigraphy (1996-2000). His research has largely centred on East and Southeast Asia and he was Co-Leader of United Nationas International Geological Correlation Program (IGCP) Projects 321 "Gondwana dispersion & Asian accretion" (1991-1996) and 411 “Geodynamics of Gondwanaland-derived terranes in East and South Asia” (1998-2002). He was Deputy Director of the UNE Asia Centre from 2001-2008 and is currently on the Editorial boards of Journal of Asian Earth Sciences and Australian Journal of Earth Sciences. Prof. Metcalfe's palaeontological research focuses mainly on the microfossil group conodonts which he uses to precisely date marine Palaeozoic and Triassic marine sedimenrtary sequences, to estimate the thermal maturation levels of sedimentary rocks using their Colour Alteration Indices (CAI), to test palaeogeographic models using conodont biogeography, and most recently, using stable oxygen isotopes, to estimate ancient sea surface temperatures. He has also researched radiolarian microfossils from deep-sea sediments that were deposited in ancient Tethys Ocean basins to work out the age and age-duration of these now lost oceans. His international reputation is for studies of conodont microfossils, the Palaeozoic and Mesozoic tectonic framework, evolution and palaeogeography of East and SE Asia (eastern Gondwana and the Tethys ocean basins), and for studies of the Permian Triassic boundary and end-Permian mass extinction in China and more recently in Australia. Recent major research projects also include high-precision U-Pb zircon dating of volcanic tuffs (ashes) in Permian-Triassic sequences in China and Australia and Permian-Triassic timescale calibration.

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