I have a general research interest in igneous petrology and geochemistry, specifically with a focus on petrology involving volcanism and magma dynamics. My MRes research focused on the correlations between the geochemistry of volcanic rocks and theoretical mineral assemblages based on the geochemistry (norms), with specific interest with the classification boundaries of the calc-alkaline rock series in a classification diagram. As an undergraduate student I undertook palaeontological research, funded by the Palaeontological Association, to examine and interpret previously undescribed Ordovician age fossils from south-eastern Morocco. This led to a report, a poster presentation at the Palaeontological Association Annual Meeting and subsequently co-authoring, as 3rd author, Muir et al. 2018, which identified a new species of agglutinated worm (Onuphionella corusca sp. nov.).
My PhD research aims to assess the nature of the changes in geochemistry and mineralogy of a stratigraphically well-constrained set of lava flows on the Isle of Mull by modelling the magmatic evolution, primarily through petrography and textual analysis. Magmatic evolution of the Mull Palaeogene lava succession, western Scotland, consists of three geochemically distinct magma types and has been extensively documented geochemically, however, quantifying textural differences in the main mineral phases has not. This will be achieved by modelling geochemical and petrographic variations of the minerals throughout the lava flows and assess textural analysis, such as crystal size and shape, to determine magmatic processes occurring in and affecting the magma produced at Mull. This helps to improve our geological understanding of magma chamber dynamics through combined textural, petrological, and geochemical modelling and to give a broader approach to model the magmatic system, active at Mull during the Palaeogene.
- Muir, L. A., Botting, J. P., Walker, S. N. A., Schiffbauer, J. D., and MacGabhann, B. A., (2018) ‘Onuphionella corusca sp. nov.: an early Cambrian-type agglutinated tube from Upper Ordovician strata of Morocco’, Geological Society, London, Special Publications, vol. 485, pp. SP485-7.
- Walker, S. N. A. (2018) ‘Taxonomy and taphonomy of ‘sparkly worm tubes’, Palaeontology Newsletter, Palaeontological Association, no. 98.
- Walker, S. N. A., Schiffbauer, J. D., Muir, L. A., Botting, J. P. and MacGabhann, B. A. (2017) ‘Mica-agglutinating worm tubes from the Upper Ordovician of Tafilalt, South-eastern Morocco’, [Poster], Palaeontological Association 61st Annual Meeting, 17 – 19th December, Imperial College, London.
Awards & Grants
- Edge Hill University’s Chancellors scholarship (2018-2019)
- Palaeontological Association conference travel grant (2017)
- Palaeontological Association Undergraduate Research Bursary (2017)
- Mineralogical society