Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Trinity Menu Trinity Search

You are here People > Students

Geology Department Postgraduate Web Pages

Name: Maurice Brodbeck

Maurice Brodbeck

Contact Details

Tel:+353 (0) 89 421 9547
Fax: +353 (0)1 6711199

Title of Project

The distribution of precious metals and energy critical elements (ECEs) at different scales (ore-body, ore-shoot to mineral scales).

Project details

It is well known, that ECEs occur as trace elements in base metal sulphides, especially in Zn and Cu ores and poly-sulphides. However, it is poorly understood, how these ECEs substitute in major transition metal sulphides and how they are distributed at the mineral scale. In the absence of this knowledge, effective mining and production of these precious metals is limited.

This project will be undertaken in close collaboration with Industry Partners Teck Ireland, Boliden Tara Mines, Lundin Mining, SLR (PIPCO), and Trevali Mining Corporation.
Samples and existing lithogeochemistry data from the sponsors will be used to systematically survey and categorise Cu and Zn deposits in terms of ECE potential. Irish-type deposits will be compared with other major base metal deposits. Samples will be studied with LA-ICP-OES in order to visualise and quantify the concentrations of these metals in the base metal ores. In the following, conclusions can be drawn to establish how these elements partition into the primary ores.
The final aim is to develop an ECE and precious metal distribution database, which could serve as an early stage exploration guide. For particular types of deposits, it could then be assessed, if the association and the abundance of the ECEs is of economic importance.

Name of supervisors

Prof Balz Kamber

Postgraduate personal details

My geologic interest focuses on geochemistry and petrology, applied to economic and environmental questions.

In 2011 I finished my Bachelor studies in geoscience at the University of Tübingen. My Bachelor thesis dealt with changes in sedimentation and environmental conditions that appeared during the late Jurassic period in the Swabian Marl Basin. Therefore I examined C-O isotope signatures, as well as major- and trace element concentrations in upper Jurassic carbonates from the Swabian Alb.
In 2015 I graduated from the University of Tübingen with a Master’s degree in geoscience. In the related thesis I assessed the origin of the UG2 chromitite, a world-class chromium/platinum deposit in the Bushveld Complex. This was conducted on the basis of geochemical parameters as 87Sr/86Sr isotope signatures, element concentration relations and petrographic findings.

Project Start Date

January 2016




  • Brodbeck, M., Zhou, L., and Kamber, B.S. (2017): The distribution of precious and energy critical metals at the scale of a copper deposit. Applied Earth Science, p. 1-1.
  • Brodbeck, M. (2015) Master thesis: “Constraining chromitite formation through in situ geochemical analyses - A study of the UG2 unit, Bushveld Complex, South Africa”
  • Brodbeck, M. (2011) Bachelor thesis: “C-O Isotopensignaturen in oberjurassischen Karbonaten der Schwäbischen Alb”