Nigel Blamey

Department of Earth Sciences




Nigel Blamey

Assistant Professor

Economic geologist/geochemist with interests in: fluid inclusions, quantitative fluid inclusion volatile analysis, hydrothermal ore deposits, geothermal systems, exploration geochemistry, transmitted- and reflected-light microscopy, stable isotopes, fluid-rock equilibria and reactions, metal solubility in hydrothermal systems.

Biography

Career History

  • 2012 – present: Assistant Professor of Earth Sciences, Brock University
  • 2011-2012: Researcher, Department of Earth Sciences, Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • 2010–present: Adjunct Professor of Geochemistry, New Mexico Tech
  • 2009-present: Honorary Research Fellow, University of Aberdeen
  • 2008–2009: Visiting Professor, New Mexico Tech
  • 2006–2008: Researcher, Dept. Chemistry, National University of Ireland, Galway
  • 2003–2006: Consulting Geologist
  • 2002-2003: Director R&D, Intor
  • 2000-2002: Post-doc Researcher, New Mexico Tech
  • 1996-2000: Research and teaching assistant, New Mexico Tech
  • 1988-1995: Senior Geologist, Western Holdings Mine
  • 1982-1987: Mining and Exploration Geologist, Iscor

 

Qualifications

  • Ph.D. New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, 2000
  • M.Sc.(Econ Geol) Rhodes University, 1992
  • B.Sc.(Hons.) Rhodes University, 1989
  • B.Sc. University of Natal, Durban, 1979

 

Visiting Appointments

  • Visiting Professor, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (2008-2009)

 

Teaching

  • ERSC 1F90 Geology and the Environment
  • ERSC 2P21 Mineralogy
  • ERSC 3P98 Ore Geology
  • ERSC 4P13 Advanced Geochemistry
  • ERSC 4P53 Mining Geology
  • ERTH 4023 Advanced Geochemistry (MUN)
  • ERTH390 Principles of Geochemistry (NMT)
  • GEOC554 Fluid Inclusions (NMT)
  • GEOC562 Ore Genesis (NMT)
  • GEOC543 Fluid-Mineral Equilibria (NMT)
  • GEOC561 Ore Deposits (NMT) 

 

Research
I am a geochemist who specializes in fluid inclusion and geochemical applications to geothermal systems, hydrothermal ore deposits, and petroleum basins.  My principle tool is a custom-built mass spectrometer system for fluid inclusion gas analysis.  This unique system quantitatively analyses fluid inclusion volatiles including: H2, He, CH4, H2O, N2, O2, H2S, Ar, CO2, SO2, C2-C4 alkanes and alkenes, and benzene.  Although much of the fluid inclusion gas analysis was pioneered by David Norman, it wasn't until 2000 when he and I developed the interpretation as an exploration tool for the geothermal industry.  It is equally applicable to the study of many hydrothermal ore deposits.  To date I have analyzed samples from several geothermal systems, four gold settings, epithermal Au-Ag, porphyry Cu and Mo, MVTs, black smokers, pegmatites, metamorphic veins, emeralds, iron ore, carbonatites, diagenetic carbonates, desert carbonates, speleothems, amber, Libyan desert glass, fulgurites, impact craters, meteorites, and man-made materials.  Gas analysis may be used to discriminate fluid sources (magmatic, meteoric, basinal), identify processes (boiling, condensational, mixing, equilibrium), constrain redox, correct isochors, apply gas geothermometry, and provide the gas concentrations for fluid-rock equilibria modeling.  Modeling of gold, silver and base metal solubility as well as mineral stability can be achieved.

 

Publications

Book chapters

  • Blamey , N.J.F., and Ryder, A.G., 2009, Review of fluorescent applications to hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusions. Reviews in Fluorescence, Ch 13, 299-334. DOI 10.1007/978-0-387-88722-7_13  

 

Research Articles

  • Parnell, J., Blamey, N.J.F., Costanzo, A., Feely, M., Boyce, A.C., 2014, Preservation of Mesoproterozoic age deep burial fluid signatures, NW Scotland. Marine & Petroleum Geology, in press. DOI: 10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2013.11.018.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Azmy, K., and Brand, U., 2014, Provenance and burial history of cement in sandstones of the Northbrook Formation (Carboniferous), western Newfoundland, Canada: a geochemical investigation. Sedimentary Geology, v. 299, p. 30-41. DOI: 10.1016/j.sedgeo.2013.10.005.
  • Parnell, J., McMahon, S., Blamey, N.J.F., Hutchinson, I., Harris, L., Ingley, R., Edwards, H., Lynch, E., and Feely, M., 2014, Detection of reduced carbon in a basalt analogue for Martian Nakhlite: a signpost to habitat on Mars. International Journal of Astrobiology, v. 13, p. 124-131, DOI: 10.1017/S1473550413000360.

  • Price, M., Ramkissoon, N., McMahon, S., Miljkovic, K., Parnell, J., Kearsley, A., Blamey, N.J.F., Cole, M., and Burchell, M., 2014, Limits on methane release and generation via hypervelocity impact of Martian analog materials. International Journal of Astrobiology, v. 13, p. 132-140. DOI: 10.1017/S1473550413000384.

  • Azmy, K., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2013, Origin of diagenetic fluids inferred from fluid inclusion gas ratios. Ghemical Geology, 347, 246-254. DOI: 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2013.04.011.
  • Conliffe, J., Wilton, D.H.C., Blamey, N.J.F., and Archibald, S.M., 2013, Paleoproterozoic Mississippi Valley type Pb-Zn mineralization in the Ramah Group, Northern Labrador: Stable isotope, fluid inclusion and quantitative fluid inclusion gas analyses. Chemical Geology, 362, 211-223. DOI: 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2013.08.032.
  • McMahon, S., Parnell, J., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2013, Sampling methane in basalt on Earth and Mars. International Journal of Astrobiology, 12, 113-122. DOI: 10.1017/S1473550412000481.
  • Azomani, E., Azmy, K., Blamey, N.J.F., Brand, U., and Al-Aasm, I., 2013, Origin of Lower Ordovician dolomites in eastern Laurentia: Controls on porosity and implications from Geochemistry. Marine and Petroleum Geology, 40, 99-114. DOI: 10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2012.10.007.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., 2012, Composition and evolution of crustal, geothermal and hydrothermal fluids interpreted using quantitative fluid inclusion gas analysis. Journal of Geochemical Exploration, 116-117, 17-27. DOI:10.1016/j.gexplo.2012.03.001.
  • Wright, A.J., Blamey, N.J.F., Conliffe, F.J., and Parnell, J., 2012, Origin of vein-graphite in Moine (Glenfinnan Group) rocks, NW Scotland, supported by the study of volatile gases in fluid-inclusions. Scottish Journal of Geology, 48, 47-59. DOI 10.1144/0036-9276/01-426.
  • McMahon, S., Parnell, J., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2012, Sampling Methane in hydrothermal minerals on Earth and Mars. International Journal of Astrobiology, 11, 163-167. DOI 10.1017/S1473550412000067.
  • Parnell, J., Bowden, S.A., Muirhead, D., Blamey, N.J.F., Westall, F., Demets, R., Verchovsky, S., Brandstätter, F., and Brack, A., 2011, Preservation of organic matter in the STONE 6 artificial meteorite experiment. Icarus, 212, 390-402. DOI 10.1016/j.icarus.2010.11.029
  • Parry, W.T., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2010, Fault fluid composition from fluid inclusion measurements, Laramide Age Uinta Thrust Fault, Utah. Chemical Geology, 278, 105-119. DOI 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2010.09.005
  • Parnell, J., Boyce, A.J., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2010, Follow the methane: the search for a deep biosphere, and the case for sampling serpentinites, on Mars. Int. J. Astrobiology, 9, 193-200. DOI 10.1017/S1473550410000200
  • Conliffe, J., Blamey, N.J.F., Feely, M., Parnell, J., and Ryder, A.G., 2010, Hydrocarbon migration in Jurassic sandstones from the Porcupine Basin, offshore Ireland: evidence from fluid inclusion studies, Petroleum Geoscience, 16, 67-76. DOI 10.1144/1354-079309-007
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Conliffe, J., Parnell, J., Ryder, A.G., and Feely, M., 2009, Application of fluorescence lifetime measurements on single petroleum-bearing fluid inclusions to demonstrate multicharge history in petroleum reservoirs. Geofluids, 9, 330-337. DOI 10.1111/j.1468-8123.2009.00265.x
  • Morrison, L., Feely, M., Stengel, D.B., Blamey, N.J.F., Dockery, P., Sherlock, A., and Timmins, E., 2009, Seaweed attachment to bedrock: biophysical evidence for a new geophycology paradigm, Geobiology, 7, 1-11. DOI: 10.1111/j.1472-4669.2009.00206.x.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Ryder, A.G., Feely, M., Dockery, P., and Owens, P., 2008, The application of structured-light illumination to hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusions. Geofluids, 8, 102-112. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-8123.2008.00209.x
  • Owens, P., Ryder, A.G., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2008, Frequency domain fluorescence lifetime study of crude petroleum oils. Journal of Fluorescence, 18, 997-1006. DOI: 10.1007/s10895-008-0330-5
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Ryder, A.G., Owens, P., Feely, M., and Dockery, P., 2007, The geological application of structured-light illumination microscopy: An example using hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusion fluorescence. In Focus, (March issue).
  • Blamey, N.J.F., 2006, H2S concentrations in geothermal and hydrothermal fluids – a new gas geothermometer. 31st Workshop on geothermal reservoir engineering, CD.
  • Norman, D.I., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2005, Methane in Carlin-type gold deposit fluid inclusions. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 69, 10, 124.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., and Norman, D.I., 2002, New Interpretations of Geothermal Fluid Inclusion Volatiles: Ar/He and N2/Ar ratios - A Better Indicator of Magmatic Volatiles, and Equilibrium Gas Geothermometry. 27th Workshop on geothermal reservoir engineering, CD.
  • Norman, D.I., Blamey, N.J.F., and Kurilovitch, L., 2002, New applications of geothermal gas analysis to exploration. Transactions of Geothermal Resources Council, 26, 345-353.
  • Norman, D.I., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2002, Interpreting geothermal processes and fluid sources from fluid inclusion organic compounds and CO2/N2 ratios. 27th Workshop on geothermal reservoir engineering, 2002, p. 266-274.
  • Lutz, S.J., Moore, J.N., Blamey, N.J.F., and Norman, D.I., 2002, Fluid-Inclusion Gas Chemistry of the Dixie Valley (NV) Geothermal System. 27th Workshop on geothermal reservoir engineering, CD.
  • Norman, D.I., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2001, Quantitative analysis of fluid inclusion volatiles by a two quadrupole mass spectrometer system. ECROFI, p. 341-344.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., and Norman, D.I., 2001, Fluid inclusion evidence for a supercritical magmatic fluid, modified by wall-rock interaction and mixing with meteoric waters. 26th Workshop on geothermal reservoir engineering, CD.
  • Norman, D.I., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2001, Overabundance of gaseous species and the source of organic compounds in geothermal fluids. 26th Workshop on geothermal reservoir engineering, CD.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., and Norman, D.I., 2000, Fluid inclusion evidence for gold mineralization related to decalcification during an Early Cretaceous event at the Pipeline Gold Mine, Nevada. GSN (2000). (Silver medallion award in best student paper category; peer reviewed).

 

Recent talks and published conference abstracts

  • Kelson, C.R., Coffey, C.V., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2013, Mineralogical, geochemical and isotopic characterization of the Powers Farm tourmaline occurrence, St. Lawrence Co., New York. GSA NE section, Paper 216189.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., 2012, Expanding the understanding of geofluid studies using fluid inclusion gas analysis by mass spectrometry, Goldschmidt Conference (invited talk).
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Parnell, J., and Longerich, H.P., 2012, Understanding detection limits in fluid inclusion analysis using an incremental crush fast scan method for planetary science. LPSC.
  • McMahon, S., Parnell, J., Burchell, M., and Blamey, N.J.F., 2012, Methane retention by rocks following simulated meteorite impacts: Implications for Mars. LPSC.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., and Azmy, K., 2011, Origin of cementation during the burial history of the North Brook Formation sandstones, western Newfoundland, Canada: implications for controls on porosity distribution. NAPSA, p. 19.
  • Parnell, J., McMahon, S., Ferguson, G., Blamey, N.J.F., Boyce, A.J., 2011, Identification of methane-rich rocks and their potential to support life, on Earth and Mars. Royal Astronomical Society, Abs., p. 25-26.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Boslough, M.B.E., Newsom, H.E., and Parnell, J., 2010, Quantitative fluid inclusion gas analysis of airburst, nuclear, impact, and fulgurite glasses. GSA Abstracts with Programs, v. 42, p. 305.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Wright, A.J., Parnell, J., Conliffe, F.J., 2010, Evidence for lithological control on the fluid inclusion gas chemistry generated during amphibolite grade metamorphism, Scotland. PACROFI, p. 19-20.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Parnell, J., Westall, F., and Demets, R., 2010, Fluid inclusion gas changes during the STONE 6 experiment induced by passage through the Earth’s atmosphere. PACROFI, p. 13-14.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Boston, P.J., and Rosales-Lagarde, L., 2010, Fluid inclusions in speleothems: Time capsules of climate change and microbial processes. PACROFI, p. 15-16.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., and Boslough, M.B.E., 2010, Evidence for an airburst origin for Libyan Desert Glass using inclusion gas analysis. PACROFI, p. 17-18.
  • Costanzo, A., Blamey, N.J.F., Feely, M., Lynch, E.P., Pironon, T., Lavin, P., 2010, Emeralds from the Piteiras Mine, Minas Gerais State, Brazil: genetic implications from fluid inclusion studies. PACROFI, p. 31-32.
  • Conliffe, J., Wilton, D.H.C., Blamey, N.J.F., Archibald, S.A., 2010, Paleoproterozoic Mississippi Valley Type Pb-Zn mineralization in the Ramah Group, Northern Labrador. PACROFI, p. 27-28.
  • Costanzo, A., Feely, M., Lynch, E.P., Blamey, N.J.F., Raggi, J., 2009, Fluids associated with the formation of emeralds from the Piteiras Mine, Minas Gerais State, Brazil. 52th Annual Irish Geological Research Meeting, Trinity College Dublin.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Ryder, A.G., Feely, M., Conliffe, F.J., Owens, P., and Parnell, J., 2008, A quantitative non-destructive fluorescence lifetime method for the analysis of single hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusions: a portal to the discrimination of petroleum multi-charge histories. PACROFI, p. 9.
  • Ryder, A.G., Blamey, N.J.F., Feely, M., and Owens, P., 2007, Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy for the analysis of hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusions, the frequency domain approach. ELMI, (accepted).
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Ryder, A.G., Feely, M., and Owens, P., 2007, Fluorescence lifetime analysis of single hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusions – A paragenetic perspective, IMOG, p. 669-670.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., and Norman, D.I., 2007, Quantitative fluid inclusion gas analysis and interpretation of quartz-hosted fluid inclusions from the Pipeline Gold Mine, Nevada: Application to a Carlin-type deposit. ECROFI, p. 206.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Ryder, A.G., Owens, P., Feely, M., and Naranjo-Vesga, J.F., 2007, Fluorescence lifetime measurements of single hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusions. ECROFI, p. 42.
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Ryder, A.G., Feely, M., and Owens, P., 2007, Preliminary fluorescence lifetime measurements on hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusions from the Porcupine Basin, offshore Western Ireland. IGRM, (accepted).
  • Blamey, N.J.F., Ryder, A.G., Owens, P., Feely, M., and Dockery, P., 2006, “The geological application of structured-light illumination microscopy: An example using hydrocarbon-bearing fluid inclusion fluorescence. Microscopy Society of Ireland, p. 25.
  • D.I. Norman, N.J.F. Blamey, and B.M. Kennedy, 2002, “Analyses of Ar-He-N2 ratios in magmatic and geothermal fluid inclusions”, (PACROFI Abstracts, 2002, p. 75).
  • L. Kurilovitch, D.I. Norman, and N.J.F. Blamey, 2002, “Fluid inclusion gas analysis; a new geothermal and mineral exploration tool”. In: Global Exploration 2002; integrated methods for discovery, Society of Economic Geologists, Monograph, p. 110.
  • A. Rowe, V.T. McLemore, B.M. Walker, D.I. Norman, and N.J.F. Blamey, 2002, “Genetic evolution of the magmatic hydrothermal breccia and stockwork veinlets of the Goat Hill ore body, Questa porphyry molybdenum system New Mexico”. In: Global Exploration 2002; integrated methods for discovery, Society of Economic Geologists, Monograph, p. 137.
  • A. Rowe, V.T. McLemore, B.M. Walker, N.J.F. Blamey and D.I. Norman, 2002, “Genetic Evolution of the magmatic hydrothermal breccia and stockwork veinlets of the Goat Hill Orebody, Questa Porphyry Molybdenum System, New Mexico”, (NMGS Annual Spring Meeting, Abstracts, 2002, p. 46).