We invite you to study with us! Our permanent teaching staff consists of 7 professors, 2 associate professors and 6 university lectures. The students and the staff members are mostly Finnish, but about 20% of the research staff are from outside of Finland, and the number of international students and other researchers in the department has been increasing steadily over the past decade.

Petrology and Bedrock Geology

Tapani Rämö is the Head of the programme and Professor of Geology and Mineralogy. He teaches topics including Petrology, Physical geology and Scientific writing in English.  His research topics deal with:

  • The origin, evolution, and metallogeny of granitoid rocks
  • Geochemistry
  • Isotope geology
  • The evolution of the continental crust
  • Proterozoic continental flood basalts and massif-type anorthosites

Christoph Beier is a Professor of Geochemistry and his teaching topics include petrology, geochemistry and analytical methods. His main interests in research include

  • Igneous trace element and isotope geochemistry and petrology
  • Geochemistry of the short-lived U-series decay chains
  • Spatial and temporal evolution of magmatic systems
  • Geology and Petrology of marine igneous systems

Mikael Fortelius is a Professor of Evolutionary Palaeontology, and his study track is Palaeontology and Global Change. His teaching topics include Life and earth history, Mammalian and human evolution, the Development, morphology, function and evolution of teeth, and the History of earth and life sciences. 

Research interests:

  • Evolution of Eurasian land mammals and terrestrial environments 
  • Computational approaches to palaeobiology and evolution
  • Environments of human origins and evolution, human ecosystem impacts

Juha Karhu is a Professor of Geology and Mineralogy. His teaching topics include Geochemistry, Isotope geochemisty, Hydrogeochemical modelling and Precambrian geology. His research interests include:

  • Carbon isotopes, carbon cycle and the evolution of the atmospheric oxygen
  • Systematics of the Isotope composition of hydrogen and oxygen in the hydrological cycle
  • Oxygen isotope ratios as a paleoclimate proxy

Ilmo Kukkonen is a professor in Solid Earth Geophysics and he is teaching a number of courses from introduction to solid earth geophysics to lithospheric structures and borehole geophysics. His research topics include:

  • Seismic ore exploration
  • Thermal modelling of Fennoscandian Shield

Petri Peltonen is a Professor of Practice for Economic Geology.  He teaches courses in Geology and Mineralogy of Ore Deposits, Mineral Exploration and Mineral Economics.

His research interests include:

  • Ore-forming processed in magmatic systems
  • Orogenic gold deposits
  • Mantle petrology and formation of diamond deposits
  • Methods of mineral exploration

Heikki Seppä is a Professor of Quaternary Geology. His teaching topics include biostratigraphy, exogenous processes, Quaternary geology, and paleoclimatology.

His research topics are the interface of geological, climatological and biological sciences and he combines proxy data with climate and ecosystems models and quantitative reconstruction techniques to investigate past climate changes and associated population and ecosystem changes.

Gregor Hillers is Associate Professor in Earthquake Seismology. He teaches a number of courses associated with earthquake physics and seismic wave propagation. His research focuses on earthquakes, fault zone structure, modes of deformation along fault zones, and earthquake and fault zone interaction and triggering mechanisms on a local and regional scale. His team analyzes seismic waves emanated from earthquakes, but extract also information from the ambient seismic wave field or noise. The research depends on the application and development of analysis techniques for estimating earthquake source parameters, for structural imaging and for the monitoring of time dependent changes in crustal and fault zone materials on time scales ranging from seconds to years. This work is based on processing large seismic data sets (big data at its very best) and has thus multiple connections to physics and atmospheric sciences (wave propagation), mathematics and medical imaging (inverse problems), and computer science (code development).

David Whipp is an Associate Professor of Geodynamic Modelling and his study track in the programme is Solid Earth Geophysics. He teaches courses in Geodynamics, Quantitative Geology, Lithospheric structure and dynamics, and Geodynamic Modelling. His research interests include:

  • Lithospheric geodynamics
  • The interactions of climate, erosion, and tectonics in mountains
  • Thermochronology
  • Numerical modelling
  • High-performance computing

Aku Heinonen is a University Lecturer in Petrology. In the MSc program he teaches advanced petrography of igneous rocks.

His research interests include:

- Bedrock geology

- Petrology of igneous rocks (especially granitic and anorthositic rocks)

- Isotope geochemical and mineralogical applications in igneous petrology

Jussi Heinonen is a Research Fellow of the Academy of Finland and is running a 5-year project (2016-2021) that is related to thermodynamical and geochemical modeling of the crystallization of layered intrusions. Layered intrusions host many important Cu, Ni, and platinum-group element ores and the poorly known reactions of the hot magma with the adjacent wallrocks are thought to play an important part in the generation of such mineralizations. Jussi is also involved in a project that studies the volatile contents and sources of continental flood basalts, the largest volcanic eruptions on Earth. Flood basalts have been his main area of research for ten years already. Jussi teaches igneous petrology, structural geology, and 3D modeling and enjoys rock climbing and playing guitar in his spare time.

Anu Kaakinen is an Academy Research Fellow. Her teaching centres around sedimentology and stratigraphy. Her main research interests lie in Late Cenozoic climate, environments and ecosystems of Eurasia, and the current research projects include geological and paleontological field work in China and Iran.

Her main research interests include:

  • Evolution of Eurasian terrestrial environments
  • The history of East Asian Monsoons
  • Wind-blown dust in East Asia

Emilia Koivisto is a University Lecturer. She is teaching applied geophysics in numerous courses, including courses on reflection seismology and ground penetrating radar.

Her research interests include:

  • How smaller and larger-scale mineralizing systems operate and are related to distribution of raw material resources and geophysical anomalies
  • Seismic mineral exploration in hard rock environments
  • Data mining for interpretation of mineral exploration data
  • Environmental impacts of mining
  • Intersections of science and policy

Other concurrent research (in collaboration with Rice University, Houston, TX, USA) includes quantification of plate motion, and the uncertainties of such motion, relative to the hotspots, and tests for motion between hotspots.

Kirsti Korkka-Niemi is a University Lecturer and holds the title of Docent in hydrogeology. Her teaching focuses on hydrogeology and geochemistry.
Her research topics include:

  • Hydrogeology
  • Geochemistry
  • Environmental geology

Seija Kultti is a University Lecturer and her teaching centres around environmental geology.

Her research topics include:

  • Arctic palaeoclimatology and tree-line history

Elina Lehtonen is a University Lecturer in Petrology. In the MSc program, she teaches for example in the courses of igneous and sedimentary rocks petrology.

Radek Michallik is responsible for the electron beam laboratory and rock sample preparation. He is teaching theory and praxis of microbeam instruments. His research is currently focused on mineral-specific trace element geochemistry of pegmatite evolution in rapakivi granite.

Sanni is doing research in co-operation with Finnish Museum of Natural History. The topic revolves around the mapping of mantle sources of intercontinental flood basalts, which overlaps with distinguishing the geochemical mantle resevoir types in Earth's interior. The ongoing works concerns the most primitive lavas of Karoo Large Igneous Province, which are found in Southern Africa and coastal Western Antarctica. Methods of research include isotope and trace element geochemistry and fluid inclusion analysis.