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Contact details

Leader of Marine Geosystems
Ocean BioGeosciences
michael.clare at
+44 (0)23 8059 6550



Research Interests

My research interests are focused on applying process-based sedimentology to a range of applications including:

1. Better understanding how onshore sediment transport systems link to those in the deep sea, including the controls played by ocean currents on pollutant dispersal (e.g. microplastics)

2. Characterising seafloor geohazards, such as submarine landslides and turbidity currents, and determining how they are preconditioned, triggered and evolve downslope

3. Quantifying the rate and flux of deep sea sediment transport over timescales from minutes to millions of years, including the role played by climatic variations

4. Assessing risks posed to globally important seafloor infrastructure, such as telecommunications cables and pipelines, by submarine geohazards

5. Linking modern seafloor processes with ancient geological archives through integration of direct monitoring, repeat seafloor surveys, and sedimentary analysis

I work with a combination of data from outcrop and sediment cores, high resolution marine geophysical data, evidence of disruption and damage to infrastructure (e.g. cable breaks), and novel application of marine sensors to monitor sediment transport and geohazards, from sites spanning lakes, to fjords and the deep sea.

Current PhD students (*denotes lead supervision):

  • Mohammad Zaki Zulkifli* - Monitoring and modelling geohazards in active submarine channels (Knight Inlet, Lake Geneva, Congo Canyon)

Previous PhD students:

  • Lewis Bailey* - Triggering and preconditioning of turbidity currents (Bute Inlet, Monterey Canyon & East Africa)
  • Daniela Vendettuoli* - Linking active turbidity currents with their deposits and stratigraphic evolution (Squamish delta and Congo Canyon)
  • Maarten Heijnen* - Morphodynamics of submarine channels and their evolution (Bute Inlet & Congo Canyon)
  • Age Vellinga - Morphodynamics of cyclic steps in rivers and submarine channels (numerical modelling)
  • Ed Pope - Triggers and consequences of powerful turbidity currents related to earthquakes, cyclones & climate change (Arctic margin and global database of cable breaks)
  • Josh Allin - Frequency of large submarine landslides and turbidity currents (Norwegian margin and NW Atlantic canyons)
  • Maria Azpiroz - Hydrodynamics of field-scale turbidity currents (Congo Canyon & Black Sea)
  • Sophie Hage - Linking turbidity current monitoring to deposits and organic carbon burial (Squamish delta)
  • Jamie Hizzett - Quantification of the near-bed behaviour of turbidity currents (experimental studies)