Associate Professor

 Head of Department

 Igneous and mantle petrology, cosmochemistry

  Room 353
  Department of Geological Sciences
  Ph:  +27 (0)21 650 2929
  Fax:  +27 (0)21 650 3783

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Associate Editor for Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth


My research involves the application of elemental, radiogenic isotope and "non-traditional" stable isotope techniques to understand the geochemical evolution of the Earth’s mantle and crust, This is mainly done through the analysis of mantle xenoliths and igneous rocks formed at intraplate settings and mid-ocean ridges. I am also interested in using the above techniques to investigate the environmental conditions and formation history of planets in the early Solar System.  Current research projects include:

              •The use of ultramafic alkaline igneous rocks (kimberlites, olivine melilitites, lamprophyres) and carbonatites to understand the nature of lithosphere-asthenosphere interactions and the geochemical evolution of the continental lithospheric mantle.

              •Investigation of the petrology and geochemistry of southern African off-craton peridotite mantle xenoliths to extend the record of southern African continental evolution into the Proterozoic and to better understand the geochemical differences between Archaean and Proterozoic lithospheric mantle.

              •Studies of the interaction between the continental lithospheric mantle and melts and fluids through the analysis of megacrysts and metasomatic xenoliths in kimberlites.

Latest Publications

Ogungbuyi, P.I., Janney, P. E. and Harris, C. (submitted 2021) Carbonatite, aillikite, melilitite and trachyte from Zandkopsdrift, Namaqualand, South Africa: Constraints on the origin of an unusual lamprophyre-dominated carbonatite complex and the nature and age of its mantle source. Lithos.

Nkere, B. J., Janney, P. E., & Tinguely, C. (2021). Cr-poor and Cr-rich clinopyroxene and garnet megacrysts from southern African Group 1 and Group 2 kimberlites: Clues to megacryst origins and their relationship to kimberlites. Lithos396, 106231.

Lyaya, E. C., Chirikure, S., Janney, P. E., & Rehren, T. (2020). A Technology of Multiple Smelting Furnaces per Termite Mound: Iron Production in Chongwe, Lusaka, Zambia. Journal of African Archaeology18(1), 67-85.

Stenvall, C. A., Fagereng, A., Diener, J. F. A., Harris, C., & Janney, P. E. (2020). Sources and Effects of Fluids in Continental Retrograde Shear Zones: Insights from the Kuckaus Mylonite Zone, Namibia. Geofluids.

Pearson, D. G., Woodhead, J., & Janney, P.E. (2019). Kimberlites as geochemical probes of Earth’s mantle. Elements: An International Magazine of Mineralogy, Geochemistry, and Petrology 15, 387-392.

Nkere, B. J., Griffin, W. L., & Janney, P.E. (2019). Emplacement age of the Tshibwe Kimberlite, Democratic Republic of Congo, by in-situ LAM-ICPMS U/Pb dating of groundmass perovskite. Journal of African Earth Sciences 157, 103502.

Fitzpayne, A., Giuliani, A., Maas, R., Hergt, J., Janney, P., & Phillips, D. (2019). Progressive metasomatism of the mantle by kimberlite melts: Sr–Nd–Hf–Pb isotope compositions of MARID and PIC minerals. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 509, 15-26.

Fitzpayne, A., Giuliani, A., Hergt, J., Phillips, D., Janney, P. (2018). New geochemical constraints on the origins of MARID and PIC rocks: Implications for mantle metasomatism and mantle-derived potassic magmatism. Lithos 318, 478-493.

Williams, C. D., Ushikubo, T., Janney, P.E., Kita, N.T., Hervig, R.L., Bullock, E.S., Hines, R.R., MacPherson, G. J., Mendybaev, R. A., Richter, F. M., Wadhwa, M. (2017) Thermal and chemical evolution of the early Solar System: Part I - Petrology, mineral chemistry, and isotopic composition of Allende FUN CAI CMS-1, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 201, 25-48.

Williams, C.D., Janney P.E., Hines, R.R., Wadhwa M. (2016) Precise titanium isotope compositions of refractory inclusions in the Allende CV3 chondrite by LA-MC-ICPMS, Chemical Geology 436, 1-10.

Wainwright, A.N., Luguet, A., Schreiber, A., Fonseca, R.O.C., Nowell, G.M., Lorand, J.-P., Wirth, R., Janney, P.E. (2016) Nanoscale variations in 187Os isotopic composition and HSE systematics in a Bultfontein peridotite, Earth and Planetary Science Letters 447, 60-71

Davis, A.M., Richter, F.M., Mendybaev, R.A., Janney, P.E., Wadhwa, M., McKeegan, K.D. (2015) Isotopic mass fractionation laws for magnesium and their effects on 26Al-26Mg systematics in solar system materials, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 158, 245-261.

Day, J.M.D., Peters, B.J., Janney, P.E. (2014) Oxygen isotope systematics of South African olivine melilitites and  implications for HIMU mantle reservoirs, Lithos 202, 76-84.

Mendybaev, R.A., Richter, F.M., Georg, R.B., Janney, P.E., Spicuzza, M.J., Davis, A.M., Valley, J.W. (2013) Experimental evaporation of Mg- and Si-rich melts: Implications for the origin and evolution of FUN CAIs. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 123, 368-384.

Janney, P. E., Richter, F. M., Mendybaev, R. A., Wadhwa, M., Georg, R. B., Watson, E. B. & Hines, R. R. (2011) Matrix effects in the analysis of Mg and Si isotope ratios in natural and synthetic glasses by laser ablation-multicollector ICPMS: A comparison of single- and double-focusing mass spectrometers. Chemical Geology 281, 26-40.



  • PhD University of California, San Diego-Scripps Institution of Oceanography, 1996
  • BSc University of New Hampshire, 1988


  • Head of Department, Department of Geological Sciences, 2021-present
  • Associate Professor, University of Cape Town, Department of Geological Sciences, 2018-present
  • Senior Lecturer, University of Cape Town, Department of Geological Sciences, 2012-2017
  • Associate Research Scientist, Arizona State University, Center for Meteorite Studies, 2006-2012
  • Isotope Geochemistry Laboratory Manager, Field Museum of Natural History, 2000-2006
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Carnegie Institution of Washington-DTM, 1998-2000
  • Postdoctoral Research Geologist, UC-San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, 1997-1998
  • Postdoctoral Student, University of Cape Town, Department of Geological Sciences, 1996-1997

Professional Associations

  • American Geophysical Union
  • Geochemical Society
  • Meteoritical Society
  • Geological Society of South Africa