Dr Sami Mikhail

Dr Sami Mikhail
Senior Lecturer; Dissertation Co-ordinator


The motivation for my research is to understand how the interior of a planet affects and controls the composition of its surface, and how volcanic degassing relates to long-term habitability.

In short, I want to understand the pathways followed by volatile elements subducted into Earth’s mantle over geological timescales, with a strong emphasis on constraining the origin(s) of diamond-forming carbon in the mantle, and the nature of the tectonic volatile cycle(s).

I also work towards understanding the formation and deep-time evolution of extra-terrestrial planetary atmospheres, such as those around Venus and Mars.

source: symbiosis


Recent publications

16  (of 16 published available) for sm342. (source: University of St Andrews PURE)
Please click title of any item for full details.

2018 (1/10)
Geochemical Perspectives Letters
vol.8 pp.26-30
Plume-lithosphere interaction, and the formation of fibrous diamonds
Michael Broadley, H Kagi, Ray Burgess, D Zedgenizov, Sami Mikhail, M Almayrac, A Ragozin, B Pomazansky, H Sumino 
Keywords: Diamond formation, Mantle plume, Halogens, Lithosphere, Subduction, Noble gas
2017 (7)
Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors
vol.268 pp.18-34
Hot climate inhibits volcanism on Venus
Sami Mikhail, Michael Heap 
2017 (1/1)
vol.281 pp.103-114
2017 (5)
vol.15 pp.343-352
The geobiological nitrogen cycle
Aubrey Lea Zerkle, Sami Mikhail 
2017 (15/7)
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
vol.209 pp.149-160
The relationship between mantle pH and the deep nitrogen cycle
Sami Mikhail, Peter Barry, Dimitri Sverjensky 
2016 (1/4)
American Mineralogist
vol.101 pp.780-787
2016 (15/11)
vol.265 pp.82-95
Diamonds from Dachine, French Guiana
Chris B. Smith, Michael J. Walter, Galina P. Bulanova, Sami Mikhail, Antony D. Burnham, Luiz Gobbo, Simon C. Kohn 
Keywords: Dachine, Diamond, Inclusions, Subduction, Isotopes
2015 (1/10)
American Mineralogist
vol.100 pp.1790-1802
Experimental investigation of F, Cl, and OH partitioning between apatite and Fe-rich basaltic melt at 1.0-1.2 GPa and 950-1000 °C
Francis McCubbin, Kathleen Vander Kaaden, Romain Tartèse, Jeremy Boyce, Sami Mikhail, Eric Whitson, Aaron Bell, Mahesh Anand, Ian Franchi, Jianhua Wang, Erik Hauri 
Keywords: Lunar water, Water on Mars, QUE 94201, Phosphates, Piston Cylinder
2015 (15/5)
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
vol.157 pp.1-12
Nitrogen isotope systematics and origins of mixed-habit diamonds
Daniel Howell, Richard Stern, William Griffin, Rebecca Southworth, Sami Mikhail, Thomas Stachel 
2014 (1/1)
A synthesis of instrumental analytical techniques for examination of the thermal history of pallasite meteorites
Katherine L. Crispin, Sami Mikhail, Anat Shahar, Valerie Hillgren, Neil Bennett, Neva Fowler-Gerace, Richard Ash, William F. McDonough 
Keywords: Instrumentation
2014 (14/8)
Chemical Geology
vol.381 pp.40-54
An eclogitic diamond from Mir pipe (Yakutia), recording two growth events from different isotopic sources
Galina Bulanova, Daphne Wiggers de Vries, D Graham Pearson, Andrew Beard, Sami Mikhail, Alexander Smelov, Gareth Davies 
2014 (14/2)
Chemical Geology
vol.366 pp.14-23
Constraining the internal variability of the stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen within mantle diamonds
Sami Mikhail, Alexander Verchovsky, Daniel Howell, Mark Hutchison, Rebecca Southworth, Andrew Thomson, Pierre Warburton, Adrian Jones, H Judith Milledge 
2014 (22/5)
Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems
vol.15 pp.855–866
Empirical evidence for the fractionation of carbon isotopes between diamond and iron carbide from the Earth’s mantle
Sami Mikhail, Christalle Guillermier, Ian Franchi, Andrew Beard, Catherine Krispin, Alexander Verchovsky, Adrian Jones, H Judith Milledge 
Keywords: Carbon isotope fractionation, Deep carbon cycle, Diamond, Iron carbide
2014 (1/9)
American Mineralogist
vol.99 pp.1537-1543
Evidence for multiple diamondite-forming events in the mantle
Sami Mikhail, Frances McCubbin, Daniel Howell 
2014 (11)
Nature Geoscience
vol.7 pp.816-819
2013 (8/1)
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
vol.107 pp.1-11

Contact Details:

Dr Sami Mikhail
Irvine Building
University of St Andrews
North Street
St Andrews
KY16 9AL

tel: 01334 463915
room: 425
email: sm342@st-andrews.ac.uk


Personal Website
Centre for Magnetic Resonance
School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Centre for Exoplanet Science

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