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Earth sciences

The scale of Earth Sciences research activity at Ferrara is substantial, committing to disciplinary  excellence and interdisciplinary research that will benefit society on a national and global scale.


The Earth Sciences are the focus of scientific understanding about this and other planets, embracing  an enormous range of topics, including

  • palaeobiology and micropalaeontology of Phanerozoic  marine ecosystems and evolutionary palaeoecology;
  • analyses of sediments, sedimentation processes and stratal relationships in Phanerozoic mixed terrigenous-carbonate systems with attention to the  factors controlling the depositional architecture and facies distribution;
  • earthquake geology, seismogenic sources and their seismotectonic characterization, 4D tectonic reconstructions at different scales, seismic hazard estimates for risk mitigation;
  • collection and study of distribution of specific physical properties to assess site response to earthquakes, evaluation of quality of groundwater and soils, archeological surveys;
  • study of coastal processes and their consequences on society, including the study of coastal changes, coastal erosion processes and coastal hazards; morphodynamics of continental environments;
  • applied mineralogy topics include investigation of geomaterials and their likes for energy harvesting and storage, treatment of water resources, development of sustainable Nature-inspired ceramics and functional materials;
  • environmental geochemistry for elements and isotopes in sediments, soils, water, air, to highlight environmental changes, effects of human activities on ecosystems, and to plan sustainable exploitation of geo-resources;
  • genesis, chemo-physical modeling and thermo-barometric of basic magmas;
  • petrology of Earth’s mantle studying xenoliths and alpine peridotites;
  • petrology and geodynamic setting of ophiolitic complexes;
  • hydrogeological hazard and environmental problems focusing on slope stability, Deep Seated Gravitational Slope Deformations studies and forecasting models of the failure and run-out of large rock slides