Dr Cathy Hollis

Dr Cathy Hollis


Cathy is Reader in Petrophysics & Petroleum Geology at University of Manchester since 2007. She leads the carbonate research theme within the Basin Studies and Petroleum Geoscience Group in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences and is course director for the BEng and MEng degrees in Petroleum Engineering. Cathy is currently supervising 6 PhD students and a post-doctoral researcher, whose research projects focus on reconstruction of patterns of burial diagenesis within the Lower Carboniferous, UK and Cretaceous-Eocene of North Africa and the Arabian Plate.

Particular emphasis is on the integration of multi-scale, digital imaging technologies and modelling techniques with traditional field, petrographical and geochemical techniques to determine the origin, composition and migration pathways of fluids in the burial realm, and particularly within syn- and post-rift settings. Cathy has over 15 years' industrial experience, having worked as a consultant carbonate sedimentologist for Badley Ashton and Associates

Dr Stefan Schroeder

Dr Stefan Schroeder


Stefan joined the University of Manchester as Lecturer in September 2011. His background is in carbonate sedimentology and diagenesis, with a focus on integration of data from regional, outcrop, subsurface, and laboratory studies. He is particularly interested in the use of outcrop analogs and modern depositional systems to characterize carbonate reservoir heterogeneities, as well as in Precambrian depositional systems.

He has earned a PhD in geology from the University of Bern (Switzerland), working on the characterization of dolomite reservoirs. This was followed by postdoctoral research projects on Precambrian carbonates at MIT (USA) and the University of Johannesburg (South Africa).

From 2007 to 2011, Stefan worked as a carbonate and subsurface geologist for Total SA, where he was involved in reservoir studies, regional exploration studies and research applied to reservoir characterization. He has worked on depositional systems from southern Africa to Mauritania, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, and eastern Asia.

Stefan’s current research interests are:

  • Controls on carbonate deposition and reservoir development in active rift and compressive basins and in evaporite basins;
  • Formation of microbial carbonates, their reservoir potential, and their record of life;
  • Precambrian depositional systems as records of the early evolution of life and Earth surface environments.

Current PhD students

Michael Lacey, 2015- NERC-CDT (Oil & Gas) funded PhD 'Fluid Flow in Carbonate Rocks'. Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis (SEAES) and co-supervised by Dr Nima Shokri (CEAS).

Lucy Manifold, 2015 - PD3 Consortium sponsored PhD 'Sedimentological and diagenetic characterisation of Mississippian and Pennsylvanian carbonate platforms'. Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis.

Catherine Breislin, 2014- NERC PhD CASE award with BGS. ‘Basin-scale mineral and fluid processes at a palaeo-platform margin, Lower Carboniferous, UK’.

Peter del Strother, 2014- self funded, part time PhD ‘Platform dynamics and diagenetic modification on a land-attached carbonate platform, Lower Carboniferous, North Wales.’

Sayeed Behbahani, 2014- KOC funded PhD studentship. Controls on petrophysical properties of the Mauddud Formation, Bahra and Sabriyah Fields, Kuwait.  Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis

Salem Al Hammami, 2014- Seismic interpretation of the Mesozoic of the UAE. Supervised by Dr Mads Huuse and Dr Cathy Hollis

Nathan Rochelle-Bates, 2014- NERC-CDT (Oil & Gas) funded PhD ‘Regional tectonostratigraphy of the pre-salt in the Benguela-Namibe Basins, Angola’ Supervised by Dr Stefan Schroeder and Dr Mads Huuse

Aurelien Gabriel Mayer, 2013 -Maersk Qatar funded PhD ‘Porosity modification of the Shuaiba Formation, Al Shaheen Field, offshoree Qatar’ Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis and Prof Kevin Taylor

Jonathan Lavi, 2013 -BP Funded PhD ‘Improving Interpretation of Seismic Data with Next-Generation Carbonate Seismic Stratigraphy: Analogues for Cenomanian-Turonian shallow marine platform systems’ Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis and Dr Stefan Schroeder

Matthew Warke, 2013- NERC funded PhD ‘Stratigraphic and geochemical framework of the Paleoproterozoic rise in atmospheric oxygen: Transvaal Supergroup (South Africa)’ Supervised by Dr Stefan Schroeder and Prof Kevin Taylor

Aisha Al Hajri, 2009 -PDO-funded PhD ‘Timing of porosity generation at the Shuaiba/Nahr Umr boundary’. Lead supervisor. Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis and Dr Mads Huuse

Postdoctoral Research Associates

Dr Ana Berreteaga. Large scale dolomitisation of Palaeocene platform carbonates from the Western Pyrenean Basin: facies, distribution, qualitative-quantitative genetic models and applications to the characterisation of dolomite-hosted hydrocarbon reservoirs.  Joint post-doctoral research fellowship with Dpt. Stratigraphy anfd Paleontology, University of the Basque Country, Bilbao, Spain.

Graduated PhD Students

Dr Ibraihm Al Rajaibi, 2007-2011, PhD. ‘Origin and distribution of Athel Silicilyte and comparison with Monterey Formation’. Supervised by Dr Joe McQuaker and Dr Cathy Hollis.

Dr Said Al Balushi, 2007-2011 ‘Discussions on the fundamental controls of lithofacies variability and organic matter preservation in a clastic-starved intrashelf depositional basin: a multi-proxy study of the Natih B Member (Middle Cretaceous, Oman)’.  Supervised by Dr Joe McQuaker and Dr Cathy Hollis.

Dr Miles Frazer, 2010, NERC CASE award with Chevron, PhD ‘Reconstruction of burial diagenetic processes in a post-rift regime’ Joint project with University of Bristol. Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis and Dr Fiona Whitaker (University of Bristol). Currently employed by Chevron Technology Company. 

Dr Jesal Hirani, 2010- Consortium funded PhD (Total, BG-Group, Saudi Aramco) ‘Diagenetic evaluation of fault/fracture related dolomitisation, Cretaceous-Eocene, Hammam Fauran Fault Block, Gulf of Suez’ Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis and Dr David Hodgetts. Currently employed by Badley Ashton.

Dr Alanna Juerges, 2008-2012, NERC CASE award with Shell, PhD. ‘Reconstructing the burial history of fractured carbonate systems using the Lower Carboniferous of the UK and Europe’. Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis and Dr David Hodgetts. Currently employed by Shell International Exploration and Production.

Dr Richard Newport, 2010-, North Africa Research Group funded PhD, ‘Dolomitisation of Cenomanian-Turonian Carbonates, North Africa and Western Mediterranean’. Supervised by Dr Cathy Hollis and Prof Jonathan Redfern. Currently employed by Shell International Exploration and Production.

Dr Alex Sharples, 2010- ‘Tectono-Stratigraphic Evolution of the South Australian Margin:  Sediment-rich to sediment-starved passive margin evolution and implications for hydrocarbon systems’. Supervised by Dr Mads Huuse and Dr Cathy Hollis.

Dr Charlotte Winterbottom, 2009- ‘Depth-related depositional fabrics of a progressively drowned carbonate platform, Hawaii’. NERC CASE award with BG-Group. Supervised by Prof Kevin Taylor and Dr Cathy Hollis. Currently employed by Weatherford, UAE.

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