Dr Jennifer Dawn Eccles

BSc, Geology and Applied Geophysics, The University of Auckland; MSc, Geology, The University of Auckland; PhD, Seismology, University of Cambridge

Profile Image
Senior Lecturer

Research | Current

The main theme connecting Jennifer Eccles’ research has been using slightly unconventional approaches to investigate the geological structure and tectonics of areas which have proved intractable to conventional approaches. This has included the aeromagnetic investigation the structure of the basement beneath the Auckland Urban Area and Auckland Volcanic Field to understand the accretionary tectonics that formed it during the Mesozoic. Other research has included the seismic 'sub-basalt imaging problem' in the North Atlantic i.e. the successful use of low frequency and long offset seismic techniques in a region of high attenuation and scattering. Converted shear wave phases were specifically used to gain extra constraint on margin structure and hence continental breakup processes. Ongoing projects include marine geophysics looking at the Kermadec Arc/Backarc region and research, funded by a Fast Start Marsden Fund grant, on New Zealand’s Alpine Fault in association with an ongoing ICDP initiative (http://www.icdp-online.org/front_content.php?idcat=1281). This research has utilized boreholes drilled as part of the broader collaboration; installing borehole seismometers and carrying out a high resolution active source seismic and larger scale Fault Zone Guided Wave experiments. New projects include investigation of the Hauraki Rift and tectonics of the upper North Island and a borehole experiment in Antartic sea ice.

Teaching | Current

I'm on Research and Study Leave in 2019 and am not teaching but would normally be involved with:


EarthSci 714: Earthquake Geology (not offered in 2019)

EarthSci 305: Earth Deformation

Contributing to:

EarthSci and Geophys 361: Exploration Geophysics

Geophys 762: Subsurface Characterization with Potential Field Methods





Postgraduate supervision

Funded MSc Research Opportunities 2019/20: Auckland Faulting

Two $15,000 MSc scholarships will be available to ground truth previously mapped or hypothesised faulting highlighted in the initial project by:

  1. Structurally mapping Auckland’s West Coast.
  2. Structurally mapping Auckland’s East Coast

For more information contact Jennifer Eccles j.eccles@auckland.ac.nz. Julie Rowland, Jon Tunnicliffe and Martin Brook will also be involved in the supervision of these projects as appropriate. Entry to a research MSc requires BSc(Hons), PGDipSci or equivalent and the level of funding available is most appropriate to support candidates from New Zealand and Australia. International candidates please refer to https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/study/fees-and-money-matters/tuition-fees/postgraduate-international-fees.html for more information on the costs involved.

In Progress

Zaid Al-Jawadi, Masters of Engineering Geology Project. Potential Seismic Sources within the Auckland Region

William Reid, MSc Project. Geophysical Investigation of Auckland Faulting

Zaid Rana, MSc Project. Dynamic Site Characterisation of the Hauraki Plains. Co-supervised with Liam Wotherspoon (Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Auckland)

Franz Lutz, PhD Project: Seismic structure and behaviour of the Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctica. Co-supervised by Dave Prior (University of Otago).


Robert Pickle, PhD Project: Structure and Activity of the Hauraki Rift, New Zealand. Co-supervised by Julie Rowland and Sigrun Hreinsdottir (GNS Science)

Ben Simons, PhD Project: Understanding the processes involved in the de-gassing of steady-state volcanoes. Primary Supervisor Shane Cronin.

Engdawork Admassu Bahiru, PhD Project: Structural and tectonic controls on epithermal Au-Ag mineralisation, southern Coromandel Volcanic Zone: insights from joint geological-geophysical interpretation and 3D stress
modelling. Primary Supervisor Julie Rowland.



2018. William Reid BSc Hons Project. Resolving ambiguity in the rift initiation of the Hauraki Rift: A Gravity Investigation of the Kerepehi Fault

2017. Dylan McGall, BSc Hons Project: Velocity Structure of the McMurdo Ice Shelf, Antarctica

2017. Ashleigh Fromont, MSc Project: A Seismic Investigation of the evolution and structure of the Kerepehi Fault, in the context of the Hauraki Rift, New Zealand.Co-supervised by Don Lawton (University of Calgary) and Julie Rowland.

2017. Caleb Gasston, MSc Project: Hidden Hazards: Buried Faults Beneath the Auckland Isthmus. Co-supervised with Jan Lindsay and Martin Brook.

2017. Anton Gulley, PhD. Computational approaches for estimating fault-zone properties using trapped waves. Primary Supervisor Jari Kaipio (Department of Mathematics).

2016. Xamyse Thompson, BSc Hons Project: Block Faulting in northern New Zealand

2016. Kuanjin Lee, MSc Project: Seismic characterization of Auckland CBD reclaimed soils. Co-supervised by Liam Wotherspoon (Department of Civil and Engineering) and Simon Nelis

2015. Ashleigh Fromont, BSc Hons. Aeromagnetic Data Modelling of the Paeroa Fault and Te Kopia Geothermal Field.

2015. Josh Wild, MSc Project: Seismic velocities beneath creeping gas hydrate slides - analysis of ocean bottom seismometer data. Primary Supervisor Ingo Pecher

2015. Joel MacMahon, MSc Project: Identifying Gas hydrates in the Tuaheni Landslide Complex with high resolution velocity analysis and the effect these gas hydrates have on submarine slide stability. Primary Supervisor Ingo Pecher

2014. Leena Khong, MSc Project: Seismic Analysis of the Rumble II East and West Seamounts, Kermedec Arc, New Zealand. Co-supervised by Ingo Pecher and Geoffroy Lamarche (NIWA)

2014. Tabitha Bushell, MSc Project: Patterns of cumulative and incremental fault growth in a magmatic continental rift; Manda-Hararo Rift, Afar, Ethiopia. Primary Supervisor Julie Rowland

2014. Jack Blunden, BSc Hons Project: Seismic Hazard of the Waikato Fault. Co-supervised by Jan Lindsay.

2013 Joel MacMahon, BSc Hons. A study of the effects of variations in sensor setup for a magnetotelluric sounding. Co-supervised by Graham Ryan (IESE)

2013. Vipal Govind, BSc Hons. The Puhinui Craters: Gravity and Magnetic Surveying of newly discovered volcanic centres within the Auckland Volcanic Field

2013. Alex Rasidin, BSc Hons. High Resolution Seismic Reflection Profiling of the Alpine Fault at Gaunt Creek.

2012 Kate Sheil, MSc, Structural and statistical analysis of the Dabbahu rift (Afar, Ethiopia) using multiple datasets of remote imagery. Primary supervisor J. Rowland

Committees/Professional groups/Services

President and Auckland Branch Representative of the Geoscience Society of New Zealand



Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Bahiru, E. A., Rowland, J. V., Eccles, J. D., & Kellett, R. L. (2019). Regional crustal-scale structural control on epithermal deposits within the Hauraki Goldfield, Coromandel Volcanic Zone, New Zealand: insight from integrated geological and aeromagnetic structural patterns. NEW ZEALAND JOURNAL OF GEOLOGY AND GEOPHYSICS, 62 (4), 461-482. 10.1080/00288306.2019.1574268
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Julie Rowland
  • Townend, J., Sutherland, R., Toy, V., Doan, M.-L., Célérier B, Massiot, C., ... Remaud, L. (2017). Petrophysical, geochemical, and hydrological evidence for extensive fracture-mediated fluid and heat transport in the Alpine Fault's hanging-wall damage zone. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 18 (12), 4709-4732. 10.1002/2017GC007202
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Virginia Toy
  • Chamberlain, C. J., Boese, C. M., Eccles, J. D., Savage, M. K., Baratin, L.-M., Townend, J., ... Taylor-Offord, S. (2017). Real-time earthquake monitoring during the second phase of the deep fault drilling project, Alpine Fault, New Zealand. Seismological Research Letters, 88 (6), 1443-1454. 10.1785/0220170095
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Virginia Toy
  • Gulley, A. K., Eccles, J. D., Kaipio, J. P., & Malin, P. E. (2017). The effect of gradational velocities and anisotropy on fault-zone trapped waves. Geophysical Journal International, 210 (2), 964-978. 10.1093/gji/ggx200
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Jari Kaipio
  • Gulley, A. K., Kaipio, J. P., Eccles, J. D., & Malin, P. E. (2017). A numerical approach for modelling fault-zone trapped waves. Geophysical Journal International, 210 (2), 919-930. 10.1093/gji/ggx199
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Jari Kaipio
  • Sutherland, R., Townend, J., Toy, V., Upton, P., Coussens, J., Allen, M., ... Boese, C. (2017). Extreme hydrothermal conditions at an active plate-bounding fault. Nature, 546 (7656), 137-140. 10.1038/nature22355
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Neil Broderick, Virginia Toy
  • Guo, B., Thurber, C. H., Roecker, S. W., Townend, J., Rawles, C., Chamberlain, C. J., ... Eccles, J. D. (2017). 3-D P- and S-wave velocity structure along the central Alpine Fault, South Island, New Zealand. Geophysical Journal International, 209 (2), 935-947. 10.1093/gji/ggx059
  • Toy, V., Sutherland, R., Townend, J., Allen, M., Becroft, L., Boles, A., ... Cox, S. (2017). Bedrock geology of DFDP-2B, central Alpine Fault, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics, 60 (4), 497-518. 10.1080/00288306.2017.1375533
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Virginia Toy


Contact details

Primary office location

SCIENCE CENTRE 302 - Bldg 302
Level 7, Room 735
New Zealand

Web links