Dr. Ryan Ickert

Dr. Ryan Ickert


My Google Scholar


I grew up in Edmonton, Alberta, and did my B.Sc. in Geology at my hometown institution, the University of Alberta.  My fourth year honours project was supervised by Octavian Catuneanu,Picture of Ryan Ickert and focussed on the stratigraphy and sedimentology of the Paleoproterozoic Fair Point Formation in northern Alberta.

I decided that sediments weren’t quite right for me, and then started graduate school at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby BC (greater Vancouver area) where I did a M.Sc. with Derek Thorkelson.  Derek had me work on a package of Eocene volcanic rocks in south-central BC, that resulted in a great project and a paper that incorporated a bit of everything: field work, geochronology, isotope geochemistry, igneous petrology, and tectonics.

For my PhD, I wanted do pursue an analytical track in isotope geochemistry.  I moved to Australia to work in the SHRIMP group at the Research School of Earth Sciences in the Australian National University.  Apparently my original PhD webpage is still up.  Under my advisor, Ian “think like an ion beam” Williams, I learned about the secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) technique, and used it to date zircon with the U-Pb method, and to measure oxygen isotope ratios in insulators.  I was lucky to be there at the end of the development cycle for the oxygen isotope technique, and so Joe Hiess and I led the writing of the paper describing the technique.  I spent my Phd studying the origin of granites in the classic S-type/I-type locality in southeastern Australia, using O-Hf isotope systematics and U-Pb geochronology in zircon.  I also dabbled in Ti-in-zircon thermometry.

After my PhD I moved back to Canada to take up a Killam Postdoctoral Fellowship in the (then) new SIMS lab at the University of Alberta.  Inclusion in diamondWhile there I worked with Thomas Stachel and Richard Stern and wrote or co-authored a number of papers involving oxygen isotopes of inclusions in diamond and other mantle materials.

The cold winters took their toll, so I moved from Alberta to Berkeley, California to work with Roland Mundil and Paul Renne at the Berkeley Geochronology Center, as an Anne and Gordon Getty Postdoctoral Fellow.  There I worked on a range of projects.  I learned how to do ID-TIMS U-Pb geochronology and looked the U-Th-Pb systematics of some young volcanic rocks in eastern California.  I also learned a bit of laser ablation Pb, and along with Courtney Sprain and Sean Mulcahy used the Pb isotope composition of volcanic feldspars to trace individual ash beds across eastern Montana to better constrain the K-Pg boundary in the area.  As a diversion, my officemate Matt Fox and I wrote a super fun (but terribly under-cited) paper applying reversible jump MCMC to MC-ICPMS data reduction.

From Berkeley, I took a permanent position as a “lecturer” at the Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre (SUERC).  (The position title is confusing, because I did no teaching.  The closest US-CAN equivalent is assistant professor).  While there I was the academic head of the radiogenic isotope lab and built a U-Pb ID-TIMS facility.  The SUERC lab introduced me to a wider range of applications of radiogenic isotopes, including archeological and forensic materials (e.g., Sr isotopes in teeth, Pb isotopes in metal artifacts) and basalt isotope geochemistry.

Me at Purdue:

Since Autumn of 2019, I’ve been a Senior Research Scientist (and funding permitting, Research Faculty) at Purdue University.  This means that I do not have a faculty position (e.g., I’m not a professor) and don’t have teaching responsibilities, but can PI (and co-PI) proposals and supervise graduate students.

Positions Held

2019 – present          Senior Research Scientist & Research Faculty, Purdue University

2015-2019                   Lecturer (UK Assistant Professor equivalent), Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre

2012-2015                   Postdoctoral Fellow, Berkeley Geochronology Center and UC Berkeley

2009-2012                   Postdoctoral Fellow, Canadian Centre for Isotopic Microanalysis, University of Alberta


PhD (2010)       Research School of Earth Sciences, The Australian National University.  Advisor: Ian S. Williams

MSc (2006)      Department of Earth Sciences, Simon Fraser University.  Advisor: Derek J. Thorkelson

BSc (2003)       Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Alberta.  Advisor: Octavian Catuneanu


Villa I.M., Holden N.E., Possolo A., Ickert R.B., Hibbert B., Renne P.R. in revision.  IUPAC-IUGS recommendation on the half-lives of 147Sm and 146Sm.  Geochimica et Cosmochimca Acta.

Tulan E., Sachsenhofer R.F., Tari G., Flecker R., Fairbank V., Pupp M., Ickert R.B., 2019.  Source rock potential and depositional environment of the Lower Oligocene Ihsaniye Formation in NW Turkey (Thrace, Karaburun).  Turkish Journal of Earth Sciences.  v.28, 21pg.  http://dx.doi.org/10.3906/yer-1906-14

Casetta F., Ickert R.B., Mark D.F., Bonadiman C., Giacomoni P.P., Coltorti M., 2019.  The alkaline lamprophyres of the Dolomitic Area (Southern Alps, Italy): markers of the Late Triassic change from orogenic-like to anorogenic magmatism.  Journal of Petrology, v.60, p. 1263-1298. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/petrology/egz031

Regier M., Mišković A., Ickert R.B., Pearson G.D., Stachel T., Stern R.A., Kopylova M.  2018An oxygen isotope test for the origin of Archean mantle roots.  Geochemical Perspectives Letters, v.9, p.6-10.  http://dx.doi.org/10.7185/geochemlet.1830

Casetta F., Coltorti M., Ickert R.B., Bonadiman C., Giacomoni P.P., Ntaflos T., 2018Intrusion of shoshonitic magmas at shallow crustal depth: T-P path, H2O estimates and AFC modelling of the Middle Triassic Predazzo Intrusive Complex (Southern Alps, Italy).  Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, v.173, 27pg.   https://doi.org/10.1007/s00410-018-1483-0

Riches A.J.V., Ickert R.B., Pearson D.G., Stern R.A., Jackson S.A., Ishikawa A., Kjarsgaard B.A., Gurney J.J., 2016. In situ oxygen-isotope, major-, and trace-element constraints on the metasomatic modification and crustal origin of a diamondiferous eclogites from Roberts Victor, Kaapvaal Craton.  Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta v.174, p. 345-359.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gca.2015.11.028

Fox M., Ickert R.B., 2015. Model selection during sample-standard-bracketing using reversible jump Markov chain Monte Carlo.  Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry v.30, p. 2208-2213.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/c5ja00102a

Ickert R.B., Mulcahy S.R., Sprain C.J., Manaszak J.F., Renne P.R., 2015. Chemical and Pb isotope composition of phenocrysts from bentonites constrains the chronostratigraphy around the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary in the Hell Creek region, Montana.  Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems v.16, p. 2743-2761. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/2015GC005898

Ickert R.B., Stachel T., Stern R.A., Harris J.W., 2015. Extreme 18O-enrichement in majorite constrains a crustal origin of transition zone diamonds.  Geochemical Perspectives Letters v.1, p. 65-74.  http://dx.doi.org/10.7185/geochemlet.1507

Ickert R.B., Mundil R., Magee C.W., Mulcahy S.R., 2015. The U-Th-Pb systematics of zircon from the Bishop Tuff: A case study in the challenges to high-precision Pb/U geochronology at the millennial scale.  Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta v.168, p. 88-110. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gca.2015.07.018

Smit, K.V., Stachel, T., Creaser, R.A., Ickert, R.B., DuFrane, S.A., Stern, R.A., Seller, M. 2014.  Origin of eclogite and pyroxenite xenoliths from the Victor kimberlite, Canada, and implications for Superior craton formation.  Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta v.125, p. 308-337. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gca.2013.10.019

Ickert R.B., Stern R.A. 2013. Matrix corrections and error analysis in high-precision SIMS 18O/16O measurements of Ca-Mg-Fe garnet. Geostandards and Geoanalytical Research. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-908X.2013.00222.x

Ickert, R.B., Stachel, T., Stern R.A., Harris, J.W., 2013.  Diamond from recycled crustal carbon documented by coupled δ18O- δ13C measurements of diamonds and their inclusions.  Earth and Planetary Science Letters v.364, p. 85-97. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2013.01.008

Ickert, R.B. 2013.  Algorithms for estimating uncertainties in initial radiogenic isotope ratios and model ages.  Chemical Geology v.340, p 131-138.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemgeo.2013.01.001

Park, J.-W., Campbell, I.H., Ickert, R.B., Allen, C.M., 2012.  Chalcophile element geochemistry of the Boggy Plain zoned pluton, southeastern Australia: a S-saturated barren compositionally diverse magmatic system.  Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, v.165(2), 217-236http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00410-012-0806-9

Smart, K.A., Chacko, T., Stachel, T., Tappe, S., Stern, R.A., Ickert, R.B., EIMF, 2012.  Eclogite formation beneath the northern Slave craton constrained by diamond inclusions: Oceanic lithosphere origin without a crustal signature.  Earth and Planetary Science Letters v.319-320, p. 319-320.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2011.12.032

Ickert R.B., Williams I.S, 2011.  U- Pb Zircon Geochronology of Siluro-Devonian Granites in Southeastern Australia: Implications for the Timing of the Benambran Orogeny and the I-S Dichotomy.  Australian Journal of Earth Sciences, v.58(5), p. 501-516.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08120099.2011.562922

Ickert R.B., Williams I.S., Wyborn D, 2011.  Ti in Zircon from the Boggy Plain Zoned Pluton; Implications for Zircon Petrology and Hadean Tectonics.  Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology.  v.162(2), p. 447-461. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00410-010-0605-0

Ickert R.B., Thorkelson D.J., Marshall D.D., Ullrich T.D., 2009.  Eocene adakitic volcanism in southern British Columbia: Remelting of arc basalt above a slab window.  Tectonophysics, v.464(1-4), p. 164-185. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tecto.2007.10.007.

Ickert R.B., Hiess J., Williams I.S., Holden P., Ireland T.R., Lanc P., Schram N., Foster J.J., Clement S.W., 2008.  Determining high precision in situ, oxygen isotope ratios with a SHRIMP II: Analyses of MPI-DING silicate-glass reference materials and zircon from contrasting granites.  Chemical Geology, v.257(1-2), p. 114-128. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemgeo.2008.08.024.

Yeo G.M., Percival J.B., Jefferson C.W., Ickert R., and Hunt P., 2007.  Environmental significance of oncoids and crypto-microbial laminites from the Late Paleoproterozoic Athabasca Group, Saskatchewan and Alberta; in EXTECH IV: Athabasca Uranium Multidisciplinary Study, Saskatchewan and Alberta, (ed.) C.W. Jefferson and G. Delaney; Geological Survey of Canada, Bulletin 588, p. 315-323. http://geoscan.nrcan.gc.ca/starweb/geoscan/servlet.starweb?path=geoscan/shorte.web&search1=R=223777