About me

Full-time professor at the Free University of Brussels, Belgium

Department of Earth Sciences and Environment Biogeochemistry and Earth System Laboratory 

Faculty of Sciences

Biosedimentology, Cyclostratigraphy, Geochemistry, Carbonates, Microfacies, Algae, Microbes, Diagenesis, Reefs/Platforms/Ramps, Geodynamics. 

Precambrian [Gabon, Congo RDC and Congo RC]
Paleozoic [Devonian-Carboniferous] and  Mesozoic [Jurassic-Cretaceous], Europe,  North Africa, Angola, North America, Patagonia (Chile)  Cenozoic (Belgium, Argentine)
Recent [Papua New Guinea, Jamaica] 
Oil geology [Congo RDC, Iraq] 
Whole curriculum vitae (publications, conferences ..., here below)

     AWARD  2017 : The Van den Broeck Medal

     Why are the 'red marbles' red? 
     Contribution of biology and iron isotopes

     See also here (.pdf available)

– Alumnus, Collège des Alumni, Académie Royale de Sciences, des Lettres et des Beaux Arts de Belgique (mars 2013). http://www.academieroyale.be/cgi?usr=2a8crwkksq&lg=fr&pag=858&rec=0&frm=0&par=aybabtu&id=4471&flux=8365323

– Prof. Invited, Université de Mons-Hainaut (2010-2013)

– Prof. Coordinator and invited to the Royal Academy of Sciences of Belgium (Belgian College) (2009-2015)

– Prof. partim to the DEA (third cycle) led by the University of Lille (9 universities from 1999 to 2004) – Prof. partim at the University of Paris-Sud/Orsay, European-Socrates Agreement (1995-1998)

– Prof. partim at the University of Louvain, Convention ULB-UCL (1993-2000)

Since 2020: Editorial board of Geosciences (MDPI)
2015-2018 : Regular authors texts for the web Revue planete-info
Since 2015 : Member of Comité éditorial de la Revue Géologie de la France http://geolfrance.brgm.fr
2014-2017 : Regular author of texts for ‘la Revue Science et Pseudosciences’ http://www.pseudo-sciences.org/

Many field works (several weeks to 2 months) (Meso- and Paleozoic carbonates, Paleo- to Neoproterozoic carbonates) in Europe, USA (Nevada), Papouasia (Holocene), Jamaica (Pleistocene), North Africa (Algeria, Morrocco, Tunisia), West Africa (Gabon, DRC, Congo-Brazzaville, South Africa, Angola), Iraq… Recently : field works (3 to 5 weeks) Congo- Brazzaville 2012, 2015, 2016 (carbonate Neoproterozoic), Patagonia 2018 (Cretaceous-Tertiary), Jamaica 2018 (Pleistocene-Holocene).

Web site of my research unit

My web site ay the Free University of Brussels

Summary of my professional career from 1974 to 2016

Degree in geological sciences at the Free University of Brussels (ULB) in 1974, I went to Algeria for two years teaching mining geology at the University of Constantine. Back in Belgium I worked for two years as an expert for the EEC (European Commission), first on the prospecting of Pb and Zn in carbonate environments, then the uranium exploration in Belgium. Then Assistant at ULB, Department of Geology I got the degree of Doctor of Sciences (Geology) in 1985. My PhD thesis, devoted to the study of the Devonian carbonate sedimentology of northern France and southern Belgium, comprised a significant portion of field work whose interpretation and synthesis conducted to the establishment of model of carbonate platforms and ramps with reefal constructions. I then worked for Petrofina SA and shared a little more than two years in Angola as Director of the Research Laboratory of this oil company. The lab included 22 people (micropaleontology, sedimentology, petrophysics). My main activity was to interpret facies reservoirs from drillings in the Cretaceous, sometimes in the Tertiary. I carried out many studies for oil companies operating in this country. I returned to the ULB in 1988 as First Assistant and was appointed Professor in 1990. I carried out various missions for mining companies in Belgium and oil companies abroad and continued research, particularly through projects of the Scientific Research National Funds (FNRS).

My research still concerns sedimentology, geochemistry and diagenesis of carbonate rocks which leads me to travel many countries in Europe or outside Europe, North Africa, Papua New Guinea and the USA, to conduct field missions. Since the late 90’s, I expanded my field of research in addressing the problem of mass extinctions of organisms from the Upper Devonian series across Euramerica (from North America to Poland) and I also specialized in microbiological and geochemical analyses of ancient carbonate series developing a sustained collaboration with biologists of my university. We are at the origin of a paleoecological model based on the presence of iron-bacterial microfossils, which led me to travel many countries in Europe and North Africa. This model accounts for the red pigmentation of many marble and ornamental stones used in the world. This research also has implications on the emergence of Life from the earliest stages of formation of Earth, as well as in the field of exobiology or extraterrestrial life … More recently I invested in the study from the Precambrian series of Gabon and Congo. These works with colleagues from BRGM (Orléans) are as much about the academic side (consequences of the appearance of oxygen in the Paleoproterozoic and study of Neoproterozoic glaciations) that the potential applications in reservoir rocks and source rocks of oil (in collaboration with oil companies).

Finally I recently established a close collaboration with the Royal Institute of Natural Sciences of Belgium to study the susceptibility magnetic signal from various European Paleozoic series. All these works allowed me to gain a thorough understanding of carbonate rocks (petrology, micropaleontology, geobiology, geochemistry, sequence stratigraphy, diagenesis) as well in Precambrian (2.2 Ga and 0.6 Ga), Paleozoic (from Silurian to Carboniferous) and Mesozoic (Jurassic and Cretaceous) rocks. Recently (2010) I have established a collaboration with Iraqi Kurdistan as part of a government program to boost scientific research in this country.

My research led me to publish about 180 papers in international and national journals and presented more than 170 conference papers. I am a holder of eight courses at the ULB (5 mandatory and 3 optional), excursions and field stages, I taught at the third cycle in several French universities and led or co-managed a score of 20 Doctoral (PhD) and Post-doctoral theses and has been the promotor of more than 50 Masters theses.


 Occupied positions

2016-today Honorary Professor at the Free University of Brussels

2000-2016 Full-time Professor at the Free University of Brussels

1990-1999 Full time Lecturer at the Free University of Brussels

1988-1989 First Assistant, Senior Lecturer at the Free University of Brussels

1986-1988 Director of the “Laboratorio de Pesquisas” of Angola in Luanda for PETROFINA Society (Belgium), Laboratory Staff: 22 persons (biostratigraphy, petrophysics, sedimentology, geochemistry and logs)1980-1985 Assistant full time in sedimentary geology at the Free University of Brussels

1979 Coordinator at the Geological Survey of Belgium of a multi-university(UCL, ULB, FPMs) EEC program R & D of uranium exploration in the Paleozoic of Belgium (radiometric gamma bedrock,fluorimetry water, soil geochemistry)

1978 Researcher at the Free University of Brussels, Contract with the European Commission, for uranium exploration in eastern Belgium (3 months)

1978 Free University of Brussels, Expert on behalf of GEOMINES Society, research of tungstenbearing minerals in Precambrian sandstones and shales of Rwanda (9 months)

1976-1977 Assistant Free University of Brussels (bilateral agreements Algeria-Belgium) at the University of Constantine (Algeria), Mining Geology

La géologie, une science plus que passionnante … et diverse