Vincent van Hinsberg

Associate Professor

Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences
3450 University St.
Montreal, Quebec
Canada H3A 0E8

Email: vincent.vanhinsberg [at]

Tel: 514.398.8112

Research website






EPSC 445 Metamorphic Petrology 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer

EPSC 552 Selected Topics 3 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer


The abundance of water on Earth has a profound impact on how our planet operates: aqueous fluids facilitate melting and subduction, and hence plate tectonics, control the redistribution of elements to make ore deposits, and determine the availability of (trace) element nutrients to life. Knowledge of the compositions of these fluids is therefore essential. Unfortunately, direct fluid samples are rare, especially for deep in the Earth and for its earliest history. However, minerals with preserved compositions are readily available, sampling environments to more than 200 km depth and back to at least 4.2 billion years ago. Minerals capture a fingerprint of the associated fluid by element exchange, and in my research I investigate how to read this mineral record. This involves understanding how elements partition in mineral-fluid and mineral-melt partitioning experiments from surface conditions to high temperature and pressure; computational modelling of mineral lattices and aqueous complexes, and in-situ trace element work on natural samples. The key mineral used in these studies is tourmaline, although we also work on fluorite, albite, chlorite and perovskite.

Recent Publications

Lowenstern, J.B., van Hinsberg, V., Berlo, K., Liesegang, M., Iacovino, K., Bindeman, I.N., and Wright, H.M., (2018). Opal-a in glassy pumice, acid alteration, and the 1817 phreatomagmatic eruption at kawah ijen (Java), Indonesia. Frontiers in Earth Science, 6:11, doi:10.3389/feart.2018.00011.

Nisbet, H., Migdisov, A., Xu, H., Guo, X., van Hinsberg, V., Williams-Jones, A.E., Boukhalfa, H., and Roback, R., (2018). An experimental study of the solubility and speciation of thorium in chloride-bearing aqueous solutions at temperatures up to 250 °C. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 239, 363-373, doi:10.1016/j.gca.2018.08.001.

Szilas, K., van Hinsberg, V., McDonald, I., Næraa, T., Rollinson, H., Adetunji, J., and Bird, D., (2018). Highly refractory Archaean peridotite cumulates: Petrology and geochemistry of the Seqi Ultramafic Complex, SW Greenland. Geoscience Frontiers, 9(3), 689-714, doi:10.1016/j.gsf.2017.05.003.

van Hinsberg, V., Crotty, C., Roozen, S., Szilas, K., and Kisters, A., (2018). Pressure–Temperature History of the> 3 Ga Tartoq Greenstone Belt in Southwest Greenland and Its Implications for Archaean Tectonics. Geosciences, 8(10), 367.

Yang, L., Van Hinsberg, V.J., and Samson, I.M., (2018). A new method to deconvolute binary mixture in LA-ICP-MS analyses to quantify the composition of phases smaller than the laser spot size. Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 33(9), 1518-1528, doi:10.1039/c8ja00078f.

Complete list


Back to top