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Updated on October 31, 2022

Welcome to my website! 


I am a petrologist-geochemist-volcanologist from Sichuan China. 

I work as an assistant professor (and curator of Stephen Hui Geological Museum) at the University of Hong Kong since October 2022. Before moving to Hong Kong, I spent six years (2008-2014) in Beijing for my undergraduate and master studies at Peking University, and six years (2014-2020) in Singapore for my Ph.D. study at Nanyang Technological University (NTU), followed by a 1.5-year postdoc at Cambridge, U.K. (see my latest CV). 

My research combines petrological observations, chemical analyses, thermodynamic/diffusion modelling (Python/Matlab), and high-temperature experiments to unravel:

(1) volcanoes: mechanisms of volcanic eruptions, eruptions sizes and styles, the architecture of volcano plumbing systems, and volcanic hazards

(2) volatiles in subduction-zone magmatism

(3) timescales of magmatic processes (diffusion chronometry) and geological events (Ar-Ar and U-Th dating)

(4) mantle temperature-lithology, and mantle upwelling (current project).

(5) REEs (rare earth elements) and magma-related ore generation

My research areas include Merapi volcano (Indonesia), Mount Erebus (Antarctica), Changbaishan volcano (China), and Mayon volcano (Philippines). 

I have been intensively working on investigating volcanic effusive-explosive transition at subduction-zone volcanoes using a volatile-bearing mineral - apatite (check out modelling tools we developed shown on research projects and models/tools pages). For my postdoc research at Cambridge, I used ocean island basalts to estimate mantle potential temperatures and lithologies (part of the MC2 project funded by NERC).

I welcome Ph.D. students, RAs and postdocs to join my group (see VACANCIES page). Please do not hesitate to contact me (weiranli AT if you are interested. 

p.s. I am trying to update this website at the beginning/end of every month.




Seeking Ph.D. students in Petrology-Volcanology/Research Assistants/Postdocs to join our team at the University of Hong Kong.

Check Vacancies page for details.


Check out our new paper in Geology about the cause of an explosive-effusive-explosive eruption transition at Rabaul volcano, Papua New Guinea, with insights from apatite 

March 17th  

I gave an invited talk over Zoom (in Chinese) for Southwest University (西北大学). The recorded talk can be found on "PRESENTATIONS" page.

February 24th 

I gave an invited talk at the Bochum diffusion seminar series about applications of apatite diffusion chronometry to estimating magma ascent time-rates. See the link to the recorded talk on "PRESENTATIONS" page.


A new python package called pyAp is released!

See "MODELS/TOOLS" page for details. 


See more activities on "UPDATES" page

Feel free to email me:

weiranli AT

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