Biography

After obtaining a Geology BSc from Bristol University and a PhD in Sedimentology from Leeds University, Jan Alexander became a lecturer in the Geology Department of University College Cardiff (which became Cardiff University).  In 1996, Jan was appointed Senior Lecturer in Sedimentology at UEA and promoted to Professor of Environmental Earth Science in 2009.  


Jan's early research concentrated on tectonic controls on sedimentary processes (e.g. how rivers or ocean floor processes respond to tectonic activity), controls on sediments accumulation over long periods of time and the three-dimensional architecture of sedimentary rock types.  Recently she has mostly concentrated on how sediment is eroded, transported and deposited in extreme events (floods and sub-aqueous gravity flows), and the diagnostic features in the deposits that might be used to recognise them in the rock record.  Over the years, Jan has studied sedimentary processes and products in rivers, lakes, seas and oceans of North America, Australia and Europe, and also undertaken a wide range of laboratory experiments to understand aspects of the interactions between moving water and sediment.
 
Jan Alexander teaches at all levels within UEA including contributions to the undergraduate first year module "Understanding the Dynamic Planet", second year "Earth Science Skills" and "Sedimentology", third year "Fossil Fuels" and MSc "Research topics in Earth Sciences".  She also supervises PhD students.

Website: http://www.uea.ac.uk/environmental-sciences/people/perspages/alexander

Career History

  • 1986-89 Lecturer in Applied Sedimentology, Geology Department, University College, Cardiff.
  • 1989-96 Lecturer, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Wales, Cardiff.
  • 1993 Honorary Assistant Professor, Department of Geological Sciences, State University of New York - Binghampton, USA.
  • 1996-2002 Senior Lecturer, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia.
  • 2002 Visiting Fellow, University of Queensland, Brisbane.
  • 2002-2009 Reader, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia.
  • 2009 - Professor of Environmental Earth Sciences, University of East Anglia.

PhD Positions

Click here for current PhD opportunities in the School of Environmental Sciences.  However, feel free to email me to discuss projects outside these areas and alternative sources of funding.

All Publications

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Froude, M. J., Alexander, J., Barclay, J., Cole, P.

(2017)

Interpreting flash flood palaeoflow parameters from antidunes and gravel lenses: An example from Montserrat, West Indies,

in Sedimentology

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(E-pub ahead of print)


Alexander, J., Cooker, M.

(2016)

Moving boulders in flash floods and estimating flow conditions using boulders in ancient deposits,

in Sedimentology

63

(6)

pp. 1582–1595

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Herbert, C., Alexander, J., Martinez De Alvaro, M.

(2015)

Back-flow ripples in troughs downstream of unit bars: Formation, preservation and value for interpreting flow conditions,

in Sedimentology

62

(7)

pp. 1814–1836

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Macdonald, R. G., Alexander, J., Bacon, J. C., Cooker, M. J.

(2013)

Variations in the architecture of hydraulic-jump bar complexes on non-eroding beds,

in Sedimentology

60

(5)

pp. 1291-1312

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Fielding, C., Allen, J., Alexander, J., Gibling, M., Rygel, M., Calder, J.

(2011)

Fluvial systems and their deposits in hot, seasonal semiarid and subhumid settings: modern and ancient examples,

in From River to Rock Record: The preservation of fluvial sediments and their subsequent interpretation.

SEPM Special Publication 97

pp. 89-111

ISBN 978-1-56576-305-0

UEA Repository

(Chapter)

(Published)


Alexander, J., Barclay, J., Susnik, J., Loughlin, S., Herd, R., Darnell, A., Crosweller, S.

(2010)

Sediment-charged flash floods on Montserrat: The influence of synchronous tephra fall and varying extent of vegetation damage,

in Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research

194

(4)

pp. 127-138

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Hodson, J., Alexander, J.

(2010)

The effects of grain-density variation on turbidity currents and some implications for the deposition of carbonate turbidites,

in Journal of Sedimentary Research

80

(5-6)

pp. 515-528

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Fielding, C., Allen, J., Alexander, J., Gibling, M.

(2009)

Facies model for fluvial systems in the seasonal tropics and subtropics,

in Geology

37

(7)

pp. 623-626

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


MacDonald, R. G., Alexander, J., Bacon, J. C., Cooker, M. J.

(2009)

Flow patterns, sedimentation and deposit architecture under a hydraulic jump on a non-eroding bed: Defining hydraulic-jump unit bars,

in Sedimentology

56

(5)

pp. 1346-1367

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Macdonald, R., Cooker, M., Bacon, J., Alexander, J.

(2009)

The flow field around a hemisphere here a hydraulic jump is created and implications for sediment deposition,

UEA Repository

(Paper)

(Published)


Maher, B., Watkins, S., Brunskill, G., Alexander, J., Fielding, C.

(2009)

Sediment provenance in a tropical fluvial and marine context by magnetic 'fingerprinting' of transportable sand fractions,

in Sedimentology

56

(3)

pp. 841-861

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Alexander, J.

(2008)

Bedforms in Froude-supercritical flow,

in Marine and River Dune Dynamics Conference Volume.

Leeds University

pp. 1-5

ISBN 978-2-11-097208-8

UEA Repository

(Chapter)

(Published)


Alexander, J., McLelland, S., Gray, T., Vincent, C., Leeder, M., Ellett, S.

(2008)

Laboratory sustained turbidity currents form elongate ridges at channel mouths,

in Sedimentology

55

(4)

pp. 845-868

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Alexander, J.

(2007)

Cyclic steps and chutes and pools,

UEA Repository

(Paper)

(Published)


Barclay, J., Alexander, J., Susnik, J.

(2007)

Rainfall-induced lahars in the Belham Valley, Montserrat, West Indies,

in Journal of the Geological Society

164

(4)

pp. 815-827

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


Hodson, J., Alexander, J., Kendall, A., Beavington Penney, S.

(2007)

Lateral variability in calci-turbidites: An example from the Irish Carboniferous,

UEA Repository

(Paper)

(Published)


Macdonald, R., Alexander, J., Cooker, M., Bacon, J.

(2007)

Flume experiments to characterise sedimentary features formed under hydraulic jumps,

UEA Repository

(Paper)

(Published)


Macdonald, R., Alexander, J., Cooker, M., Bacon, J.

(2007)

Sedimentary features formed under hydraulic jumps on a non-eroding surface,

(Poster)

(Published)


Susnik, J., Barclay, J., Alexander, J., Herd, R., Darnell, A., Crosweller, S.

(2007)

Little and often or once in a while with a bang? Quantifying lahar hazard on Montserrat,

UEA Repository

(Paper)

(Published)


Alexander, J., Fielding, C.

(2006)

Coarse-grained floodplain deposits in the seasonal tropics: Towards a better facies model,

in Journal of Sedimentary Research

76

(3-4)

pp. 539-556

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)

(Published)


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Key Research Interests

Sediment erosion, transport and deposition in extreme events (particularly high magnitude floods, submarine gravity currents); sedimentary bedforms and structures; tectonic and climatic controls on sediment distribution; geological record of environmental change.

The sedimentary processes and products of extreme events fascinate me.  How is sediment eroded, transported and deposited in floods and sub-aqueous flows?  What controls how sediments accumulate over long periods of time and how can studying modern events help the interpretation of the rock record?  Over the years I have studied sedimentary processes and products in rivers, lakes and seas of North America, Australia and Europe, rocks ranging in age from Cambrian to Holocene, and also undertaken a wide range of laboratory experiments to understand fluid dynamical processes involved in sediment movement.


Current research projects include studies of; boulder movement in flash floods, sedimentary structure development in sand, Jurassic stratigraphy and palaeo-environment interpretation and sediment movement in tidal bores.

Publications: EPrints Digital Repository
 

Teaching Interests

Jan Alexander teaches at all levels within the University of East Anglia from the first year undergraduate module "Understanding the Dynamic Planet" to the MSc module "Research topics in Earth Sciences".