Prof. Nils Lenhardt
University of Pretoria
Department of Geology

Research keywords: Sedimentology, Physical Volcanology, Shale Gas, Tight Reservoirs



Nils Lenhardt is an Associate Professor at the Department of Geology at the University of Pretoria. He holds an MSc (2004) and PhD (2009) from the Technische Universität Darmstadt in Germany.

As a sedimentologist and physical volcanologist, Nils’ research is traditionally field-based and combines field, mapping and laboratory methods to decipher the formation of volcano-sedimentary sequences in Earth’s history from the Archaean to the Holocene. His research focuses on the influence of volcanic activity on sedimentation in volcano-sedimentary basins and the complex interplay between volcanic and sedimentary processes. Past as well as on-going projects centred or still centre around African intra-plate volcanism in South Africa, Sudan, Tanzania and Cameroon. Due to various international scientific collaborations, similar projects are also carried out in India and China. As part of CIMERA, Nils currently focuses on the pre-Drakensberg volcanism and sill intrusions of the Karoo and their significance for basin evolution and shale gas formation.  

Nils has been rated as a C2 scientist by the National Research Foundation in 2020. He presented a large number of talks at international conferences and authored/ co-authored >30 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters.


Recent Publications


Omietimi, E.J., Chouhan, A.K., Lenhardt, N., Yang, R. and Bumby, A.J. (2021) Structural interpretation of the south-western flank of the Anambra Basin (Nigeria) using satellite-derived WGM 2012 gravity data. Journal of African Earth Sciences, 182, 104290.

Li, Y., Fan, A., Yang, R., Sun, Y. and Lenhardt, N. (2021) Sedimentary facies control on sandstone reservoir properties: a case study from the Permian Shanxi Formation in the southern Ordos Basin, central China. Marine and Petroleum Geology, 129, 105083.


Jolayemi, O.O., Robb, L., Lenhardt, N. and Hughes, H. (2020) Different melt source regions for the volcanics of the Bushveld large igneous province: New observations from MELTS modeling of the Palaeoproterozoic Rooiberg Group (South Africa). Journal of African Earth Sciences, 172, 103999.

Lenhardt, N., Altermann, W., Humbert, F. and de Kock, M. (2020) Lithostratigraphy of the Palaeoproterozoic Hekpoort Formation (Pretoria Group, Transvaal Supergroup), South Africa. South African Journal of Geology, 123(4), 655-668.

Lenhardt, N., Bleeker, W., Ngwa, C.N. and Aucamp, T. (2020) Shallow marine basaltic volcanism of the Machadodorp Member (Silverton Formation, Pretoria Group), Transvaal Basin, South Africa — An example of Paleoproterozoic explosive intraplate volcanic activity in an epeiric embayment. Precambrian Research, 338, 105580.