Geologist Fernanda Gervasoni is captivated by the extreme processes within the planet’s depths and how they shape Earth’s most superficial geological layers. Equipped with a master’s degree in geosciences from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, her alma mater, she furthered her knowledge by pursuing a doctorate in experimental petrology at the University of Münster in Germany. Her passion lies in unraveling the mysteries of minerals and rocks forged in the Earth’s mantle’s fiery depths. Alongside her research endeavors, she also imparts her knowledge as a geology professor at the Federal University of Goiás. Beyond academia, she finds solace in exploring new destinations with her husband, indulging in culinary adventures, and maintaining her physical and mental well-being through yoga practice.
Alkaline rocks, including kimberlites, carbonatites, and kamafugites, are rare rocks found in scattered locations around the globe. Kimberlites are renowned for hosting diamonds, while carbonatites are rich in niobium (Nb), phosphorus (P), and rare earth elements. Kamafugites, the rarest of the three, are found in only a few places, with the most voluminous occurrences in Brazil’s Midwest region. The precise origin of these alkaline rocks remains elusive. However, we know they come from deep within the Earth’s mantle, at depths ranging from 70 to 250 kilometers. The high concentration of volatile elements (C, H, O, F, Cl, N) in their composition suggests that portions of the Earth’s mantle may be exceptionally rich in these elements. To decipher the perplexing role of volatiles in the Earth’s mantle and the genesis and evolution of alkaline rocks in Central-West Brazil, this research proposes to explore inclusions found within diamonds and crystallized minerals in these magmas. These inclusions serve as invaluable time capsules, safeguarding the chemical and mineralogical conditions under which these rocks formed. By meticulously studying these inclusions, scientists can unlock profound insights into the deep Earth processes that give rise to these rare and fascinating rocks.