Come and meet the experienced team at MGPalaeo, and the Affiliates we work closely with to improve the range of services we can offer.

Palynologists / Sedimentologists / Consultants & Affiliates / In Memoriam


Carey Hannaford
Director / Palynologist / Sequence Stratigrapher

Carey has more than 20 years experience in the oil and gas industry with a background in biostratigraphy, sequence stratigraphy and petroleum exploration.

Since becoming a director at MGPalaeo, Carey has expanded on her existing skills in biostratigraphy to grow the company’s footprint to all Australian sedimentary basins and into SE Asia; as well as expanding the business to service the coal, mineral and groundwater sectors.

Most recently she has been responsible for MGPalaeo’s AUSTRALIS database project, which began with the Northwest Shelf geological database. This database combines MGPalaeo’s extensive biostratigraphic database with new lithostratigraphic and chronostratigraphic interpretation across the northwest shelf.

In the past 2 years the Australis database has been expanded to cover the Otway Basin, Gippsland Basin, Pedirka Basin, Perth Basin, Canning Basin and Great Artesian Basin. Central to these databases are robust, standardised sequence stratigraphic, lithostratigraphic and biostratigraphic frameworks and clean, quality controlled well data.

Dr Daniel Mantle
Director / Palynologist

Come and meet the experienced staff at MGPalaeo, Geological and Stratigraphical Consultants for the oil and gas industry - Dr Daniel Mantle

Daniel joined MGPalaeo in 2011 and has been involved in wellsite palynology in the Southern Highlands of Papua New Guinea and office-based studies on Triassic-Cretaceous sections from the North West Shelf and offshore Victorian basins and Permian-Jurassic coal-seam gas and shale gas projects in New South Wales and Queensland.

Daniel first moved to Australia (from Ireland) in 2003 to complete a PhD at the University of Queensland on the Middle Jurassic palynology of the Bayu-Undan Field, Timor Sea. Following a short period as a junior lecturer at the university, Daniel worked as an exploration geologist in the southern Gobi Desert in Mongolia before returning to Australia to lead the Timescales Project at Geoscience Australia for four years.

His key interests include Triassic-Jurassic dinoflagellate cyst taxonomy and the application of palynology to integrated sequence stratigraphic projects.

Dr John Lignum
Director / Palynologist

John joined MGPalaeo in August 2012, following four years industrial experience in the UK. John completed his PhD thesis entitled “Cenomanian (Upper Cretaceous) palynology and chemostratigraphy: dinoflagellate cysts as indicators of palaeoenvironmental and sea-level change” at Kingston University London. His thesis documented the dinocyst assemblages of seven Upper Cretaceous sections of NW Europe, improving the dinocyst biostratigraphic database for the Upper Albian to Lower Turonian interval. A combination of palynostratigraphy, lithostratigraphy and chemostratigraphy were employed to provide detailed correlations of the sections and to reconstruct palaeoenvironmental and sea-level change.

John’s interest in the Mesozoic has continued throughout his industrial experience, concentrating on palynological analyses of Cretaceous, Jurassic and Triassic sections. UK-based projects involved the stratigraphic interpretation of single wells, and stratigraphic correlations of multiple wells ranging over the Cenozoic to Triassic from numerous basins, offshore Norway and the UK. Since moving to MGPalaeo, John has continued with palynological analysis of Mesozoic intervals of wells from Australia, Papua New Guinea, and Timor-Leste.

John enjoys multiple well stratigraphic correlation, utilizing local palynological events to maximize the biostratigraphic correlation. He also has a keen interest in integrating palynological data with other geological/sedimentological datasets to better understand the stratigraphy and depositional environment.

John has co-authored 4 peer-reviewed papers in journals Paleooceanography, the Journal of Micropalaeontology, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, and West Australian Basins Symposium. John actively reviews palynology-based manuscripts from Newsletters on Stratigraphy, and Cretaceous Research.

Come and meet the experienced staff at MGPalaeo, Geological and Stratigraphical Consultants for the oil and gas industry - Dr Adam Charles

Dr Adam Charles
Director / Palynologist

Adam joined MGPalaeo in January 2012, after completing his PhD at the University of Southampton, UK. His work predominantly focuses on the palynology of the Late Jurassic – Cretaceous of Australia and Papua New Guinea, with extensive rigsite experience in the latter locality. Additional studies include palynological analysis of multiple Late Triassic wells from the North West Shelf, as well as the Australian Cenozoic.

During his PhD Adam studied the sedimentology, geochemistry and palynology of Palaeocene-Eocene boundary strata within the Spitsbergen Central Basin, Svalbard. The integration of such datasets permitted a detailed reconstruction of palaeoenvironmental conditions, enabling publications in Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, and Nature Geoscience.

Dr Marty Young
Director / Palynologist

Come and meet the experienced staff at MGPalaeo, Geological and Stratigraphical Consultants for the oil and gas industry - Dr Marty Young

Marty joined MGPalaeo in November 2012. He completed his Honours at Victoria University of Wellington (NZ) in 1999 on the Late Cretaceous sections of the Mangahounga Sandstone, where New Zealand’s first ever dinosaur fossils were found. He moved to Canberra in 2000 and worked as a palynologist at Geoscience Australia (then AGSO) for one year, before starting a PhD at the Australian National University. His thesis was on the distribution of modern organic- and calcareous-walled dinoflagellate cysts from the eastern Indian Ocean, providing the first ever study of calcareous dinocysts from this region.

Marty worked at CSIRO from 2005-2012 as a Project Leader, and was based in the Timeframes of Basin Evolution group, providing strontium dating of limestone sequences for exploration companies in Australasia and the Middle East. In 2007, he restored CSIRO’s palynological capability, and was involved with a range of research projects with international collaborators, including morphological studies, palynomorph extraction from coals, and laser ablation of palynomorphs.

Since joining MGPalaeo, Marty has been involved in wellsite palynology in Papua New Guinea and office-based studies on Permian-Cretaceous sections from PNG and the North West Shelf. His key interests include Triassic-Cretaceous dinoflagellate cyst taxonomy, high-resolution biostratigraphy, and the practical applications of palaeo-environmental interpretation.

Jesse Vitacca

Jesse joined MGPalaeo as a vacation work student in 2011, processing palynology samples in the laboratory. He graduated from Monash University in 2013 with a BSc Environmental Science and First Class Honours in Geosciences, before accepting the role of Laboratory Manager and Offshore Technician at the MGPalaeo Malaga Office in 2014, where he oversaw processing activities, site operations and offshore logistics.

In 2016 he was accepted as a PhD candidate at the University of Western Australia, investigating the Palynological assemblages of the Bathonian–Kimmeridgian sequences of the Laminaria High and Vulcan sub-basin. This project focused primarily on describing new species of dinoflagellate cysts, identifying new biostratigraphic events, and increasing the resolution of the zonation for this interval. The project is in its final stages of completion. Jesse returned to MGPalaeo in 2021 as a Palynologist, and his work largely focuses on palynostratigraphic interpretations of Australian material. His key interests include Jurassic dinoflagellate cysts taxonomy, the integration of new tools and analyses for palynological studies, and the improvement, and development of new, laboratory techniques for sample processing.

Daniel Peyrot

Daniel is an enthusiastic palynologist, dedicated to uncovering the secrets of plant evolution, focusing particularly on conifers and flowering plants. His curiosity drives him to study how these plants have historically interacted with changing climates. Since 2005, Daniel’s adventurous nature has taken him on journeys through Jurassic and Cretaceous sites across Europe and Australia. His mission? To chart the significant transformations in vegetation during the Mesozoic era. Additionally, Daniel brings his knowledge to the study of dinocysts, critical single-cell marine organisms, known for their role in harmful ‘red tides’ in today’s plankton communities.

Daniel’s deep engagement with biostratigraphy is evident. His recent collaborations with government agencies are particularly notable. These projects focus on enhancing the understanding of aquifers and surface freshwater systems, ingeniously weaving palynology with various scientific disciplines. At MGPalaeo, Daniel has discovered a vibrant workplace that not only values integrity and dedication but also shares his profound interest in paleontology and plant history.


Amely Allgöwer

Come and meet the experienced staff at MGPalaeo, Geological and Stratigraphical Consultants for the oil and gas industry - Amely Allgower

Amely joined MGPalaeo in July 2015 after spending 9 years as a clastic stratigrapher within the petroleum industry. Amely started her career in 2006 as a sedimentologist with Ichron Ltd., UK working on clastic reservoirs of the North Sea (UK and Norway) and Central Europe. In 2011, Amely moved to Australia to work with Chevron Energy Technology Company. During her time at Chevron, Amely worked predominantly on fluvial, shallow-marine and deltaic reservoirs of the Mungaroo Formation, deep-marine systems of the Barrow Formation, as well as Late Jurassic sandstones of the Jansz-Io field.

Since joining MGPalaeo Amely’s main focus has been detailed core descriptions with a passion for ichnology in a large variety of depositional environments including various deepwater settings, shallow marine shoreface and deltaics to terrestrial deposits ranging from the Late Carboniferous to Late Cretaceous from the Perth Basin to the Timor Sea.

Additional work include the preparation and presenting of MGPalaeo’s core workshops, as well as gathering data for multi-client core studies, such as our Vulcan Sub-basin core data set. Please see our sedimentology page for details of services provided by MGPalaeo.

Antoine Dillinger

Come and meet the experienced staff at MGPalaeo, Geological and Stratigraphical Consultants for the oil and gas industry - Antoine Dillinger

Antoine Dillinger is a geologist specialised in clastic sedimentology and stratigraphy, but with various experiences in sedimentary petrology, structural geology, petrophysics, and geochronology. He completed his M.Sc. at the University of Strasbourg (France) and his Ph.D. at The University of Western Australia. His working experience includes a research scientist position at CSIRO, two postdoctoral fellowships at Simon Fraser University (Canada) and Nazarbayev University (Kazakhstan), and an exploration geologist role at the Jellinbah coal mine (Queensland).

Throughout his professional journey, Antoine has had the opportunity to work on multiple academic and industry projects focused on the exploration of basins hosting substantial petroleum, geothermal, Uranium, and coal resources. Core description, the reconstruction of ancient depositional systems and their controls, and the subsurface architecture of strata are at the heart of his sedimentological interests. He also aims to stay active on the research front through his Adjunct Instructor position at NU, the publication of scientific papers, and the participation in conferences. He’s particularly eager to dive into the Western Australian stratigraphy with MGPalaeo and further unravel its natural resources.

Consultants & Affiliates

Dr Poul Schioler
Consultant Palynologist / Stratigrapher

Come and meet the experienced staff at MGPalaeo, Geological and Stratigraphical Consultants for the oil and gas industry - Dr Poul Schioler

Poul is a New Zealand-based consultant palynologist who started working with MGPalaeo in 2013. Poul has twenty-two years professional experience as a palynologist and stratigrapher undertaking both research and commercial tasks. He worked sixteen years as a palynologist for the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), primarily engaged with North Sea stratigraphy. He moved on to New Zealand in 2006 where he has worked with GNS Science as a Senior Research Geologist, with work fields in hydrocarbon related biostratigraphy of the Taranaki, East Coast, Canterbury and Great South Basins. His current key interests encompass petroleum basin geohistory and sequence stratigraphy and assessment of depositional environment using palynofacies. Poul holds a MSc and a PhD degree from University of Copenhagen.

Dr. Saju Menacherry
Sedimentologist / Reservoir Quality Specialist Geologist/ Petrographer

With 18+ years of international experience in the oil and gas industry, with an integrated approach for reservoir quality characterisation and prediction for exploration, field development and production optimisation in conventional and unconventional clastic reservoirs. In addition, Saju has experienced and expertise in integrating the reservoir/ seal characterisation for potential CO2 sequestration sites through basin analysis, petroleum system, petrographical, petrophysical and sequence stratigraphic data for the CO2 storage site characterisation projects including Chevron’s Gorgon CO2 and multiple CO2CRC Projects in Australia. Dr. Saju has held various roles at Chevron, Carnarvon Petroleum, Beach Energy, University of Adelaide for CO2CRC, Whistler Research, Mobil Oil Australia and mining organisations in India. He has considerable experience integrating sedimentary petrology (thin section, SEM, CL, BSE, XRD, fluid inclusion, stable isotope, computed tomography (CT) scanning), reservoir quality and clastic diagenesis aspects of rock properties, clay mineralogy, formation evaluation, well-logs, sequence stratigraphy, basin modelling data, petrophysics, geophysics and geomechanics data, production chemistry and production data within integrated multidisciplinary teams at all stages from exploration and development to production.

Saju holds PhD in Petroleum Geology (funded and trained by ExxonMobil) from University of Adelaide, Australia with a title “ “Source to Sink” Sedimentology and Petrology of a Dryland Fluvial System, and Implications for Reservoir Quality, Lake Eyre Basin, Central Australia”, MSc degree in geology from Kerala University, India and BSc Geology, with Chemistry and Statistics as subsidiaries from University of Calicut, India. He has (co-) authored over 20 reservoir quality characterisation reports and reservoir quality risk assessment reports, (co-) authored over 15 peer reviewed articles in international journals and more than 35 international conference presentations. He has Co-Chaired for AAPG international conference sessions, Clastic Diagenesis group and other international conferences. He was awarded the best runner up poster presentation award from SEPM/AAPG international conference in 2006. His professional affiliations are in AAPG, SEPM and PESA.

Dr. Stephen Molyneux
Petroleum Geologist

Stephen has been part of several successful oil and gas exploration teams that have found greater than 5 billion barrels of oil and gas since 1989 to present  – Enterprise, PanCanadian, Oilexco, Premier, Origin, Carnarvon. He now consults for various companies as a technical advisor for oil and gas exploration in Australia: 3dOil, Origin, Beach, NZOG, MGPalaeo to name a few. Stephen also chairs the Australia Oil and Gas Scout Group where the industry communicates on energy company matters every 3 months and also helps run the BasinsWorkshop – an annual Australia wide Petroleum Systems workshop involving up to fifty 10 minute talks early December each year. He is best recognised for his contributions as Exploration Manager at Carnarvon Petroleum in the discovery of the new Middle Triassic Petroleum System offshore WA as encapsulated by the Dorado oil and gas discovery in 2018.

Borzou Zein
Petrophysicist / Geologist

Borzou started his career as a hard rock geologist. He was part of Copper, Molybdenum, and Rare Earth Elements exploration teams. Borzou transferred his skills to the oil and gas industry as petrophysicist/geologist after completing his Honour in MSc. of petrology in 1999. He was part of an integrated exploration and reservoir study team in the Middle East and South America. He moved to Australia and provided consultancy services for Australian companies in national and international projects from 2010 to 2014. 

He Joined Carnarvon Energy as Lead Petrophysicist from 2014 to 2022. He was involved in exploration activities in the North West Shelf (NWS) to the discovery of Roc wells (gas & condensate), Dorado (Gas, condensate and light oil), and Pavo (Light oil). He was also responsible for establishing the North West Shelf petrophysical log database which is commercially available as a Multiclient DB.

Borzou possesses substantial experience in advanced geoscience studies. With experience in Multi-Mineral petrophysical interpretation, SCAL, CCAL, core description and analysis integration, Rock-typing, Geosteer modeling, planning and supervision wireline and LWD logging, processing and interpreting full wave Sonic logs, NMR & CMR, image logs and AI to achieve log and reservoir quality prediction.

In Memoriam

Dr Roger Morgan (1950–2020)
Palynologist / Stratigrapher

Come and meet the experienced staff at MGPalaeo, Geological and Stratigraphical Consultants for the oil and gas industry - Dr Roger Morgan

A titan of Australian industrial palynology, Roger Paul Morgan was a pioneer in the use of microfossils in the Australian oil and gas industry, as well as a mentor to a generation of palynologists.

Roger first encountered palynology as an undergraduate in 1968, and on the recommendation of Professor Martin Glaessner, secured vacation employment with Esso in Sydney, working with Dick Evans and Lew Stover. He proceeded to an honours project in Jurassic dinocysts with Basil Balme, then a PhD project in Cretaceous dinocysts with Robin Helby, then a job working Carboniferous to Tertiary palynology with the Geological Survey of New South Wales in Sydney. From there he went to a North Sea oil company job (with BNOC, later Britoil) for 4 years working mostly Jurassic to Tertiary dinocysts. He then returned to Australia and set up Morgan Palaeo Associates, working mostly Triassic to Tertiary palynology for the Australian oil industry.

Roger was particularly keen in pushing the resolution in palynological zonation schemes, and applications in an exploration and rigsite environment. His contributions are mostly unpublished but include revised zonation schemes in the Australian Cretaceous, North West European Tertiary, Late Cretaceous West of Shetland, Australian Jurassic and Triassic, and Cretaceous of Papua New Guinea; you can add to this many hundreds, if not thousands, of industry reports and reviews. Although relatively few, his formal publications remain keystone works for Australian and southern hemisphere palynologists and will continue to underpin regional palynostratigraphy in the decades to come.