Assoc. Prof. Leanne Armand

BSc. Hons. 

A/Prof. Leanne Armand is an expert in Southern Ocean diatom taxonomy (the identification of marine microscopic phytoplankton). She has a strong interest in the distribution of individual species related to the physical oceanic environment, and the subsequent preservation of this environmental relationship in the fossil record. She uses the records of fossil diatoms in deep sea cores between Australia and Antarctica to estimate past climatic conditions, such as sea ice extent and sea surface temperatures over the last glacial cycles (~240,000 yr). A/Prof. Armand was the Chief Scientist of the very successful palaeoceanographic mission to the Sabrina Coast, East Antarctica, on Australia's new research vessel the RV Investigator (2017). She is the Director of the national Collaborative Australian Postgraduate Sea Training Alliance Network (CAPSTAN) designing a Master-level training at sea program with the Marine National Facility and on the RV Investigator from mid-2017, and was a Deputy Director of the new Macquarie University Marine Research Centre, MQ Marine 2015-2016. She recently took up the three year role of council member of the International Society of Diatom Research (2016).

A/Prof. Armand joined the Department of Biological Sciences at Macquarie University in 2009 as a Centre of Research Excellence (CoRE) appointee to Climate Futures at Macquarie. She is the Chief Proponent of the new national Collaborative Australian Postgraduate Sea Training Alliance Network (CAPSTAN) initiative, with the Marine National Facility's RV Investigator. A/Prof. Armand currently convenes the unit "Biology in Practice" a skills-based course for 1st year biology students. She was the Director of the Marine Science undergraduate programme (2010-2013), course convenor of BIOL121 (Marine Biology and Ecosystems) and MAR201 (Introduction to Marine Science) and is a supervisor to Merit Scholars, Master and PhD students. She has succeeded in attracting over $2.8 Million in research funding and $8.7 Million in ship time to the Southern Ocean where she conducts her research. A/Prof. Armand is an active participant in CSIRO's Scientists in Schools program and provides motivational talks on her experiences as a female research scientist to the public.

Prior to her current appointment, A/Prof. Armand held post-doctoral positions at the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystem CRC in Hobart, Tasmania. While there she was the first Australian awarded an European Union Incoming Marie Curie Fellowship (FP6, 2005-07), which she undertook at the University of Marseille, France, in collaboration with Prof. Bernard Quéguiner. During this time she focused her research on the living diatom community of the Southern Ocean near Heard and Kerguelen Islands where she has contributed knowledge to the understanding of diatom community responses and the export of their carbon to the seafloor as a result of their population explosion under the annual, naturally iron-stimulated, spring bloom.  In 2007 A/Prof. Armand was awarded the Australian Academy of Science's Dorothy Hill award for her excellence in palaeoceanographic research and also the Bigelow Laboratory's Rose-Provasoli award. A/Prof. Armand completed her PhD in 1998 at the Australian National University under the guidance of Prof. Patrick DeDeckker and the late Dr Jean-Jacques Pichon (Univ. Bordeaux I, France).


Related websites

Macquarie University Staff Profile:

MQMarine Research Centre:

Climate Futures at Macquarie:

Leanne K. Armand


Totten Voyage 2014:

KEOPS2 Mission (2011): (Currently unavailable due to University Website reconfiguration).

Australian Academy of Science's Interviews with Australian scientists: 

Publications list