Catherine Hanks

Cathy Hanks
  • Associate Professor, Ph.D., Petroleum Engineering
  • (907) 474-5562
  • Reichardt 346

Background and Research Interests

Dr. Hanks is a structural geologist with an emphasis on the structural evolution of fold-and-thrust belts and the implications for petroleum distribution. Most of her recent and current research has focussed on fracture distribution in the rangefront and structures of the Brooks Range of northern Alaska and the implications for reservoir behavior and fluid migration history.

In addition, Dr. Hanks has been active in recruiting and retention of Alaska Native students into the sciences, in particular the geosciences.


  • GEOS 692 - Topics in Petroleum Geology
  • PETE 421 - Reservoir Characterization
  • PETE 621 - Applied Reservoir Characterization
  • PETE 692 - SEM: Topics in Petroleum Geology


  • Ph.D. in Geology, University of Alaska Fairbanks, 1991
  • M. S. in Geology, University of Washington, 1981
  • B. S. in Geology, Rice University, 1978

Areas of Specialization

  • Structural Geology with emphasis on structural evolution of fold-and-thrust belts.
  • Fracturing of detachment-folded carbonate rocks with implications for resource behavior.
  • Geologic evolution of northern Alaska.
  • Recruiting & retaining minorities into the geosciences .


For more information on recent research, including:

  • Distribution and Character of Fractures in the Lisburne Group, Northeastern Brooks Range, Alaska
  • Crustal-scale evolution of northern Alaska
  • Geologic evolution of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
  • Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and Geologic Reconnaissance in Arctic Regions