Aral I. Okay




B.Sc. 1976 University College London

Ph.D. 1980 Cambridge University


Istanbul Technical University

Eurasia Institute of Earth Sciences


Faculty of Mines, Department of Geology

Maslak 34469 Istanbul Turkey


tel.: +90(212) 285-6208
fax: +90(212) 285-6210






















Geology of Turkey

A bibliography

Geology of Turkey

Maps and diagrams

Geology of Turkey

Useful links

Geology of Turkey

A synopsis


tavsanli guidebook



Currently my research centers on two partly overlapping fields: regional geology and metamorphic petrology


Regional geology

          I work to understand the Phanerozoic tectonic evolution of the Eastern Mediterranean and Black Sea region, and specifically Turkey.  It is a fascinating orogenic area shaped by subductions and continental collisions.  There are also several episodes of rifting, ocean floor spreading and strike-slip faulting.  It has been an orogenic area almost continuously in the last 400 million years.  

          We spend several months each summer in the field, mapping and collecting structural, petrographic, sedimentological and paleontological data in various regions of Turkey.  The field data is combined with petrological, geochronological and geochemical data to decipher the tectonic evolution of the region.  The few selected recent papers below illustrate the type of research we are doing:

Okay, A.I., Sunal, G., Sherlock, S., Altıner, D., Tüysüz, O., Kylander-Clark, A.R.C. & Aygül, M., 2013, Early Cretaceous sedimentation and orogeny on the active margin of Eurasia: southern Central Pontides, Turkey. Tectonics, 32, 1247-1271.

Okay, A.I. & Nikishin, A.M., 2015, Tectonic evolution of the southern margin of Laurasia in the Black Sea region. International Geology Review, 57, 1051-1076.

Okay, A.I., Zattin, M. & Cavazza, W., 2010, Apatite fission-track data for Miocene Arabia-Eurasia collision. Geology, 38, 35-38.


Metamorphic petrology

          Over many years I have been fascinated by the geology of the high and ultrahigh pressure metamorphic rocks.  Their mineralogy is interesting with unusual minerals, such as jadeite, glaucophane, lawsonite, coesite, aragonite…  They also indicate deep burial and subsequent exhumation of oceanic and continental crust, and provide valuable constraints on the thermal structure of the down going lithosphere, as well as on the temporal evolution of subduction zones.  The few selected recent papers below illustrate my research in HP rocks:

Okay, A.I., Sunal, G., Tüysüz, O., Sherlock, S., Keskin,M. & Kylander-Clark, A.R.C., 2014, Low-pressure - high-temperature metamorphism during extension in a Jurassic magmatic arc, Central Pontides, Turkey. Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 32, 49-69.

Topuz, G., Okay, A.I., Altherr, R., Satir, M., Schwarz, W.H., 2008, Late Cretaceous blueschist-facies metamorphism in southeastern Thrace (Turkey) and its geodynamic implications. Journal of Metamorphic Geology, 26, 895–913.


Research Students

Ph.D. Students:

Serdar Akyüz (1995)

Sarah Sherlock (1999)

Cenk Yaltırak (2003)

Zahide Özgörüş (2010)

Kenan Akbayram (2011)

Mesut Aygül (2015)

Remziye Karadoğan


M.Sc. Students:

M. Burak Yıkılmaz (2002)

Zahide Özgörüş (2003)

A. Turgay Akbulut (2004)

Kenan Akbayram (2006)

Ömer Faruk Dereköy (2006)

Semih Can Ülgen (2011)



At present I teach the following classes:


Autumn semester

Geology of Turkey (with Okan Tüysüz)

Topics in regional geology

Metamorphic minerals and textures (with Gültekin Topuz)


Spring semester

Structural Geology


Topics in Metamorphic Petrology (with Gültekin Topuz)



Publications – full papers