School of Civil Engineering and Surveying


Photo of Dr Fay Couceiro

Dr Fay Couceiro

  • Qualifications: BSc PhD
  • Role Title: Senior Research Fellow
  • Address: Burnaby Building, University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth PO1 3AH UK
  • Telephone: +44 (0)23 9284 2399
  • Email:
  • Department: School of Civil Engineering & Surveying
  • Faculty: Faculty of Technology


I am a Research Fellow in the School of Civil Engineering and Surveying with a particular interest in sediment and aquatic contaminants and exchange processes. After completing a BSc in Marine Biology from Queen's University, I gained funding for a PhD project monitoring seasonal intertidal sediment-water column nutrient exchange to determine the significance of intertidal sediments on nutrient dynamics in Strangford Lough. I later moved to the University of Plymouth where I worked as part of an inter-disciplinary team investigating sediment dynamics and associated contaminant transport in estuaries before moving to Portsmouth to continue my career in this multi-disciplinary field. Since coming to Portsmouth I have been involved with a number of NERC funded marine, freshwater and estuarine grants working in the School of Earth and Environmental Science before moving to the School of Civil Engineering and Surveying to increase my (and hopefully the wider publics) knowledge of contaminant source and fate in all environments, not just aquatic.

Teaching Responsibilities

My current role is predominantly research based although I have enjoyed teaching students in many guises over the years. My lecture based teaching has included providing lectures in units such as Oceanography, Marine Pollution and Environmental Geochemistry and Analytical Techniques to running entire units such as Coastal Navigation, Global climate change and Environmental Management. My favourite teaching is usually during fieldwork however, I have been lucky enough to take students to all sorts of places, from local rocky shores to tropical jungle and coral reefs in Belize and it is on trips such as these that students really get the chance to connect with the environment they are studying and see how those studies can be used in application. Another facet of teaching I find rewarding is supervising and mentoring project students from honours projects to PhDs and seeing confidence in their own laboratory skills and project planning grow.


I am currently expanding my research in contaminants and their fate to include organic pollutants alongside my on-going research into inorganic metal and excess nutrient pollution. As such my research is an eclectic mixture including studies involving polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (particularly those released from fossil fuels and their fate), metaldehyde (a molluscicide used in farming causing issues for water companies), nutrients in aquatic systems and understanding the role of sediments in their availability under differing environmental conditions (particularly climate change induced effects), the distribution and likelihood of contaminant remobilization from estuarine sediments with a historic legacy of contamination.


Research profile

Explore my research profile, publications and activities on the Portsmouth Research Portal

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