Joshua A Coyan, PhD

Josh Coyan is a Research Geologist at the Geology, Mineral, Energy, and Geophysics (GMEG) Science Center. He received a M.S. and Ph.D. in geology from Arizona State University. Since joining the USGS in 2016, Josh has devoted his career to studying resource assessments and specializes in geostatistics.


Presently Josh's research focuses on predicting and understanding the distribution of critical minerals and valuable resources on Earth, Mars, and the Lunar surface!

Josh is a geologist who works at the USGS Spokane Office, Spokane, Washington. He provides expertise in, structural geology, statistics, two-, three-, and four- dimension modeling, and machine learning. His recent work includes a tungsten resource assessment in the Great Basin, platinum group elements in the Duluth Complex of the Mid-Continent Rift, and subsurface geometry in southwest Montana.

He is also a co-investigator for the Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI), Resources for Exploration & Science of OUR Cosmic Environment (RESOURCE) project and NASAs Volatiles Investigating Polar Exploration Rover (VIPER) project.

Professional Experience

  • 2016 - Present, Research Geologist, Geology, Minerals, Energy, and Geophysics Science Center, Spokane WA.
  • 2011-2016 Exploration and Development Geologist, Chevron Corporation, Houston, TX.


  • Ph.D. degree, Geological Sciences, Arizona State University, 2011.
  • M.S. degree, Geology, Arizona State University, 2005.
  • B.S. degree, Geology, Arizona State University, 2003.

Non-USGS Partners

  • Companhia de Pesquisa de Recursos Minerais (Geological Survey of Brazil)
  • Geological Survey of Canada, Geoscience Australia
  • Goskomzemgeodezkadastr (Geological Survey of Uzbekistan)
  • NASA Ames
  • Solar System Exploration Resource Virtual Institute (SSERVI)