Dino Milisse is Director of the National Geology Museum of Mozambique. After graduating in geology at the University Eduardo Mondlane, he was Head of the Applied Geology Department of the Direcção National de Geologia and then Director at the Mineral and Energy Resources Department of the Inhambane Province until he moved to the National Geology Museum. He has extensive cartography experience and was co-author and coordinator of various geological-environmental maps of Mozambique.

Estela Cuambe is Financial Manager at the National Museum of Geology (Maputo). Estela's outstanding work with the finances and logistics of the project is invaluable.

Ricardo Araújo is a paleontologist and co-founder of the PalNiassa project. He did a PhD at the Southern Methodist University (USA) on Angolan plesiosaurs and sauropterygian functional morphology under a Fulbright Scholarship. He's currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Lisbon (Portugal) and Museum für Naturkunde (Germany). Ricardo led several PalNiassa expeditions and supervised/trained the Mozambican students. He also designed the Paleontology Laboratory and monitored its construction and setting up phases.

Nelson Nhamutole is currently head of the Laboratory of Paleontology of the National Geology Museum. After completing his Geology degree at the Eduardo Mondlane University (Maputo), Nelson spent two years in Portugal attending a post-graduate course in Vertebrate Paleontology. He began participating in the PalNiassa expeditions in 2012 and has since joined the  National Geology Museum. 

Rui Martins is an auxiliary researcher at Instituto Superior Técnico (Portugal) and a specialist in synchrotron radiation-based techniques. He collaborates actively with the Lourinhã Museum (Portugal) and the National Museum of Geology for applying synchrotron scanning techniques to the study of unique fossil specimens. 


Zanildo Macungo studied two dicynodont specimens collected during the 2014 PalNiassa expedition for his undergraduate research thesis at the Eduardo Mondlane University, which he defended successfully in March 2016. Zanildo is currently receiving training to become a fossil preparator at the Laboratory of Paleontology of the National Museum of Geology.

Filipa Ferrão is the Project Coordinator at the Instituto Plasmas e Fusão Nuclear and her valuable help is assisting us with project management tasks, grant writing and applications, and budget administration.


Past members

Albano Nhassengo is a Geology graduate from Eduardo Mondlane University. He did his research thesis on dycinodont specimens collected in the Niassa supervised by PalNiassa paleontologists. Albano is currently receiving training to become a fossil preparator at the Laboratory of Paleontology of the National Museum of Geology. 

Salimo Murrula started his paleontological work after joining the PalNiassa expedition in 2010. He received training as a fossil preparator in Portugal and was then accepted at the University of Minho (Portugal) for an undergraduate degree, which he completed in June 2016. Salimo participated in various field expeditions and prepared many unique specimens that are currently being studied. 

Rui Castanhinha is a paleontologist and co-founder of the PalNiassa Project. He did a PhD at the Gulbenkian Institut (Portugal) on the evolution of development using chicken embryos as a model organism. He participated in the first PalNiassa field campaigns and helped co-supervise the first PalNiassa students. 



Luis Costa Junior PalNiassa

Luís Costa Júnior was co-founder of the PalNiassa Project. He was Director of the National Museum of Geology when the project was launched and until he passed away in 2015. His enthusiasm and dedication for the preservation of the Mozambican geological heritage was instrumental for the success of PalNiassa and for the reorganisation of the National Museum of Geology and its fossil collection. He was also responsible for the largest geological survey in Mozambique and a great supporter of the Mozambican scientific development.