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18 July 2017
Caught in the Storm By Robert Emberson Sampling landslides in the field varies in difficulty; some are high up on hillslopes or in the headwaters of steep catchments, while others tumble into easily accessed river valleys. When planning for such sampling, we had mainly anticipated that the weather would not be the biggest obstacle, but that’s what transpired for a major portion of our fieldwork in central Taiwan. The typical …
17 July 2017
Setting the Scene By Robert Emberson Recently I was fortunate to participate in a fieldtrip to one of most interesting places I’ve ever worked – the central mountains of Taiwan. We were looking to sample the products of chemical weathering (the dissolution of rocks by fluid) within landslides, as well as their impact on the chemistry of the highly dynamic rivers draining these tropical mountains. We ended up getting caught …
27 June 2017
This past weekend, Curiosity continued to journey east along the contact between the lower portion of Vera Rubin Ridge and the Murray formation with a drive that was a little over 20 m long.
26 June 2017
Welcome to Dominica, the Nature Island! Located in the Lesser Antilles of the Caribbean Sea, Dominica (not to be confused with the Dominican Republic) is a tropical island with nine active volcanic centers and is a great place to study geology.
24 June 2017
Curiosity has presented us with another beautiful workspace following a 16.6 meter drive. The majority of this week’s activities were focused on imaging Vera Rubin Ridge to observe its stratigraphic and structural relationship to the underlying Murray formation.
13 June 2017
Shiprock in New Mexico is a classic example of a volcanic neck. It is a vertical column of volcanic rock that sticks up around the surrounding landscape, with dikes that radiate from the central core. Although ours isn’t as high, we have a literal version of Shiprock in our field area.
12 June 2017
In my last post, I showed off some of the metamorphic rocks we can see that formed about 1.8 billion years ago during a mountain building event known as the Big Sky Orogeny. The textures in these rocks are fascinating. They contained a variety of protolith lithologies, making them immediately complicated. They are highly deformed; so one lithology bends into another very rapidly.
8 June 2017
Here’s an intro to some of the rocks we’re actually mapping. On our first day in the field, we walked the section of rocks exposed in this area from oldest to the youngest rocks we had time to get to. Students were literally standing on 2.5 billion years or so of Earth’s history – more than half the time this planet has existed.
7 June 2017
Although the area where we’ve been mapping is pretty dry, dealing with wildlife in various forms has been pretty constant. This is potentially on my mind as today I set my personal best by peeling 6 ticks off of me. Our camp is pretty large and has broken into separate groups, each group shifting between different areas.
23 May 2017
Hello everyone! A group of AGU staff, including me, are in Japan for the inaugural JpGU-AGU joint meeting. We landed Friday afternoon and took a half-hour bus ride into Chiba where the meeting is being held.
2 March 2017
A new U.S. Geological Survey study offers a view into the past behavior of large earthquakes along the southern San Andreas Fault. In the study, USGS geologist Kate Scharer and her team excavated trenches across the fault near Frazier Mountain in northeastern Ventura County. This section of the San Andreas previously had no long paleoearthquake record. The researchers found evidence of 10 ground-rupturing earthquakes on this section of the fault between 800 A.D. and the last rupture in 1857.
16 February 2017
The submarine volcanism Chapman Conference is at an end, and by all means it was a success. We had 102 scientists from 13 countries, including 27 students, attend. Submarine volcanologists got to talk to subaerial volcanologists. We saw cool videos of scientists pouring lava over water and ice. We went on a field trip and saw seals and dolphins. We talked about lots and lots of volcanoes (I stopped counting at 27).
13 February 2017
After our morning of watching Tasmanian Devils tear apart scraps of meat and me trying desperately to take a selfie with a kangaroo, we finished the mid-conference field trip with a 3-hour eco-cruise around the Tasman Peninsula. The peninsula has some of the most beautiful coastline in the world, which includes some amazing exposed rock formations, which our group of geologists were all too happy to see.
9 January 2017
After a 25-meter drive on Sol 1574, Curiosity again has bedrock exposed in her arm workspace. To balance desires to sample the composition of the rocks along the traverse and to make good progress toward the south, contact science and another drive are both planned for Sol 1575.
15 November 2016
Geophysicists have compiled the most detailed maps yet of the geologic forces controlling the locations, types and magnitudes of earthquakes in Texas and Oklahoma. These new “stress maps” provide insight into the nature of the faults associated with recent temblors, many of which appear to have been triggered by the injection of wastewater deep underground.
21 September 2016
Utah’s iconic Rainbow Bridge hums with natural and man-made vibrations, according to a new study accepted for publication today in Geophysical Research Letters, a journal of the American Geophysical Union. The study found both natural waves in Lake Powell and induced earthquakes in Oklahoma cause the rock bridge to vibrate at different resonant frequencies.
14 September 2016
This is the third in a series of dispatches from Rebecca Fowler, a science writer documenting the work of scientists conducting fieldwork at the Atlin ophiolite in British Columbia.
8 September 2016
This is the second in a series of dispatches from Rebecca Fowler, a science writer documenting the work of scientists conducting fieldwork at the Atlin ophiolite in British Columbia.
2 September 2016
This is the first in a series of dispatches from Rebecca Fowler, a science writer documenting the work of scientists conducting fieldwork at the Atlin ophiolite in British Columbia.
5 April 2016
Erosion by summertime melt-driven streams on Greenland’s ice sheet shapes landscapes similarly to, but much faster, than do rivers on land, according to a new study. The approach used to study the drainage system of the ice sheet should serve to broaden the scientific understanding of melt rates and improve projections about ice sheet response to climate change, said Leif Karlstrom, a geologist at the University of Oregon in Eugene and lead author of the study.