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2 April 2019
A book by Nick Pyenson (of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History) details the past, present, and future of whales. Combining paleontology, oceanography, environmental awareness, evolution, and history with personal stories of field work and insight, it’s a compelling tale of modern science on charismatic, mysterious creatures.
22 August 2018
A reader asks: “What is foliation and what makes it so important to the structure of rock?”
Callan answers with a lot of images of beautifully foliated rocks.
25 May 2018
This is a block of rock I found in the rock garden at Northern Arizona University a few weeks ago: It’s intensely folded. Not sure what kind of rock it is, but it was quite dense.
26 March 2018
A solo hike in search of anticlines yields new outcrops and good views!
14 March 2018
New media to show off exemplary features of the Devonian-aged Hampshire Formation along Corridor H, West Virginia
Last week, I was in Morgantown, West Virginia, to deliver a colloquium talk to the geology department at West Virginia University of geological visualization. The next day, I took some time on the way home to geologize a bit on the road called Corridor H, a gorgeous transect through the eastern Allegheny Plateau and western Valley & Ridge provinces. I focused that day on the Hampshire Formation, Foreknobs Formation, and …
2 February 2018
The Friday fold is a really cool 3D model of differentially-weathered calc-silicate rocks in Scotland that were folded during the Caledonian Orogeny.
12 January 2018
In keeping with the Arizonarific theme of this week’s posts (thanks to my participation in the 2018 Structural Geology and Tectonics Forum), I thought I would wrap up my ‘geology of the Phoenix area‘ posts with a walk I took on my last day there. This was to what Google Maps calls “Hayden Butte,” but the locals call “A Mountain.” Not “a mountain,” but “the mountain called ‘A‘.” It has …
8 September 2017
I was transferring some samples into my structural geology cabinet last week when I found this beautiful ptygmatic (“intestine-like”) folded quartz vein. I thought it deserved some wider circulation. I can’t recall where it came from, but it’s beautiful, with a train of a dozen or so isoclinal folds. So I made the digital media you see below. Enjoy! Here’s a GIGAmacro of the sample (you need Flash enabled to …
9 August 2017
A showcase of five new 3D digital models of awesome rock samples and outcrops, produced using Agisoft Photoscan.
15 July 2017
I collected only a single rock on my summer travels in France and Italy. (Those of you who know me will realize how extraordinary this low number is!) It’s a flow-banded rhyolite from Vulcano, in the Aeolian Islands north of Sicily a few weeks ago. It contains porphyritic vesicular basalt xenoliths. I featured a similar sample on Twitter yesterday on the occasion (supposedly) of “International Rock Day”: For #InternationalRockDay , …