I run a very small group but the problems on which I work are varied.  Current questions in which I am interested include (please also see publications):

1) If we were standing on Mars viewing Earth through a telescope, with only these image data and a topographic map could we reliably determine that Earth is in an interglacial climate? 

2) Did the emergence of this plume and associated production of the Tharsis volcanic province ultimately annihilate the early core dynamo? 

3) How do we use remote sensing data (topography and imagery) to rigorously reconstruct the climate history of Mars using geomorphology?

4) Can climate change alter the tectonic style of terrestrial planets? How is this climate signal transmitted to the mantle? How does the mantle respond? 

5) How do basalt replenishments cause large crystal-rich silicic magma chambers to overturn and erupt catastrophically at the surface? How do we use observations from the geological record to constrain the key underlying processes governing these events?

6) Why does the inferred strength of hotpsot volcanism vary spatially over the Earth's surface? What are the implications for the structure of mantle plumes? Why is the Hawaiian hotspot getting stronger?

7) Why might partial melts occur and persist above the Earth's core-mantle boundary over geological time? What are the implications for the composition and thermal history of the mantle and the behaviour of Earth's core dynamo?

8) How do undersea eruptions and black smoker vents influence the chemistry and biodiversity of the deep ocean?

9) What is the origin of volcanic tremor that precedes explosive volcanism? Why is the character of this ground oscillation so consistent around the world?

10) What is the climatic footprint of a super continental cycle? How has the formation and destruction of supercontinents influence the evolution of Earth's atmosphere, ocean and biosphere?

11) How do volcanic eruptions drive climate variability on decadal to millennial time scales? How does climate variability affect volcanic eruptions?

12) How do turbulent entrainment and sedimentation processes affect the evolution, stability and longevity of volcanic jets? How do these processes modulate the longevity of volcanic clouds and govern aerosol production and climate forcing?

13) How do impulsive landslides, periodic glaciations and long-term landscape evolutionary processes modulate volcanism at arcs and ocean islands?

14) How do we upscale the processes governing the local morphodynamics of mountain streams to understand the evolution of landscapes? How does the evolution of landscapes affect the evolution of mountain streams, in turn?

15) What mechanics govern how much of the mantle supply of magma to continental crust is erupted or stored as magma reservoirs? Do these controls evolve as crust thickens or warms? Can we predict these magmatic “filtering” properties for other planets and to what extent to they paly a role in the production of atmospheres and habitable climates?

 

Student Opportunities: 

I look for graduate students with strong backgrounds in geology/volcanology/petrology/planetary science (with additional substantial coursework in math, physics and/or chemistry), astrophysics, physics or engineering, who love the challenge of independent research and who are fired up about working on problems in Earth and planetary science. I select for openly thoughtful, creative and challenging students who ask lots of questions and who like to play by their own rules.

I have no plans to accept new students for the fall of 2019. However, if you would like to argue your case, please email me.  Please include some discussion of the sorts of scientific questions/problems that you find interesting and why. I want to hear what you think. I want to hear also about what inspires you. If you have written papers or theses I would be keen to see them.  If you have other interests in addition to science I would like to hear about these as well.  If you have practical experience from working in a lab, a machine shop, a woodworking shop, on a construction site etc. or you just like to build things then please let me know. 

 

Postdoctoral Opportunities: 

Please email me. The tricky issue is always funding. Virtually all North American funding deadlines for proposals for postdoctoral fellowships in Canada are in September and October.