My Research

I take a multi-disciplinary approach to understand volcanic processes, combining computational skills (GIS, Python, MATLAB), laboratory analysis (SEM, EMPA, Raman Spectroscopy, melt inclusions, mineral chemistry, stable isotopes), and field geology to address questions concerning:

  • 1) the physical scale and measurement of volcanic processes
  • 2) the chemical and petrological processes controlling valuable metal concentrations in magmas and ore deposits
  • 3) chemical and magmatic budgets in subduction zones

Read on for more details about my different research projects concerning (1) slab dehydration and arc magmatism, (2) mineral mediation of copper contents, (3) chalcophile metal systematics in Indonesia, (4) large igneous provinces, and (5) seafloor volcanism.


Global Slab Dehydration Recorded in Arc Magmas

The transfer of material from subducting slabs to the overlying mantle is one of the most important chemical and tectonic processes regulating Earth’s geochemical cycles. One of the major processes involved in this material cycling is the de-volatilization of the slab. Our recent work, leveraging global arc magma trace element systematics (e.g. Ba/Nb, Th/Nb, Pb/Ce), allows us to pinpoint the characteristic depths of slab dehydration globally. This work involves the use of my recently published arc magma chemistry compilation ArcMetals, and the integration of datasets sourced from metamorphic petrology and geodynamic studies of subduction zones to interpret observed magmatic signals.

Collaborators: Prof. Marie Edmonds, Dr. Helen Williams, Dr. Frances Jenner


Amphibole control on copper systematics in arcs: Insights from the analysis of global datasets

In order to determine which magmatic processes control copper (Cu) abundance in the crust, we compiled a global, multi-factor database of arc magma chemistry, geology, and tectonics. Our model provides an example of the power of Big Data to determine fundamental processes in petrology. This work was originally presented at both the Volcano and Magmatic Studies Group (VMSG) meeting and the virtual Goldschmidt meeting in 2020. Our work was recently published in Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta – see below for a link!

Collaborators: Prof. Marie Edmonds, Dr. Helen Williams, Dr. Frances Jenner, Dr. Andréas Audetat


Metals in Magmas: Intra-Arc Variations in Volcanic Metals in East Java, Indonesia

I am leading a regional survey of magmatic chemistry in volcanoes across Java, Indonesia. This work combines textural, microanalytical, and isotope analyses in melt inclusions, individual minerals, and whole rock, to better constrain 1) the timing of sulphide vs. vapor saturation in magmas and 2) the optimal tectonic conditions for crustal Cu deposition. I developed this project in partnership with Universitas Gadjah Mada researchers based in Yogyakarta, ID.

Collaborators: Dr. Agung Harijoko, Dr. Haryo Edi Wibowo, Dr. Gayatri Marliyani, Dr. Esti Handini, Prof. Marie Edmonds, Dr. Helen Williams, Dr. Frances Jenner, Sophie Baldwin


How Big Is a Flood Basalt? Calculating the Volume of the Deccan Traps

We compiled and digitized existing geographic data on the thickness and extent of the Deccan Traps, using geographic information systems (GIS) and geostatistical tools to determine the pre- and post-erosional areas and volumes of lava packages. The goal is to provide a geospatially-grounded volume estimate that can inform accurate paleoclimate reconstruction in the Late Cretaceous.

Collaborators: Dr. Loÿc Vanderkluysen and Dr. Anne Jay


Tiltmeter Observations at Axial Seamount

Axial Seamount is the most active submarine volcano in the NE Pacific, located ~300 miles west of the Oregon Coast with a summit depth of 1500 meters. This project aimed to analyze the 3+ years of Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) tiltmeter data recorded before, during, and after the 2015 eruption to better understand the internal plumbing system at the volcano, using MATLAB software to visualize the caldera’ 3D deformation. This work has implications for improving monitoring forecasts at marine volcanoes.

Supervised by Dr. Bill Chadwick

%d bloggers like this: