Department News

Tikoo explores origins of mysterious "lunar swirls"

Tikoo SwirlsRecently published in JGR-Planets is a new joint University of California, Berkeley (Dr. Doug Hemingway) and Rutgers University (Prof. Sonia Tikoo) study that explores the origins of lunar swirls. Lunar swirls are enigmatic bright and dark patterns on the lunar surface that that resemble clouds or squiggles. The geometry of the optical anomalies associated with swirls resemble the predicted morphologies of magnetic field lines emanating from a subsurface geological source body. Indeed, most swirls are also co-located with strong localized magnetic fields within the lunar crust, suggesting that the magnetic fields play a role in producing the swirl markings, either by solar wind standoff or electromagnetic sorting of fine grains within the lunar regolith. In their paper, Hemingway and Tikoo describe how the magnetic sources of lunar swirl source bodies should ideally be narrow and shallow - a morphology consistent with magmatic dikes or buried lava tubes in the lunar subsurface.

To learn more, read the full Rutgers Today story here.

Yu wins Cushman Foundation, GSA awards

Mark Yu 2018Congratulations to Mark Yu (third year Ph.D. student), who received two research awards this summer. The William V. Sliter Research Award is sponsored by the Cushman foundation for foraminiferal research. Mark also received a Geological Society of America Graduate Research award. Mark’s work focuses on understanding the dynamics in the tropical thermocline waters of the Indian Ocean during the late Pleistocene. At play is separating the relative influences to the central equatorial Indian Ocean from the subantarctic mode waters from the Arabian Sea unpwelling.

Read more: Yu wins Cushman Foundation, GSA awards

Adamo embarks on PolarTREK in the Alps

1200x400 PolarTREC

Our very own Dr. Lauren Neitzke Adamo has been selected for a PolarTREC Expedition to the Swiss Alps to study the sliding rate of glaciers!

PolarTREC (Teachers and Researchers Exploring and Collaborating) is a program that selects formal and informal educators to spend 3 to 6 weeks participating in hands-on research in the Arctic and Antarctic with the goal of increasing interest and awareness of polar science. The program, funded by the Arctic Research Consortium of the United States (ARCUS), began about 10 years ago and has already provided more than 150 teachers with hands-on field research experience.

Read more: Adamo embarks on PolarTREK in the Alps

Hanafi wins 2 GSA research grants!

DSC 1428 crop02

Congratulations to EPS graduate student Bari Hanafi on being awarded 2 research grants from GSA! Hanafi received the ExxonMobil/GSA Student Geoscience Grant. ExxonMobil recognized 10 of the top 30 GSA student research grant proposals with grants of US$5000 each. Hanafi was also awarded a Structural Geology and Tectonics Division Graduate Research Grant. The GSA Structural Geology and Tectonic (SGT) division recognized 5 students whose proposals show exceptionally high merit in conception and presentation in their fields.

Read more: Hanafi wins 2 GSA research grants!

Setera wins GSA Lipman Award!

Setera is standing next to a wall of rocks.

Congratulations to EPS PhD student Jake Setera on winning a prestigious GSA Lipman Award! Setera was recognized for his proposal to study the thermal evolution of the Bushveld Igneous Complex in South Africa, which is the largest layered igneous intrusion identified in the Earth's crust. The GSA Lipman Award funding will allow Setera to learn a new technique, measuring U-Pb ages on apatite crystals, in collaboration with researchers at Princeton University.

Learn more about the Lipman Award and Setera's work here.

Rutgers faculty and students on the R/V Atlantis research cruise

Welcome Aboard the Research Vessel Atlantis, Cruise AT40-03

Welcome the not-so-regular daily blog we're keeping aboard the R/V Atlantis. "We" are 19 members of a science and technical team contributing to a research cruise that's the prelim to drilling by the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP). Images of seafloor topography and sub-seafloor layering we collect will enable us to choose sites to be drilled by the IODP, using the D/V JOIDES Resolution 2 to 3 years from now. That effort will recover records of Earth history that can be acquired in no other way than by putting out to sea and drilling hundreds of meters into the seafloor at key locations. We expect the sediments brought up from the depths will reveal ocean-atmosphere-biosphere interaction spanning the last 70 million years. The goal will be to improve knowledge of past climate variations and the factors that regulate the flow of deep ocean water that begins in the North Atlantic and circles the globe.

AtlantisAtlantis Image Courtesy of WHOI

Read more: Rutgers faculty and students on the R/V Atlantis research cruise

Miller, Browning receive GSA honors

Congratulations to Professors Ken Miller and Jim Browning on receiving honors from the Geological Society of America (GSA)! Miller was awarded the Laurence L. Sloss Award, in recognition of outstanding contributions to the interdisciplinary field of sedimentary geology. Browning was elected a Fellow of the Geological Society of America. Miller and Browning will be recognized at the 2018 GSA Annual Meeting in Indianapolis in November.

Ken and Jim

Mattos awarded AGU Horton Research Grant

Congratulations to EPS PhD student Caio Mattos on receiving a Horton Research Grant from the American Geophysical Union (AGU)! The grant is very competitive, and no more than three are awarded in a given year. The grant will support Caio to do field work in the Amazon over two field seasons. Well done, Caio!

For more information about the Horton Research Grant, please visit the following site:
https://honors.agu.org/research-grants-and-awards/the-horton-hydrology-research-grant/

Caio photo

EPS celebrates graduates at Commencement 2018

Rutgers University celebrated Graduation on May 13, 2018. The day was cold and rainy, but did not dampen spirits. EPS celebrated its Geological Sciences graduates (here taking shelter within the Rutgers Stadium at the SAS Convocation). Pictured are Bachelor's degree recipients Trevor Tibbrine, Tiffany Otai, Julie Fircha, Amy Bottge, Kyle Cusack, and Michael Debones, accompanied by Undergraduate Program Director Gail Ashley. Also receiving Bachelor's degrees were Orion Farr and Morris Peshtani. The following students also received Master's degrees from EPS during the past academic year: Rachel Filo, Gabe Gallegos, Michael Klaser, and Jon Lacarrubba.

EPS celebrates graduates at Commencement 2018