Our research primarily focuses on deep continental crust, specifically the physical and chemical processes associated with rock deformation. I pursue questions such as: How do variations in mechanical properties, chemical composition or mineral reactions due to changing pressure, temperature, and water availability impact where and on what scale deformation occurs? How do these processes influence the physical properties of the crust? How do they influence our ability to remotely image the structure of tectonic plates through geophysical methods? What do the intrinsic characteristics and evolutionary tendencies of these rocks imply about the growth, modification and/or stabilization of the continents? With these questions in mind, I generally group our research efforts into the following topical areas of deep crustal evolution: 1) deep crustal rheology, 2) seismic and density properties, and 3) accessory mineral petrogenesis.

Shear zones and rock rheology

Shear fracture in deep crustal mylonite, Canada

Proterozoic tectonics in the Western U.S.

Geologic map, northern Madison Range, Montana

Geological perspectives on seismic anisotropy

Bergell pluton sampling (top) and EBSD map and photo of gabbro mylonite (bottom)

Crustal structure and properties from xenoliths

Crustal profile w/xenoliths & seismic

Accessory mineral petrogenesis

Monazite in Colorado Plateau xenoliths

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