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Read the 2014 Newsletter - A tradition since 1950, the Newsletter highlights research, news and achievements by Jackson School faculty, students, scientists and alumni

Read the 2014 Newsletter

A tradition since 1950, the Newsletter highlights research, news and achievements by Jackson School faculty, students, scientists and alumni

Video: GeoFORCE - Changing lives since 2005

Video: GeoFORCE

Changing lives since 2005

Video: Unveiling Earth's Surface - Airborne lidar at the Jackson School's Bureau of Economic Geology

Video: Unveiling Earth's Surface

Airborne lidar at the Jackson School's Bureau of Economic Geology

Video: Preserving Stories From the Rocks - Bureau of Economic Geology core facility is vital for research and exploration

Video: Preserving Stories From the Rocks

Bureau of Economic Geology core facility is vital for research and exploration

Video: Fire, Ice & Huge Quantity of Potential Energy - Researchers at the Jackson School of Geosciences are leading a project to learn more about frozen methane under the Gulf of Mexico

Video: Fire, Ice & Huge Quantity of Potential Energy

Researchers at the Jackson School of Geosciences are leading a project to learn more about frozen methane under the Gulf of Mexico

Video: New Stash of Ice Age Fossils

Video: New Stash of Ice Age Fossils

Editor’s Note: This is part of a series of Q-and-A’s with UT’s deans. This interview has been edited and condensed. Sharon Mosher has been dean of the Jackson School of Geosciences since 2009. The Daily Texan: Can you tell us a...

MAR
05

Tech Sessions Speaker Series: Owen A Anfinson
4:00 PM

Tech Sessions Speaker Series: Owen A Anfinson

  Start: March 5, 2015 at 4:00 pm     End: March 5, 2015 at 5:00 pm

MAR
05

BEG Seminar
10:30 AM

Tech Sessions Speaker Series: Owen A Anfinson

  Start: March 5, 2015 at 4:00 pm     End: March 5, 2015 at 5:00 pm

BEG Seminar

  Start: March 5, 2015 at 10:30 am     End: March 5, 2015 at 11:30 am
 Location:BEG Main Conference Room; Building 130; PRC Campus
 Contact:Sophia Ortiz, sophia.ortiz@beg.utexas.edu, 512.475.9588
 URL:Event Link
William W. Simpkins
Professor and Chair, Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences
Smith Family Foundation Departmental Chair in Geology
Iowa State University

Abstract:
Enteric viruses have been observed in the Ames aquifer, an alluvial/buried valley aquifer composed of sand and gravel that supplies drinking water to Ames, Iowa (pop. 59,000). The focus of this study was the Downtown well field, where continuous pumping induces flow from the South Skunk River (SSR) nearly 1.4 km away into the well field. Because the SSR watershed contains 13 wastewater treatment plants and 109 swine CAFOs upstream, it was hypothesized that enteric viruses of both human and animal origin could be drawn into the well field by induced infiltration. The experimental design consisted of four sampling sites along a groundwater flow path at distances of 3.1 m to 2 km from the SSR. Velocity estimates predict that viruses would travel to Site D at the farthest point within two years. Fifty samples were collected and analyzed for adenovirus, enterovirus, norovirus, rotavirus, Bacteroides, and Hepatitis E virus (HEV), as well as Cl, ?18O, and ?2H, during seven sampling events (October 2011 to October 2012). Untreated sewage was sampled twice. Viruses were analyzed using real-time qPCR and RT-qPCR methods. At least one virus was detected in 42% of the samples, with groundwater showing detections in 39% of samples in the unconfined part of the aquifer next to the SSR and in 28% of the samples in the confined part of the aquifer. Adenovirus Subgroup A and HEV were the most frequently detected. Sewage samples showed the highest concentrations of adenovirus subgroups A and C, D, F, but contained no HEV. Sequencing showed adenovirus A31 to be the only serotype in the SSR and sewage; G3 HEV was the only genotype present and only in the SSR. This evidence suggests that the SSR is the source of G3 HEV (likely a swine source) and adenovirus A31 (human source) in the aquifer, thus confirming the original hypothesis about groundwater transport via induced infiltration. The occurrence of G1 norovirus and Campylobacter jejuni in two municipal wells, but not in the SSR, suggests possible entry through leaks in the sanitary sewer systems and/or well casing. In the case of enteric viruses in the Downtown well field, human enteric viruses come both river and sanitary sewer sources, while animal enteric viruses appear to come solely from the South Skunk River.

MAR
06

BEG Friday Seminar Series
9:00 AM

Tech Sessions Speaker Series: Owen A Anfinson

  Start: March 5, 2015 at 4:00 pm     End: March 5, 2015 at 5:00 pm

BEG Seminar

  Start: March 5, 2015 at 10:30 am     End: March 5, 2015 at 11:30 am
 Location:BEG Main Conference Room; Building 130; PRC Campus
 Contact:Sophia Ortiz, sophia.ortiz@beg.utexas.edu, 512.475.9588
 URL:Event Link
William W. Simpkins
Professor and Chair, Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences
Smith Family Foundation Departmental Chair in Geology
Iowa State University

Abstract:
Enteric viruses have been observed in the Ames aquifer, an alluvial/buried valley aquifer composed of sand and gravel that supplies drinking water to Ames, Iowa (pop. 59,000). The focus of this study was the Downtown well field, where continuous pumping induces flow from the South Skunk River (SSR) nearly 1.4 km away into the well field. Because the SSR watershed contains 13 wastewater treatment plants and 109 swine CAFOs upstream, it was hypothesized that enteric viruses of both human and animal origin could be drawn into the well field by induced infiltration. The experimental design consisted of four sampling sites along a groundwater flow path at distances of 3.1 m to 2 km from the SSR. Velocity estimates predict that viruses would travel to Site D at the farthest point within two years. Fifty samples were collected and analyzed for adenovirus, enterovirus, norovirus, rotavirus, Bacteroides, and Hepatitis E virus (HEV), as well as Cl, ?18O, and ?2H, during seven sampling events (October 2011 to October 2012). Untreated sewage was sampled twice. Viruses were analyzed using real-time qPCR and RT-qPCR methods. At least one virus was detected in 42% of the samples, with groundwater showing detections in 39% of samples in the unconfined part of the aquifer next to the SSR and in 28% of the samples in the confined part of the aquifer. Adenovirus Subgroup A and HEV were the most frequently detected. Sewage samples showed the highest concentrations of adenovirus subgroups A and C, D, F, but contained no HEV. Sequencing showed adenovirus A31 to be the only serotype in the SSR and sewage; G3 HEV was the only genotype present and only in the SSR. This evidence suggests that the SSR is the source of G3 HEV (likely a swine source) and adenovirus A31 (human source) in the aquifer, thus confirming the original hypothesis about groundwater transport via induced infiltration. The occurrence of G1 norovirus and Campylobacter jejuni in two municipal wells, but not in the SSR, suggests possible entry through leaks in the sanitary sewer systems and/or well casing. In the case of enteric viruses in the Downtown well field, human enteric viruses come both river and sanitary sewer sources, while animal enteric viruses appear to come solely from the South Skunk River.

BEG Friday Seminar Series

  Start: March 6, 2015 at 9:00 am     End: March 6, 2015 at 10:00 am
 Location:BEG Main Conference Room; Building 130; PRC Campus
 Contact:Sophia Ortiz, sophia.ortiz@beg.utexas.edu, 512.475.9588
 URL:Event Link
John R. Dribus
Global Geosciences Advisor
Schlumberger

Abstract:
Since the Macondo incident occurred in the Gulf of Mexico, the oil and gas industry has been diligent in following a three-step approach to addressing various drilling hazards that may be encountered in deep water: Identification, Prevention, and Mitigation. This presentation focuses on the important step of understanding the geologic origin of various hazards in deep water and around salt by reviewing the geologic origin, characteristics, and behaviors of the three deep water hazard types:

1. Man-made surface hazards including linear geometry and single site geometry hazards.
2. Sea-floor hazards including pockmarks, mud volcanoes, and mass sediment movement.
3. Sub-surface geologic hazards including shallow water flows, reactivated faults, and gas chimneys.

In addition, various potential drilling hazards may also be encountered when drilling massive salt and layered evaporates to reach prospective targets below. These challenges may occur when drilling:
1. Into the top of an allochthonous salt canopy (cap rock issues),
2. Through massive salt and layered evaporite complexes (including sediment inclusions, salt-to-salt sutures, and mobile layered evaporates), and
3. Emerging from salt or evaporites (including rubble zones, feeders, mobile bitumen) and other potential hazards.

MAR
06

UTIG Seminar Series: Brandon Schmandt, University of New Mexico
2:00 PM

Tech Sessions Speaker Series: Owen A Anfinson

  Start: March 5, 2015 at 4:00 pm     End: March 5, 2015 at 5:00 pm

BEG Seminar

  Start: March 5, 2015 at 10:30 am     End: March 5, 2015 at 11:30 am
 Location:BEG Main Conference Room; Building 130; PRC Campus
 Contact:Sophia Ortiz, sophia.ortiz@beg.utexas.edu, 512.475.9588
 URL:Event Link
William W. Simpkins
Professor and Chair, Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences
Smith Family Foundation Departmental Chair in Geology
Iowa State University

Abstract:
Enteric viruses have been observed in the Ames aquifer, an alluvial/buried valley aquifer composed of sand and gravel that supplies drinking water to Ames, Iowa (pop. 59,000). The focus of this study was the Downtown well field, where continuous pumping induces flow from the South Skunk River (SSR) nearly 1.4 km away into the well field. Because the SSR watershed contains 13 wastewater treatment plants and 109 swine CAFOs upstream, it was hypothesized that enteric viruses of both human and animal origin could be drawn into the well field by induced infiltration. The experimental design consisted of four sampling sites along a groundwater flow path at distances of 3.1 m to 2 km from the SSR. Velocity estimates predict that viruses would travel to Site D at the farthest point within two years. Fifty samples were collected and analyzed for adenovirus, enterovirus, norovirus, rotavirus, Bacteroides, and Hepatitis E virus (HEV), as well as Cl, ?18O, and ?2H, during seven sampling events (October 2011 to October 2012). Untreated sewage was sampled twice. Viruses were analyzed using real-time qPCR and RT-qPCR methods. At least one virus was detected in 42% of the samples, with groundwater showing detections in 39% of samples in the unconfined part of the aquifer next to the SSR and in 28% of the samples in the confined part of the aquifer. Adenovirus Subgroup A and HEV were the most frequently detected. Sewage samples showed the highest concentrations of adenovirus subgroups A and C, D, F, but contained no HEV. Sequencing showed adenovirus A31 to be the only serotype in the SSR and sewage; G3 HEV was the only genotype present and only in the SSR. This evidence suggests that the SSR is the source of G3 HEV (likely a swine source) and adenovirus A31 (human source) in the aquifer, thus confirming the original hypothesis about groundwater transport via induced infiltration. The occurrence of G1 norovirus and Campylobacter jejuni in two municipal wells, but not in the SSR, suggests possible entry through leaks in the sanitary sewer systems and/or well casing. In the case of enteric viruses in the Downtown well field, human enteric viruses come both river and sanitary sewer sources, while animal enteric viruses appear to come solely from the South Skunk River.

BEG Friday Seminar Series

  Start: March 6, 2015 at 9:00 am     End: March 6, 2015 at 10:00 am
 Location:BEG Main Conference Room; Building 130; PRC Campus
 Contact:Sophia Ortiz, sophia.ortiz@beg.utexas.edu, 512.475.9588
 URL:Event Link
John R. Dribus
Global Geosciences Advisor
Schlumberger

Abstract:
Since the Macondo incident occurred in the Gulf of Mexico, the oil and gas industry has been diligent in following a three-step approach to addressing various drilling hazards that may be encountered in deep water: Identification, Prevention, and Mitigation. This presentation focuses on the important step of understanding the geologic origin of various hazards in deep water and around salt by reviewing the geologic origin, characteristics, and behaviors of the three deep water hazard types:

1. Man-made surface hazards including linear geometry and single site geometry hazards.
2. Sea-floor hazards including pockmarks, mud volcanoes, and mass sediment movement.
3. Sub-surface geologic hazards including shallow water flows, reactivated faults, and gas chimneys.

In addition, various potential drilling hazards may also be encountered when drilling massive salt and layered evaporates to reach prospective targets below. These challenges may occur when drilling:
1. Into the top of an allochthonous salt canopy (cap rock issues),
2. Through massive salt and layered evaporite complexes (including sediment inclusions, salt-to-salt sutures, and mobile layered evaporates), and
3. Emerging from salt or evaporites (including rubble zones, feeders, mobile bitumen) and other potential hazards.

UTIG Seminar Series: Brandon Schmandt, University of New Mexico

  Start: March 6, 2015 at 2:00 pm     End: March 6, 2015 at 3:00 pm
 Location:PRC, 10100 Burnet Road, Bldg 196, Rm 1.603, Austin, TX 78758
 Contact:Nick Hayman, hayman@ig.utexas.edu, 512-471-7721
 URL:Event Link
"Seismic Structure beneath EarthScope’s USArray and the Origin of the Yellowstone Hotspot"

Abstract:

The seismic component of the EarthScope program includes >2500 broadband seismographs progressively deployed across the contiguous United States since 2005. The resulting data facilitate seismic imaging from the crust to deep within the mantle and are providing new insights into convective processes beneath North America such as the sinking and fragmentation of the Farallon slab and mantle upwelling beneath areas of intraplate volcanism such as the Yellowstone hotspot. Recent imaging indicates that the heat source for Yellowstone magmatism is rooted in the lower mantle and a buoyant plume is rising through a gap between fragments of the Farallon slab. A relatively local increase in broadband seismograph coverage near Yellowstone has also improved imaging of the crustal scale magmatic system, which shows two concentrated low-velocity anomalies thought to represent melt reservoirs in the shallow and deep crust.

more →

Alumni - Tailgates, reunions and continuing education with your fellow alums
Tailgates, reunions and continuing education with your fellow alums
New Salt Tectonics Complex - Honoring Martin Jackson, raising funds towards a newly renovated Salt Tectonics Modeling Complex
Honoring Martin Jackson, raising funds towards a newly renovated Salt Tectonics Modeling Complex
Geoscience Education - Summit on Future of Undergraduate Geoscience Education: Summary Report & Survey
Summit on Future of Undergraduate Geoscience Education: Summary Report & Survey
GeoFORCE Challenge Match - This endowment has launched to ensure the continuation of this critical program
This endowment has launched to ensure the continuation of this critical program
Work at JSG - The Jackson School is hiring. Apply online.
The Jackson School is hiring. Apply online.
Find a Supervisor - Grad students work with over 70 scientists in 9 research disciplines
Grad students work with over 70 scientists in 9 research disciplines
 
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