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Tracking Tectonic Links Among Andean Mountains

Tomas Capaldi and Margo Odlum at the Precordillera Fold-Thrust Belt

Tomas Capaldi, a Ph.D. student who studies mountain building in the Argentine Andes with Professor Brian Horton, spent time this summer in Argentina conducting field work in the San Juan province two hours north of the city of Mendoza.

Margo Odlum with angular unconformity between Silurian olistostromes and Miocene conglomerates

His research involved studying Andean tectonic provinces and the respective sediment record during mountain building by conducting geologic mapping, measuring stratigraphic sections, and collecting rock samples for sediment provenance analysis. This actively deforming mountain belt has produced destructive earthquakes greater than 7.0-magnitude. The goal of his research is to understand the tectonic links among Andean mountain building and foreland basin evolution during Miocene to modern low-angle subduction of the Nazca oceanic plate.

Capaldi was assisted in the field by Margo Odlum, a Ph.D. student who studies Pyrenean tectonics with Professor Daniel Stockli. Distinguished Senior Lecturer Mark Helper and Jackson School Dean Sharon Mosher joined the group for a week to help map the geology around the seismically active Sierra Villicum and Sierra Pie de Palo ranges in San Juan, Argentina.

GeoFORCE Texas gives a Hook Em’ on Mt. Hood.

GeoFORCE Field Update

GeoFORCE Texas students on Mt. Hood in Oregon during a summer field trip. GeoFORCE is a unique outreach program of the Jackson School of Geosciences that helps high school students from disadvantaged areas in inner-city Houston and rural Southwest Texas pursue an education and career in the sciences, particularly the geosciences and engineering.