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Research Day 2017

Research Day 2017 Flyer8th Annual C.S.U.F. Geological Sciences Research Day
April 26, 2016, Wednesday, 
3:00 PM - 6:00 PM 
At the Fullerton Arboretum, in Bacon Pavilion.

Food, Drinks, Research, Professional Contacts, Prizes!!!

Sponsored by C.S.U.F. Department of Geological Sciences and South Coast Geological Society

Student 2017 Research Day Packet

For more information download the flyer at the above link or contact Dr. Richard Laton (657) 278-7514 or E-mail: wlaton@fullerton.edu

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S.C.G.S. Poster Session

South Coast Geological Society

22ND ANNUAL S.C.G.S. POSTER SESSION

Greetings from S.C.G.S. to Southern California Geology Students!

SUBMIT YOUR POSTER TO COMPETE FOR CASH AWARDS! The South Coast Geological Society is pleased to announce our 22nd annual student poster session scheduled for the evening of November 7th at our regular meeting location (7 Hudson Centre, Santa Ana). The contest is open to undergraduate/graduate students pursuing geologic science degrees at a southern California college or university. It’s a casual forum for students and professional geologists to share knowledge, experience and ideas.

Participants are asked to submit one reasonable-size poster summarizing recent work (including completed, active, or proposed theses or senior projects) for display and judging at the meeting. As the event progresses, attendees and judges will wander the room to greet students and learn about the posters. Entrants will be allowed to provide a verbal explanation of their subjects as the evening proceeds. Judging will be conducted by a select panel of member geologists, followed by voting and announcement of the winners.

Cash prizes will be awarded as a percentage of the money pool, to include 1st ($50%), 2nd ($30%) and 3rd ($20%) place winnings. S.C.G.S. has established an initial cash pool of $1,000.00. We are requesting members and/or their employers contribute small donations to increase the prize pool, in hopes of boosting the final purse total. Donations can be submitted to SCGS Treasure, Corey Stout (shaggystout13@aol.com), or, at the door on the evening of the event.

A hosted-bar will be available inside the room to wet your whistle, along with a buffet meal and general seating. Please complete the Poster Session Application on our website www.southcoastgeo.org website. Any questions can be submitted to hull@geoconinc.com

The official deadline for Entry is NOVEMBER 2ND. Please enter as soon as possible to help us better plan the event.
HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE! 


Research Day 2016

ResearchDayflyer20167th Annual C.S.U.F. Geological Sciences Research Day
April 22, 2016, Friday,
3:00 PM - 6:00 PM
At the Fullerton Arboretum, in Bacon Pavilion.

Food, Drinks, Research, Professional Contacts, Prizes!!!

Sponsored by C.S.U.F. Department of Geological Sciences and South Coast Geological Society

View pictures.

Abstracts program download: Print version(4.84MB), mobile version(2.75MB)

Download Flyer newwindow

Download Abstract Instructions newwindow

For more information download the flyer at the above link or contact Dr. Richard Laton (657) 278-3054 or E-mail: wlaton@fullerton.edu

South Coast Geological Society Logo


 

2016 Research Day Student Awards

Congratulations to the 2016 Research Day award winners! A huge thank you to South Coast Geological Society! View more pictures from Reseaerch Day.

Undergraduate Proposal - Dulce Cortez

Faculty Advisor, Dr. Joe Carlin

INVESTIGATING SPATIAL AND TEMPORAL VARIATIONS IN SEDIMENTATION ON INTERTIDAL MUDFLATS

dulcecortezAwardEstuaries are valuable ecosystems throughout southern California, but are extremely vulnerable to changes in sea level rise (SLR), and sediment fluxes among other stressors. In southern California, for  example,  the  estuaries  are  predominantly  salt  marsh-tidal  flat  systems  that  are  affected  by increases  in  SLR,  and  significantly  impacted  by  urbanization.    These  human  activities  modify sediment fluxes to the estuary, and introduce pollutants to the water that impact the organisms and habitats throughout the salt marshes. Naturally, salt marshes are highly productive habitats, and efficient  sediment  traps.  This  combination  of  authigenic  sediment  from  plant  material,  and allogenic sediment is critical to help these ecosystems maintain their elevation relative to SLR.  If salt marshes cannot keep pace with SLR, then these critical habitats for a variety of organisms will be  lost  to  marine  inundation.    Southern  California  salt  marshes  have  developed  over  the  past ~4,000 years, when SLR averaged 0.8 mm/yr.  Over the past several decades however, SLR has increased dramatically due to climate change.  In Upper Newport Bay (UNB) in Orange County, for example, average SLR has been  >2 mm/yr since 1950. Therefore, can UNB salt marshes keep pace with accelerated SLR?  This project will focus on determining mudflat sedimentation rates on seasonal time scales in UNB to better understand the timing of sediment delivery. I will analyze two short-lived radioisotopes (234Th and 7Be, 24 and 53 day half-lives respectively) in sediment cores from mudflats over different seasons to determine the seasonal trends in sedimentation.  Each season I will collect 3 cores from the same locations, two near the fresh water inputs at the head of the bay, and one near the marine end member near the mouth.  This will allow me to characterize sedimentation  both  spatially  and  temporally.  Additionally,  I  will  measure  suspended  sediment concentrations  in  the  water  column  seasonally  from  the  three  dominant  inputs  into  the  bay  to compare sediment fluxes in the water to the sedimentation rates on the mudflats. I hypothesize that more  sediment  will  be  delivered  during  the  winter  as  a  result  of  high-energy  events,  with  the highest  deposition  rates  observed  in  the  northeastern  part  of  the  bay  proximal  to  the  largest freshwater and sediment input. Overall, this project will give us a better understanding of when sediment  is  delivered  to  the  mudflats,  which  may  help  better  manage  the  system  in  the  face  of future increases in SLR.

Undergraduate Thesis - Sierra Patterson

Faculty Advisor, Dr. Vali Memeti

LOCATING THE VOLCANIC SOURCE ROCK OF PREHISTORIC COGGED STONES FROM SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: WERE THEY CARVED FROM EL MODENA AND SANTA ROSA BASALTS?

pattersonAwardCog stones, hand-size Native American artifacts carved in the shape of cogs, have only been found  in  Orange  County,  CA  and  are  dominantly  made  of  basaltic  scoria.  The  use  of  cog  stones  is unknown with ca. 40 different potential uses proposed to date. The purpose of this study is to identify the  volcanic  source  location  from  which  the  cog  stones  were  carved.  This  may  help  reveal  the significance of the cog stones to 6000-3500 BC Native Americans.

To identify the source location of basaltic cog stones four cog stones fragments unearthed in Orange County were used for analysis. We focused on two potential source locations: the El Modena volcanics, which have been previously suggested as a likely source for the cog stones, and the nearby Santa   Rosa   volcanics   in   Riverside   County.   Petrographic   observations   and   whole   rock   XRF geochemistry  are  used  to  compare  the  cog  stones  with  the  potential  source  samples.  Given  the variability in the composition of basaltic cog stones, it is unlikely that all cog stones are from the same volcanic source.

Preliminary results from petrographic analysis of thin sections of the cog stones show that they have porphyritic texture and are composed of mainly plagioclase laths with varying amounts of ortho- and  clinopyroxene,  olivine,  opaque  minerals,  and  iddingsite.  Petrographic  analysis  of  Santa  Rosa basalt has the same mineralogical composition and texture as cog stone CS3. We are further testing this potential match through XRF analysis. Mineralogy and texture of the El Modena basalts do not resemble that of any of the cog stones analyzed, however XRF analyses of two El Modena samples suggest  similar  geochemical  compositions  to  CS2.  They  contain  ca.  55  wt.%  SiO2,  20-21  wt.%  of Al2O3, 5-6.5 wt.% Fe2O3, 8-9 wt.% of CaO,  and  similar trace element concentrations,  e.g. 200-230 ppm  Zr,  320-400  ppm  Ba,  16-20  ppm  Nb,  and  600-700  ppm  Sr.  El  Modena  basalt  has  smaller plagioclase  exhibiting  a  sieve  structure,  lower  vesicle  and  matrix  abundance,  and  does  not  contain clinopyroxene and olivine. More analyses are underway to further examine these relationships. If we can confirm that both El Modena and Santa Rosa volcanics were sourced to carve cogged stones, it would suggest that Native Americans collected these rocks perhaps because they were soft to carve and found nearby; the collection site may have not been important.

Graduate Proposal - Kalie Duccini

Faculty Advisor, Dr. Diane Clemens-Knott

OLIVINE-PLAGIOCLASE-PYROXENE CUMULATES ASSOCIATED WITH THE HORNBLENDE-RICH SUMMIT GABBRO: EARLY STAGES OF DIFFERENTIATION WITHIN THE LATE JURASSIC SIERRA NEVADA ARC

ducciniAwardGeochemical analyses of rare olivine-bearing rocks associated with the ca. 150 Ma Summit gabbro are scrutinized with the goal of revealing initial differentiation trajectories of mafic magmas within the  Late  Jurassic  Sierra  Nevada  arc.  Small  plutons  of  the  hornblende-rich  Summit  gabbro  are distributed across the Kern Plateau. This unit displays significant textural variation from pegmatitic to aphanitic-porphyritic textures, the latter suggestive of a transition to shallow emplacement levels. The Summit  gabbro  typically  has  a  low  Mg#  (~50),  and  rarely  contains  pyroxene,  let  alone  olivine.  So while amongst the most mafic rocks exposed in the Sierra Nevada batholith, the Summit Gabbro is not a primitive, mantle-derived magma. Hornblende-bearing anorthosite adcumulates associated with the  Summit  gabbro  contain  interlocking,  zoned  plagioclase  having  euhedral,  calcic  cores.  Meso-  to orthocumulates   contain   cumulate   olivine,   orthopyroxene   and   plagioclase   with   up   to   ~35% intercumulus, poikiolitic hornblende. In some cumulates, multi-shell coronas separate adjacent olivine and  plagioclase  crystals:  a  talc-oxide  assemblage  surrounds  or  completely  replaces  the  olivine;  an amphibole-spinel  symplectite  shell  abuts  the  plagioclase;  and  an  intervening  orthopyroxene  shell  is commonly replaced by amphibole. We interpret the corona textures as having formed by solid-state recrystallization during decompression of olivine-plagioclase autoliths or xenoliths, carried upwards from  the  deep  crust  by  pulses  of  the  Summit  gabbro.  The  possibility  that  Summit  gabbro  magmas traversed the deep arc crust is supported by mantle-like, high-Mg# (~96.5, n=3) olivine compositions found in a single olivine-porphyritic dike. In contrast, we hypothesize that corona-free, olivine-bearing gabbros completed crystallization in the upper crust and represent relatively undifferentiated samples of mantle-derived magma. Geochemical compositions of cumulate rocks and mineral phases will be used  to  characterize  the  olivine-plagioclase-pyroxene  cumulates  and  evaluate  their  origin  in  the context of the Summit gabbro. Future analysis of olivine-plagioclase-pyroxene-bearing cumulates will be aimed at attempting to characterize the mantle source region of this part of the Sierra Nevada arc.

Graduate Thesis - Angela Aranda

Faculty Advisor, Dr. Joe Carlin

SALT MARSH EVOLUTION ALONG AN ACTIVE FAULT ZONE: UNDERSTANDING MARSH RESPONSE AND RECOVERY TO RAPID CHANGES IN SEA LEVEL DUE TO COSEISMIC SUBSIDENCE

arandaawardLess than 10% of California’s salt marshes are located in southern California, and these represent only a fraction of the historical marsh area that was lost to urbanization in the region.  The tectonic nature of  the  region  adds  additional  stress  for  marshes  situated  near  active  fault  zones,  which  may  be susceptible  to  rapid  changes  in  elevation,  e.g.  coseismic  subsidence,  during  an  earthquake.  While marshes globally are under increasing stress from sea level rise (SLR), a better understanding of how southern  California  marshes  respond  to  and  recover  from  rapid  relative  SLR  caused  by  coseismic subsidence may help to better understand the future sustainability of marshes in this region and others. The purpose of this study  was to quantify marsh  recovery following  coseismic subsidence to better understand marsh resiliency from rapid SLR. The study area was the Seal Beach Wetlands (SBW), a marsh that straddles the Newport-Inglewood Fault Zone. A sediment core from the SBW was analyzed using  sedimentary,  geochemical,  and  biogeochemical  analyses,  including:  magnetic  susceptibility (MS),  grain size, loss-on-ignition (LOI), lignin biomarkers, δ13C, and C:N ratios.  Sedimentary  age constraints  were  determined  throughout  the  core  from 14C  and 137Cs  geochronology.  From  these analyses, we identified five potential coseismic events that occurred  over the past ~2600 years. All sedimentary contacts interpreted as events showed a decrease in organic matter and a shift from marsh indicators to non-marsh indicators across the contact, while some contacts also showed increases in sand and MS. These contacts were thus interpreted as a facies shift from a marsh environment to a mudflat  or  subtidal  environment  indicating  rapid  subsidence.  After  an  event  occurred,  we  observed steady  marsh  recovery  as  the  resulting  facies  succession  reflected  typical  marsh  accretion  patterns. The inferred amount of subsidence was relatively small ~15-30 cm (minimum estimates) within the tidal  range  for  the  marsh  and  the  data  suggested  that  this  area  of  the  marsh  made  a  full  recovery following each event. During this recovery period, the data also suggested that the marsh consistently accreted at a rate comparable to relative SLR. The result of this study suggested when subsidence is less than the tidal range, marsh recovery will follow sea level rise with the likelihood of the marsh making  a  full  recovery  determined  by  the  amount  of  subsidence  and  the  frequency  of  events.  This study highlights the resiliency of marshes in response to rapid changes in sea level, provided time and sediment availability.


G.S.A. Ontario, CA

GSA2016Group

The department of Geological Sciences had a great showing at the Geological Society meeting at Ontario, California in April, 2016.

Two students awarded best posters for undergraduate and graduate.

SCAR01 300H

Isaac Magallanes was awarded best undergraduate poster for his poster entitled THE MOST COMPLETE FOSSIL WALRUS FROM SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA PROVIDES INSIGHTS ON PATTERNS OF WALRUS DIVERSITY THROUGH TIME

SCAR07 300H

Gabe Santos was awarded best graduate poster for his poster entitled DESCRIPTION OF THE SEDIMENTOLOGY AND TAPHONOMY OF THE LATE UINTAN TALEGA BONEBED FROM ORANGE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA

Congratulations to Isaac and Gabe on these awards, and to the Parham lab for continuing to produce excellent and engaged students.

View more pictures.