Igneous Petrology, Geophysics, Magma Dynamics
Magma is the vehicle by which most planetary differentiation takes place. The origin of continents as well as the origin of the magnetic field are intimately tied to the dynamics of magma. My research involves the physics and chemistry of the origin and evolution of magma, mainly silicate magma. We study magma from three vantage points: field, laboratory, and theory. We feel that the greatest, most fundamental discoveries come from walking the fine line between these fields, taking strength and insight from each. We have worked on volcanic and magmatic systems the world over, and presently have a considerable field program in the Dry Valley region of Antarctica. Present areas of research include the dynamics of crystal size distributions, the propagation and behavior of solidification fronts in sheet-like systems, and the emplacement of flow differentiated magmas. The main objective of this program is to train scholars who will fundamentally affect the course of science.