The new regional network, which replaces the Western U.P. Math and Science Center, has been established to form partnerships and strategies that promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and career pathways. These careers are often difficult to experience before a student reaches college when it becomes expensive to explore different career options. Presenting K-12 students with opportunities to experience hands-on STEM applications lets them consider these careers for themselves before making a college choice.
“I’m going out and communicating with anybody and everybody that does anything with science, technology, engineering and mathematics in the region, just trying to connect with all of them in order to create these new opportunities,” Gochis said.
Emily’s PhD advisor, John Gierke, had this to say about the new role that Emily will have in our region’s schools: “While we are certainly proud of Emily’s accomplishments that led to this appointment, we are very happy for the schools of the Western Upper Peninsula and the new opportunities that Emily will facilitate.” Gierke has worked with Emily since she completed her service as a Peace Corps Volunteer and notes that, “Her skills, creativity, and enthusiasm are vast. I am always amazed at her experience in teaching, research and service and how she puts those experiences together in building new educational programs and activities. We are certainly lucky that she is in this new role.”
Read more at the Daily Mining Gazette
Pictured: Emily Gochis as a PCV in El Salvador, contributing to our hazards research as car-battery sherpa. The batteries are used to power monitoring equipment on the volcanoes.
Kenneth Hinkel (GMES/EPSSI) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $75,436 research and development grant from the National Science Foundation. The project is titled “Collaborative Research: Causes and Consequences of Catastrophic Thermokarst Lake Drainage in an Evolving Arctic System.” This is a three-year project.
By Sponsored Programs.
Lakes are abundant features on coastal plains of the Arctic, providing important fish and wildlife habitat and water supply for villages and industry, but also interact with frozen ground (permafrost) and the carbon it stores. Most of these lakes are termed “thermokarst” because they form in ice-rich permafrost and gradually expand over time. The dynamic nature of thermokarst lakes also makes them prone to catastrophic drainage and abrupt conversion to wetlands, called drained thermokarst lake basins (DTLBs). Together, thermokarst lakes and DTLBs cover up to 80% of arctic lowland regions, making understanding their response to ongoing climate change essential for coastal plain environmental assessment.
Lauren N. Schaefer received both an MSc in Geology (International Geological Masters in Volcanology and Geotechniques, 2012) and a PhD in Geological Engineering as a NASA Earth and Space Science Fellow (2016) at Michigan Tech under the supervision of Dr. Thomas Oommen. Her dissertation investigated the potential for large-scale debris avalanches at Pacaya Volcano in Guatemala to optimize future monitoring and mitigation efforts. A combination of experimental rock mechanics, field investigations, remote sensing, and numerical modeling not only detected, but revealed the nature and mechanics of the largest landslide surge witnessed in a single event at a volcano. Her dissertation provided rare insight into precursory deformation prior to a potential future catastrophic collapse at an active volcano. Such an event was witnessed at Mount St. Helens in 1980, and is known to have occurred at over 400 volcanoes worldwide.
Currently, Lauren is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand, where she continues to research landslide and volcanic hazards.
On June 3, 2018, torrents of hot ash, rock, and gas poured down ravines and stream channels on the slopes of Volcán de Fuego—Guatamala’s Volcano of Fire. More than three weeks after the eruption, the Landsat 8 satellite continued to detect elevated temperatures in some of the pyroclastic flow deposits.
“Fuego left pyroclastic flow deposits that cooled down quickly at the surface but are still very hot inside,” explained Michigan Technological University volcanologist Rüdiger Escobar-Wolf. “Cooling deposits can show surface temperatures above the background level for a long time—weeks, or even months. However, that temperature may be only slightly above the background level, as the heat from the interior slowly seeps out of the deposit to the surface.”
Rudiger Escobar-Wolf (GMES) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $115,024 research and development grant from the National Science Foundation.
Simon Carn (GMES) and Michigan Tech alumna Lizette Rodriguez Iglesias, PhD ’07, are Co/PIs on the project “RAPID: Lethal Pyroclastic Density Current (PDC) Generation and Transport at Fuego Volcano.” This is a one-year project.
This Rapid Research Response (RAPID) award will be used to better understand the deadly eruption at Fuego volcano (Guatemala) on June 3rd, 2018, and in particular the pyroclastic density currents (PDCs) that caused the fatalities. How those PDCs initiated, what caused them to move that far, and what could be the conditions under which they may form in the future, are all poorly understood issues. By looking at the PDCs deposit, mapping them and study their stratigraphy in the field, analyzing the the chemical, petrological, and physical characteristics (density and vesicularity, grain size distribution, etc.), and by using numerical models to understand their flowing dynamics, this team hopes to be able to tell where the PDCs material came from, and how it was fragmented and transported. They will also look at geophysical and geochemical monitoring data leading up and during the eruption, particularly from the local seismic network and satellite remote sensing data, to characterize other aspects of the eruption as well (eruption intensity and duration) and put the PDC information in that context. This knowledge will improve our understanding of the formation of this kind of PDCs, particularly at basaltic volcanoes like Fuego, and could be relevant to many other similar volcanoes worldwide and in the US.
The topics are showcased in their new book, How the Rock Connects Us: A Geoheritage Guide to Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula and Isle Royale, published by the Isle Royale Natural History Association, Incorporated, Nov 24, 2017 – 64 pages. ISBN 0935289216, 9780935289213
Interested in exploring the geology of the Keweenaw and Isle Royale this summer? Join Erika Vye and Bill Rose to learn about exciting geosites in our area, upcoming tours, and how to navigate their new geoheritage field guide. Daniel Lizzadro-McPherson will also join to showcase a Story Map he developed highlighting Isle Royale geology during a National Park Service Geoscientist in the Park internship. The book will be available for sale, and proceeds from this sale will support library services.
This event is sponsored by the Friends of the Calumet Public Library.
The book signing and presentation will take place at on Wednesday, June 27, 2018, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Calumet Public Library.
Calumet Public Library
57070 Mine St.
906-337-0311 ext. 1107
Greg Waite (GMES) was among the “Outstanding Reviewers of 2017” named by Eos, Earth & Space Science News. According to the American Geophysical Union (AGU), the reviewers listed “have all provided in-depth evaluations, often over more than one round of revision, that greatly improved the final published papers. This increase in complexity, in turn, has increased the challenge and the role of reviewing.”
Winning reviewers were selected by the editors of each journal for their work. Editor M. Bayani Cardenas cited Waite for his service to Geophysical Research Letters.
Quality peer review is thus a critical part of the social contract between science and society.
Simon Carn (GMES/EPSSI) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $27,883 research and development grant from the University of Maryland-The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
The project is titled “Extending NASA’s EOS SO2 and NO2 Data Records from Auro/OMI to Suomi NPP/OMPS.”
This is the first year of a potential three-year project totaling $96,614.
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Ted Bornhorst, executive director of the A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum, attended the 64th annual meeting of the Institute on Lake Superior Geology held May 15 to 18, 2018, in Iron Mountain. Bornhorst gave a presentation during the technical sessions titled “The youngest magmatic activity of the Midcontinent rift at Bear Lake, Keweenaw Peninsula, Michigan.”
The presentation was co-authored by Evgeniy Kulakov, University of Oslo, Chad Deering (GMES) and Jim Moore. Bornhorst also served on the 2018 institute’s board of directors that met during the meeting. Darlene Comfort, Office of the Vice President of Administration, served as registrar for the meeting through the museum.
Michigan Tech Alumnus Michael Neumann, a director with New Age Metals, was featured in the article “New Age Metals—Developing PGM and Lithium Properties in Canada,” in Investing News Network.
Neumann graduated in 1981 with a Mining Engineering degree from Michigan Tech. He has been Proprietor of Neumann Engineering and Mining Services, Inc. since 1993.
New Age Metals Inc. is a green metals exploration company currently developing its flagship River Valley platinum group metals property in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada.
Simon Carn (GMES) was quoted in the article “Sulfur Dioxide Leaks from Kilauea” in Earth Observatory. The article looks at the impact of the eruption and lava flow from the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii.
Sulfur Dioxide Leaks from Kilauea
Kilauea has been erupting continuously since 1983, but in late April and early May 2018 the volcanic eruption took a dangerous new turn.
In addition to seismic activity and deformation of the land surface, another sign of volcanic activity is increased emission of sulfur dioxide (SO2), a toxic gas that occurs naturally in magma.
“Interpreting the satellite SO2 data for events like this is complicated because there are multiple SO2 sources that combine to form the volcanic sulfur dioxide plume,” said Simon Carn, a volcanologist at Michigan Tech.
In the News
Simon Carn (GMES) was quoted in the article “The lava striking the sea is gorgeous — and can be deadly,” in The Verge. Carn commented on the results when lava from a volcano strikes seawater. The story was picked up by several media outlets including the Las Vegas News and Dotemirates.
Simon Carn (GMES), was quoted in the article “Kilauea Lava Flows Hit the Ocean, Creating Toxic Acid Steam Clouds” which looks at the effects of lava from the Kilauea Volcano hitting the ocean. Research from Michigan Tech regarding the volcano was mentioned in Radio Canada.