GSW 1534: Mercury, mineral dehydration, sloths

Meeting Number 1534

John Wesley Powell Auditorium, Cosmos Club, 2170 Florida Ave NW

Wednesday, October 24, 2018; Refreshments 7:30 pm; Meeting 8:00 pm


PETER VAN KEKEN, Carnegie Institution Linking metamorphic dehydration reactions with subduction zone earthquakes.
ROSEMARY KILLEN, NASA Mercury’s exosphere.
RYAN HAUPT, Smithsonian Institution Applying paleontological proxy methods to modern sloths: What can the odd mammal out tell us about their even odder fossil relatives?

Talks will be 20 minutes w/questions to follow. 

Future Meetings 2018: Nov 7; Dec 5 (Presidential address & annual meeting).
Know someone who would enjoy GSW? Consider inviting a colleague or friend to the meeting.
Minutes of the previous meeting are posted on the GSW website for review by members.
GSW website: <>

PGS: Krohn on land seismic data complexity

SEG Honorary Lecturer Dr. Christine Krohn will speak on:

The complexity just below our feet and the implications for the fidelity of land seismic data

Dr. Krohn will be speaking at the Potomac Geophysical Society meeting on November 8th at the Tysons Corner DoubleTree hotel.

Meeting Location:

  • DoubleTree by Hilton McLean Tysons
  • 1960 Chain Bridge Road, McLean, VA 22102
  • Hotel is located within one-half mile of the Tysons Corner Metro station, near I-495 and Rt. 123, and has free parking garage available
  • Our private meeting room is located at the back of the Harvest Café restaurant on the second floor of the hotel
  • Social time is typically held in O’Malley’s Pub on the first floor of the hotel


  • Members and guests may attend any presentation after dinner for no charge
  • The optional three course dinner cost is discounted to $30 for members in good standing (having paid dues) and for students, is $40 for non-members, and is inclusive of iced tea, coffee, tax and gratuity
  • Alcoholic beverages may be purchased in the private meeting room on a cash basis
  • Dinner service begins at 7 PM and we estimate that the presentation begins at about 8:15 PM. For attendees who arrive early, social time begins about 6 PM
  • To RSVP, please write to

Gene Likens: inaugural Helz lecture

The University of Maryland’s Department of Geology hosts its inaugural Helz Lecture on October 18th, and we hope that you can join us.  The Helz Lecture is a new lecture series graciously supported by Drs. George and Rosalind Helz.
Our first speaker will be Dr. Gene Likens.  Dr. Likens and his team were the first to discover the regional effects of acid rain in North America.  The title of the talk will be:  “Acid Rain:  A long and unfinished journey from discovery to political action.”  Dr. Likens is a member of the National Academy of Science and is a recipient of the National Medal of Science among many other honors.  In addition to his research, he also currently teaches a course in science ethics at the University of Connecticut and enjoys interacting with students.
There will be a catered reception prior to the Helz Lecture at 5 pm in the new Edward St. John Learning and Teaching Center, 2nd Floor Lounge.  The lecture will begin at 5:30 pm in Edward St. John Learning and Teaching Center Room 2204.  A link providing further details can be found at:
Everyone is invited to the inaugural Helz Lecture, and it is open to the public.  It should be interesting and fun.  Please feel free to share widely with your students, classes, colleagues, and friends.

October 17, 2019 Paleontological Society of Washington meeting

The Paleontological Society of Washington

7:00 pm, Wednesday, October 17

National Museum of Natural History, Constitution Ave. entrance

From Filter-Feeding Plesiosaurs to Miocene Megalodon (a double-header)

Stephen Godfrey

Curator of Paleontology, Calvert Marine Museum, Solomons, MD

I will first describe the aristonectine elasmosaur Morturneria seymourensis from the upper Maastrichtian of Seymour Island, Antarctica. The cranial anatomy of Morturneria is derived relative to all other plesiosaurs, possessing a novel suite of dental and oral cavity adaptions. It is thought that this highly derived suite of adaptations is convergent with extant gray whales and archaic mysticetes and that it functioned similarly in sieve feeding following suction. The second half of the presentation will focus on trophic interactions between Neogene cetaceans and the mega-tooth shark Carcharocles megalodon (Otodontidae). Trophic interactions between this apex Neogene marine predator and contemporary cetaceans, such as Carcharocles-bitten cetacean bone, will be reviewed

Non-Smithsonian visitors will be escorted from the Constitution Ave. entrance of the NMNH to the Q?rius theatre at 6:50 and 6:55 p.m. Society members will host the speaker for dinner at the Elephant & Castle (1201 Pennsylvania Ave.) prior to the meeting. Members may meet at the restaurant or inside the Constitution Ave. entrance of the NMNH at 5:00 and walk to the restaurant as a group. Parking is available in the west side parking lot of the NMNH.

Omani cultural center: W&M’s Bailey on Oman’s geoheritage

Insights From the Deep Earth:
Oman’s Amazing Geological Heritage

Dr. Chuck Bailey, College of William & Mary

Thursday, 4 October
12:00 p.m.

at 1100 16th St NW Washington DC 20036

The Sultanate of Oman is known for its spectacular geology and rich geological history that covers nearly one billion years. In northern Oman, a vast slab of oceanic crust and mantle, known as ophiolite, was emplaced at the Earth’s surface approximately 80 million years ago. Globally, ophiolites are rare and their origin enigmatic. The Oman ophiolite is the world’s largest and best-exposed ophiolite, which provides a unique setting to study the dynamic processes that place rocks from the sea floor and the deep earth literally at our feet. Today, the ophiolite’s distinctive chemistry may prove to be a useful tool for sequestering carbon and combating global warming. This lecture will provide an overview of Oman’s iconic landscapes, discuss on-going research in the Sultanate, and explore the intersection between geology and society in the region.

Dr. Christopher ‘Chuck’ Bailey is a professor of Geology at the College of William & Mary. He is a structural geologist, and has studied deformed rocks in the Appalachians, southwestern United States, Rocky Mountains, British Columbia, Belize, Portugal, and most recently Oman. Professor Bailey is the 1999 recipient of the Geological Society of America’s Biggs Award for Excellence in University Teaching. At William & Mary he teaches courses on the earth’s environmental systems, weather & climate, planetary geology, and tectonics. His field courses have studied in many locations including the lava fields of Hawaii, the Norwegian Arctic, and the deserts of Oman. Dr. Bailey earned his Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins University.

This event is free and open to the public, RSVP required. To RSVP, email with the subject “Chuck Bailey – Full Name”

NOVA Lyceum: Degroot on the Dutch during the Little Ice Age

Learn About “The Little Ice Age” of the Seventeenth Century, How One Country Adapted and Thrived, and the Lessons for the Climate Change of Today

Wednesday, October 10, 2018
12:30 PM to 1:30 PM
Ernst Center Forum, NOVA Annandale

As the Annandale Campus Lyceum Committee and Mathematics, Sciences, Technology, and Business Division Presents

“Adaptation and Resilience in a Changing Climate: The Dutch in the Seventeenth Century”

Dr. Dagomar Degroot

Assistant Professor of Environmental History, Georgetown University
Director of
Co-Founder of Climate History Network

Author of
The Frigid Golden Age

Refreshments Will Be Served ● Free and Open to the Public

UMD: Carnegie’s Lindoo on magma permeability

2018 University of Maryland Geology Dept. Colloquium Series

Friday, September 28th 2018 at 3:00 pm
in PLS 1130, UMD College Park

Amanda Lindoo
Carnegie Geophysical Laboratory

Permeability development in ascending magmas: implications for explosive vs. effusive eruption styles

Transitions in volcanic eruptive style in mafic magmas are poorly understood. While silicic systems are the most researched and publicized due to their explosive character, mafic volcanoes remain the dominant form of volcanism on the earth. Eruptions are typically effusive, but changes in flow behavior can result in explosive, ash generating episodes. The efficiency of volatiles to degas from an ascending magma greatly influences eruption style. It is well known that volatile exsolution in magmas is a primary driving force for volcanic eruptions, however the roles vesicles and syn-eruptive crystallization play in eruption dynamics are poorly understood. Because the merging of bubbles in magma is mitigated by melt viscosity, it is predicted that permeability development in mafic magma will occur at lower bubble volumes than in silicic magma. However, no study has been performed on experimental samples to provide evidence for this hypothesis. Furthe! rmore, it is unknown how microlites affect the degassing process in terms of facilitating or hindering permeability development. In this talk I will describe how experimental petrology can be employed to: 1) experimentally observe how melt viscosity alone affects permeability development in magmas and 2) understand the effects of syn-eruptive crystallization in vesiculating mafic magmas. Then I will apply our experimental findings to the 2008 eruption of Kasatochi volcano, AK.