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The Magma Dynamics Group at UCSB is engaged in multidisciplinary research centered on the properties and dynamics of hydrothermal-magmatic systems from the nanoscale scale (Molecular Dynamics Simulations of silicate melts and glasses) to the planetary scale (evolution of terrestrial planet magma oceans). On-going research includes computational geochemical fluid dynamics of magma transport phenomena (magma withdrawal, magma convection, ascent of magma, etc), experimental concentric cylinder viscometry of melts and magmatic suspensions (crystals + melt + bubbles), simulations of thermohaline convection in porous media, classical geochemical and volcanological studies most recently at Mt Etna and Mt Vesuvius and development of simple thermodynamic models for the geochemical evolution of open magma systems (EC-RAFC). We are also interested in the Hadean and pre-Hadean (accretion history) of the Earth, the origin and evolution of the terrestrial planets and the search for extrasolar terrestrial-type planets in the Milky Way.

Some current projects and study topics are listed below. Literature references to papers published by the MDG may be found by clicking on the 'publications' button at the top of this page.

  • Correlation analysis of MOR basalts: scales of mixing defined by analysis of isotope and trace element spatial correlations of zero age MOR basalts
  • Molecular dynamics of the glass transition Extraction of thermodynamic and transport properties from Molecular Dynamics Simulations
  • Rheological properties of melt plus bubble mixtures at high temperatures for natural compositions
  • Geochemical modeling of trace elements and isotopes in magmatic systems undergoing simultaneous recharge, assimilation and fractional.
  • Crystallization Petrology, volcanic stratigraphy and geochronology of Ignimbrites on the Campanian Plain, Naples, Italy
  • Geochemical studies of glass shards in Mayan pottery sherds and relationship to the rise and fall of the ancient Maya in Central America.
  • Petrology and magma transport history at Mt Etna, Sicily, Italy
  • Dynamics of thermohaline doubly-advective convection in fractured porous media

 

 

University of California, Santa Barbara

Department of Earth Science