Neoproterozoic Paleobiology, Paleogeography, and Geodynamics

Investigator:

Tim Raub: G & G

Advisor:David Evans

Description:

I use paleomagnetic data collected from field areas on all continents to reconstruct paleogeographies for intervals of time between 1 billion and ~500 million years ago that are marked by the appearance or evolution of various biological or geochemical events. Knowing the shape and location of continents and their margins allows specific testing of paleontological and genomic hypotheses regarding the origins and dispersion of animal phyla early in their evolution. Fingerprinting locations of various tectonic regimes allows for enhanced understanding of the global biogeochemical signal recorded by stable isotopes in rocks of that age.

I will use satellite imagery and other components related to identifying and understanding the local and regional geology and structure of my various field areas (South Australia; Newfoundland; Mackenzie Mountains, Canada; Oman; South Africa; Amazonia; Death Valley area...). This allows me to effectively target the "best" or most promising outcrops during my summer field seasons. Identification and sampling of outcrops with certain specifications (attitude, paleo-valley incision, location of modern or ancient faults) is critical to establishing the robustness of my dataset.



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6 June 2003