The Western Earth Sciences Record Apr. 2003
Editor: P. King
the initiative with the focus being seismic data
In this acquisition transmittance and interpretation
Issue using large seismic arrays.
(iii) We received a grant from Imperial Oil
From the Chair.............................................1 to support a yearly field trip. This September
Faculty and Staff ..........................................2 Guy Plint, Jisuo Jin and Claudia Cochrane
Students.........................................................2 will lead the inaugural Imperial Oil Field
Events ............................................................3 Trip to Manitoulin Island. The trip will
Initiatives ......................................................4 include second, third and fourth year students.
Upcoming events ..........................................6 (iv) During the spring break, David
Fossil Record ................................................6 Lescinsky and Penny King led a voluntary
Contact Us! ...................................................8 field trip to Hawaii. By all accounts the trip
was a spectacular success, both for the
From geology and the scenery. There have been
the Chair many pictures circulated since the trip,
culminating in a show and tell session. Next
Lalu Mansinha retired as Department Chair year Jisuo Jin has volunteered to lead a trip to
on December 31, and I am now in the harness. the Caribbean (or Bermuda?) to study the
Since the last letter we have had successes, a ecology and sedimentation of a modern
drastic reorganization of the curriculum, and carbonate platform.
some new initiatives. The curriculum will be completely altered
The Successes: for the 2004-2005 academic year. It has taken
(i) We received permission from the an enormous amount of work to establish the
Administration to advertise two new faculty new curriculum and the Faculty have
positions, one in Structural Geology and the responded as only a young, vigorous Faculty
other in Physics of Earth and Planetary can. We hope to have the syllabus established
Interiors. The first is to replace the by January. Norm Duke and his curriculum
contributions of John Starkey and Bill Church committee have to be commended for the
(both retired, 2002). The second is to replace many hours they devoted to this effort. Please
Dr. Alessandro Forte who is leaving us for a read the note on the curriculum on page 5.
CRC Chair in Montreal. These are critical The new initiatives include an increased
positions that will broaden our research emphasis on Resources and Sustainability in
efforts and allow us to teach core courses. the Geology Program and a new prominence
(ii) The Department received the entire for research in meteoritics. Please read more
subsurface dataset for the Western Canada about these exciting initiatives on page 4.
Basin, a gift worth $30,000,000, primarily There is much more that could be written
through the efforts of Guy Plint. With this but I will save it for the next installment.
donation from a consortium of Western
Canada Petroleum companies, we wish to Cordially,
establish a special initiative in Subsurface H. Wayne Nesbitt
Sensing and Interpretative Techniques. Chair,
Guy also received the software necessary to Dept. Earth Sciences
access the data. Dave Eaton and his Polaris
Seismic Laboratory will be an integral part of
Andrea Gerson, Ian Wark Inst., Adelaide,
Faculty Australia, involved in joint research ventures.
& Staff Jamie Noel, Chemistry Department, taught
"Introduction to Geochemistry".
New faculty appointment Roger Smart, Ian Wark Inst., Adelaide,
Dr. Kristy Australia, involved in joint research ventures.
as a Geophysics Students
assistant prof- .....
ing in crustal Graduate Student Life, 2003 (C. Ozyer)
deformation With the summer upon us, graduate students
and geo- are on their way to research areas in exciting
dynamics. locations such as Ireland, South Africa,
Greenland, and the Canadian Arctic, to name
She is particularly interested in using seismic a few. Others are staying at home in the cool
data and nonlinear inversion techniques and air-conditioned lab, using some of the many
applies her research to active earthquakes, new departmental facilities.
deformation and hazards at volcanoes. Dr. Life for the graduate student changed
Tiampo will join the department in summer drastically this year with a reduction in the
2003. number of courses so that students begin their
Martha Anthony, our undergraduate thesis research earlier. Also, the mandatory
secretary, departed upon the birth of her graduate seminar course (580/680) has been
daughter Laura. Katherine Johnston, the reduced to a half course. The other major
interim undergraduate secretary, departed in change to graduate student life was a new
January to take a Secretary IV position with financial support initiative from the Faculty of
the Department of Economics. Tanis Graduate Studies (FGS). Now, qualified
MacNamara, is the current interim Ph.D. students are only admitted if an annual
undergraduate secretary. financial package of $17,000 is secured.
The Robert and Ruth Lumsden Earth The summer of 2001 saw the inception of
Sciences Research Award (2002-2003) was the departmental co-ed baseball team, the
awarded to Jisuo Jin. He will use the funds to “Shrunken Monkey Heads”. On a weekly
support an international visiting scientist to basis the team played other departments on
study the great Ordovician biodiversification campus. With the large numbers of players in
event, the late Ordovician mass extinction and 2002, it appears 2003 will see the inception of
the post-extinction Silurian recovery. This a second departmental team; name TBA. We
study is part of an International Geological look forward to another summer out on the
Correlation Project (IGCP). Huron Flats, as well as post game analysis at
the Grad Club. The department also has a
Recent adjunct professor appointments
volleyball team (also Shrunken Monkey
Bill Blackburn, retired Univ. Windsor
professor, was involved in the graduate
The Grad Club, a favorite get-away
courses: "Graduate Seminar" and "Water on
(hideaway) for grad students became non-
smoking in January 2003, making their
Maria Cioppa, Univ. Windsor assistant
selection of 18 fine beers on tap all the much
professor, is advising UWO Ph.D. students.
easier to enjoy. The patio boasts new furniture
Claudia Cochrane, UWO alumnus, will be
and a canopy so it can be enjoyed during
teaching the new "Applied Petroleum
inclement weather, especially late in the year.
Hawaii Field Trip, 2003 (S. Laloo)
On February 20th 2003, 18 Earth Scientists
(undergraduate and graduate students and
staff) from Western embarked upon an 11-day
journey. Destination: Hawai'i. The trip to
Hawaii was organized by the Department of
Earth Sciences (with additional support from
the Faculty of Science and Hodder Fund) to
give budding young geologists, geophysicists,
and environmentalists a chance to see and Sean Bosman and Barry Graves in a lava tube.
experience active volcanoes. We visited lots of craters, walked in the
For 11 adventurous days, the group visited Thurston lava tube, examined spatter cones
two of the five islands that compromise near Halemaumau, collected reticulite (very
Hawai'i: Hawai'i (a.k.a. The Big Island) and fragile igneous glass), and saw numerous lava
O'ahu. The majority of the trip was spent in flows (aa and pahoehoe). We also saw the
the Hilo region of Hawai'i where we camped beginnings of epithermal gold deposits at
in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park, an area volcanic vents. For the biologists and
still volcanically active. We took advantage of environmentalists, there were visits to the rain
the location by following a densely packed forest, a research laboratory NELHA
schedule, which allowed for maximum use of (National Energy Laboratory of Hawaii
the allocated time while covering as many Authority), Puna Geothermal Venture, Lava
different components of Hawai'i as possible. Trees State Park (observing the remains of
From my perspective, among the many trees left behind after a lava flow), as well as
highlights of the trip, a few were life snorkeling at various beaches.
experiences: the first glimpse of Mauna Loa, During the stay, the party was able to
Hawai'i ‘s largest volcano from Kilauea; a star renew and strengthen ties with researchers in
gazing trip on Mauna Kea, where we were Hawaii. Dr. Don Swanson, chief of the
above the clouds at over 13, 752 feet and saw Hawaii Volcano Observatory, gave us a tour
the most glorious sunset, not to mention snow of the observatory, which monitors and keeps
for the homesick Canadian; being on the site a record of the history of Kilauea (the most
of an active flow (Pu'u O'o) and collecting active volcano in Hawai'i's recent history).
one’s very own sample of fresh lava; Terry Kirby, part of the University of Hawaii
watching lava enter the sea and seeing the undersea research group and possibly the
island grow right before our eyes. most formidable submersible pilot, gave the
group a tour of the submersible vessels
(Pisces IV and V). Dr. Keith Crook and Dr.
Anne Felton, from the University of Hawaii,
both of which gave a tour of their department,
as well as a guided tour to some of the
geology of O'ahu.
As with most trips, the visit to Hawaii wasn’t
solely educational. We also visited some
tourist areas such as Pu'uhonua O Hanaunau
Rachel Singer overcome by Kilauea gas, Hawaii.
by an anonymous benefactor. The 2002
lecturer was Dr. Allan Hildebrand from the
University of Calgary, who talked on "An
Asteroid Burst Over Tagish Lake: How a
Canadian Meteorite Changes Our Perspective
on the Early Solar System". Dr. Hildebrand’s
talk generated a lot of interest and he had the
audience in fits of laughter at his description
of using sniffer dogs to track meteorite
fragments across the surface of Tagish Lake!
Mike Hay next to tuff layers overlain by lava,
SW Rift Zone, Hawaii.
National Historic Park ("Place of Refuge", Initiatives
dolphins, whales and snorkeling), Pualaa .....
Beach Park (thermal spring-fed pool),
Punalauu Black Sand Beach (physical
New Initiatives (H.W. Nesbitt)
weathering), Ka Lae (the green sand beach at Resources and Sustainability
South Point), Hanauma Bay (coral reef), The Department has incorporated the concept
Devastation Trail (lava lake and cinder cone), of Resources and Sustainability as a keystone
as well as waterfalls such as Rainbow and of its new Geology Program. The first step
Akaka falls (groundwater sapping and valley was to establish a new introductory course
development). entitled "Resources, Environment and
The trip was certainly worthwhile and Sustainability in a Material Society" – a long-
everyone was able to learn and experience winded title, but at least proceeding in the
more than we ever expected. In addition, the intended direction. This will be the first of
group was able to delight in native Hawaiian numerous offerings in which one or more of
culture by attending a lu'au and trying surfing these aspects will be emphasized. If, as we all
for the first time. hope, the Fyfe Chair is established one of the
To all the organizers of the trip…only one duties associated with this chair will be to
word can express our gratitude “Mahalo”. champion this initiative. However, the
Thanks for the experience of a lifetime. resources and sustainability initiative will
proceed whether or not the efforts to establish
2002 SCUGOG lecture (P. King) a Fyfe Chair are successful.
The SCUGOG Lecture is an annual public Meteoritics
lecture by an eminent earth scientist, funded By very good fortune Dr. D. Gregory of
St. Thomas approached us with a proposal to
study a wide variety of meteorites. He has the
best private collection of meteorites in the
country, and one that rivals the collections at
public institutions. This opportunity has
spurred us to establish "Meteoritics" as a new
initiative within the department. The initiative
will build on joint efforts with the Department
of Physics and Astronomy including the new
undergraduate joint program in Planetary
Science. It will also strengthen existing joint
Dean Fred Longstaffe with Dr. Allan Hildebrand, planetary initiatives in the graduate program
the 2002 SCUGOG lecturer. (joint courses and joint supervision) and joint
A New Earth Science Curriculum schools. Come 2004, the Department of Earth
(N. Duke) Sciences, and indeed the whole university,
Beginning in September 2004 Western will be will be marching to a different drum. Western
introducing new curricula university-wide. will open for business as the academic
Traditional departmental programming will be equivalent of “one-stop-shopping” where
repackaged into Minor, Major, and incoming undergraduates can tailor their
Specialization Modules, with most students programs to their individual wants and needs.
taking a four-year undergraduate degree. A The W. S. Fyfe Chair in Natural
primary argument to modernize the
Resources and Sustainable
curriculum is to give undergraduates more
flexibility in achieving a broader-based Development (P. Popovich)
education – by mixing and matching program It is my pleasure to announce a further gift
modules. For example, a student could take a from the Vancouver Foundation/Howard C.
Specialization in Geology or Geophysics with Green Memorial Fund in the amount of
a Minor in Advanced Studies in Earth $15,000 toward the William S. Fyfe Chair in
Sciences, a Minor in Mathematics, or should Natural Resources and Sustainable
they be so inclined, a Minor in Music! The Development. I wish to extend a sincere thank
overall impact of curriculum reform on the you to Bob Hodder and Kevin Goldthorp
Faculty of Science, is a move towards a more (Associate VP of Development) for their
“Liberal Science” education. continued stewardship of the Vancouver
New curriculum reform has proved an Foundation. I specifically wish to thank them
opportunity for major house cleaning because for meeting with Lew Green and Allison
it hits the Department of Earth Sciences less Felker of the Foundation this past February in
than 10 years after the merger of the former Vancouver and making this additional
Geology and Geophysics departments, and at generous gift possible. I also wish to thank the
a time of several faculty retirements. In total, entire Fyfe Chair Committee for their hard
22 courses have been deleted and 15 new work and dedication to this special project.
courses are being introduced. We still offer Alan Edgar Fund (P. King)
our traditional Honors B.Sc. degrees in both Dr. Alan D. Edgar was a faculty member in
Geology and Geophysics. Joint programs with this Department, specializing in petrology,
other science departments include Geology from 1963 until 1997. Starting this year, a
and Biology, Environmental Geoscience, fund named in Alan's honor will be used to
Planetary Science and Material Science. A award students who have excelled in
major new initiative is to introduce an “Earth Petrology. Thanks to all the generous donors
Science Major” targeting students in the Arts who have made this award possible!
and Social Sciences who are aiming at careers
teaching Earth and Planetary Science in high **NEW!!**
The Department is setting up a secure
web site for alumni to communicate
and socialize. If you would like to be
listed on this web site, please send your
contact details to Mrs. Mary Rice,
email@example.com. Details on how to access
this web site will be published in the
September newsletter (after your
information has been put on the site!)
Peter Macdonald examining rocks, Sharbot Lake, ON.
Fossil People we've heard
Upcoming record about lately...
UWO reception at GAC-MAC Brian Scribbins (Hon. B.Sc. Geology 1975) now lives
Vancouver (R. Hodder) in Calgary. He did an M.Sc. (Geology) at the
When: Sunday May 25th, Noon - 7 pm University of Toronto in 1978.
Ian Thomson (Hon. B.Sc. Geology, 1975) is a
Where: Vancouver Rowing Club, Carver "Geological Consultant, Yemen Exploration" for
Room, Stanley Park entrance off Georgia Nexen Petroleum International Ltd., (formerly
Street. This location overlooks the marina Canadian Occidental Petroleum) and is currently
in Burrard Inlet and is an easy 15-minute evaluating the Paleozoic (Permo-Carb, Sil-
walk from the GAC-MAC conference Ord)/Infracambrian petroleum potential of the Rub al
Khali (the Empty Quarter) of northern Yemen. He has
center hotels. worked for Nexen since 1991 and has had a variety of
What: Cash bar, light snacks provided. eological assignments on Nexen's Masila Block which
Geology/Geophysics ’78 Reunion led to the first commercial oil production in Yemen
from fractured basement rocks at Sunah Field, as well
(H.C. Palmer) as Cretaceous production from the Dahban and Gabal
A reunion of the Geology and Geophysics Isbeel Oil Fields. He recently gave an oral presentation
classes of 1978 is planned during the weekend entitled "Prospects from Space" at the 2002 Landmark
of Sept. 19, 2003. This year's homecoming is Banff City Forum and at the 2002 Yemen Oil and Gas
Conference in Sanaa, Yemen. The talk outlined a
somewhat special in that Western is
technique he developed for producing digital surface
celebrating its 125th birthday! Brian Todd, structural contour maps in ZMap Plus using a
Atlantic Geoscience Centre, is attempting to combination of Landsat TM remote sensing data and
contact his geophysics and geology SPOT-derived digital elevation data. It was
classmates. An invitation will also be demonstrated that most of Nexen's Masila oil fields in
Yemen (like a number of other Middle Eastern Oil
extended to some members of the class of '79
fields i.e. Ghawar-Saudi Arabia, Awali-Bahrain) have
who went through Western with the class of surface structural expression that can be mapped using
'78 but who returned for a subsequent year in inexpensive remote sensing data. Ian enjoys
order to obtain the Honours degree. Please motorcycling in the Rockies on his 1500cc Vulcan
contact Currie Palmer for more details Nomad with other like-minded petroleum
geologists/engineers/landmen. He also enjoys getting
(firstname.lastname@example.org, Ph. 519-661-2111
together socially for lunch 3 or 4 times a year with a
x86749) or check the department web site. subset of the UWO Geology Class of '75 (Murray
XRF 2003 (C. Wu) Cooper, Jeff Wilson, Duncan Robertson, Dennis
Meloche, Sandy McCracken and Brian " Dr. Scribs"
Two XRF events will be held at UWO this Scribbins (when he's not in Qatar!).
summer: Brian J. Todd (Hon B.Sc. Geophysics, 1978) did an
1) A Short Course in Modern X-ray M.Sc. (Geology) and a Ph.D. (Geology) at Dalhousie
Fluorescence Spectrometry (July 14 – 25) University, in 1984 and 1988 respectively. He is
http://www.uwo.ca/earth/xrf/index.htm currently a research scientist (marine geophysics) at the
Geological Survey of Canada (Atlantic), Bedford Inst.
2) A Symposium on Fundamental Parameters, of Oceanography in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. More
Influence Coefficients and Quantitative details are at: http://gsca.nrcan.gc.ca/staff/todd/
XRF Analysis (July 28 – 30) 1980’s
http://www.uwo.ca/earth/xrf/symposium2 Scott MacRitchie (Hon. B.Sc. Geophysics, 1981) did
003/index.htm an M.Sc. (Geology) at the University of Toronto in
1992 and is currently a hydrogeologist at MacRitchie
UWO Department of Earth HydroG. He works on environmental site assessments,
Sciences Colloquium Series and groundwater investigations for protection and
Talks listed at: www.uwo.ca/earth/colloquium management. He is involved in the APGO Newsletter,
Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario.
Ipeleng Koosimile (B.Sc. Geophysics, 1988) obtained Geoff Shore (M.Sc. Geology 1995) spent several
an M.Sc. in Exploration Geophysics from ITC, Delft in nomadic years working in the exploration industry, and
1992. He works for the Botswana Government then went back to school to do his B.Ed. in 2000 at the
(Department of Geological Survey) in Lobatse. University of Toronto. He has now settled down to
Glen McGill (M.Sc. Geophysics 1986) graduated teach high school science in Keswick, Ontario - a small
along with Rick Secco, Dave Marcotte (whom he still town north of Toronto. He finds the challenges are non-
sees around Ottawa now and then), Mark Gregotski, stop and enjoyable.
and Fiona Diamond. Since graduating, he worked in Tyler Beatty (Hon. B.Sc. Geology 1996/97) is
Calgary for a year or so, returned to the Toronto area working part-time for the GSC in Vancouver and is
and started a small business. After that, came an MBA doing his M.Sc. fulltime in paleontology at Simon
back at Western finishing in '91, a stint as a Fraser University.
management consultant in Ottawa until '95, then he got Mike Gunning (Ph.D. Geology 1997) joined Cominco
into the computer business implementing Oracle in 1996 following his Ph.D., and worked there for 7
software until present. It's not geophysics, but it's still great years - with wonderful experiences and a superb
an adventure! He joined NAV CANADA in Ottawa in group of geologists. He has recently taken on the
March 2002 and he's working on implementing a position of Mineral Deposits Research Geologist for
Human Resources Management System. Lots of fun! the Saskatchewan Geological Survey.
On the personal side, Glen married his wife Karen in Olav Lian (Ph.D. Geology 1997) is currently at the
'93 and they have three kids, Fletcher (6), Delaney (4) Centre for Quaternary Research, Department of
and Quinn (18 months). Karen is a dentist working in Geography, Royal Holloway, University of London
the east end of Ottawa. He'd be interested in staying in after spending a number of years at Simon Fraser
touch with his fellow graduates. University.
Tim de Freitas (M.Sc. Geology 1987) received a Rosa Palumbo (D'Oria) (B.Sc. Geology 1997) is
Ph.D. from the University of Ottawa in 1990. Tim has currently teaching high school science at St. Mary's
been working for about one year at Talisman Energy in High School in Woodstock, Ontario. Specifically, she
Foothills Exploration. He spent some time at Nexen in is teaching a Space and Earth Science Course.
exploration and development of the Plains region of Joyia Chakungal (Hon. B.Sc. 1999) completed an
Alberta and Saskatchewan and at Esso in their Cold M.Sc. at Dalhousie in 2001 and is now in the Ph.D.
Lake thermal recovery heavy oil project. He was also a program there.
research scientist at the Geological Survey of Canada, Ian Colquhoun (Ph.D. Geology 1999) and Lori Ann
Calgary and is editor of the CSPG Bulletin. He says Pizzolato (M.Sc. Geology 1997) are in London,
that since there seems to be a number of Earth Science Ontario. Lori Ann has almost finished a Ph.D. in
folks in Calgary there should be a get-together one day! Geology at U. of T. Ian is Exploration Manager
(Ontario) for Veteran Resources Inc. Connor Malcolm
David Hamilton (M.Sc. Geophysics, 1991) is Colquhoun was born on November 15th 2002. He was
8 lbs 1oz (3650 grams), 21 inches and very healthy.
currently working as Director of Corporate Services for
the Indian Residential Schools Resolution Canada, in 2000’s
Ottawa. He received an Hon. B.Sc. in Physics, Krista Adams (M.Sc. Geology 2001) is working for
Laurentian University, in 1989, before commencing his O'Connor Assoc. Environmental Inc. in Oakville, ON.
M.Sc. at UWO. Greg Clarke (M.Sc. Geophysics 2001) is now in
Jennifer McKay (M.Sc. Geology 1991) obtained a Winnipeg continuing his flight training. He was
Ph.D. from UBC after working in the Stable Isotope previously "2Lt" with the 442 Squadron (Search and
Lab with Fred Longstaffe. She is now pursuing a Rescue) Operations in BC.
postdoctoral fellowship at GEOTOP, University of Allison Fox (Hon. B.Sc. 2001) obtained her B.Ed. at
Quebec @ Montreal. Queen's in 2002 and now has a teaching position with
Cliff Shaw (M.Sc. Geology 1991; Ph.D. Geology Sommerville Manor Private School in Mississauga as
1994) is now back on Canadian soil, with a faculty Head of the Science Department and she is also
position at the University of New Brunswick, teaching physical education.
Fredericton. Mike Dorland (Hon. B.Sc. 2002) has a full-time
Dave MacDougall (Hon. B.Sc. Geology 1994) position with the Oil, Gas and Salt Resources Library,
received an M.Sc. (Geology) from the University of London. He was the 2002 Ontario Petroleum Institute
New Brunswick in 1996. He is currently a geologist at Bachelor Thesis Award recipient for his thesis entitled
Golder Associates in London, Ontario. He moved back "Petrography and Diagenesis of Cambro-Ordovician
to London from the Tar Sands in Fort McMurray, AB Reservoir Rock from the Innerkip Gas Pool and Gobles
in 2000. He received his P.Geo. status in British Oil Pool, Southwestern Ontario".
Columbia, September 2002 and is currently working on Paul and Elissa Glasser (M.Sc. Geology 2002) were
the "GUDI" Study for the Walkerton Water Supply. married in July, 2002. Paul started in the Dental
Jennifer and Dave had their third child one year ago. program at U.W.O. in September 2002.
Contact This newsletter aims to capture the information since the first edition (Sept. 2002).
us! We apologize for the important information that is missing or incorrect and we
encourage you to write to us so that we can include it next time!
Mrs. Mary Rice, Graduate Secretary
Dept. Earth Sciences, Univ. Western Ontario
London ON N6A 5B7 Canada
email@example.com Fax. 519-661-3198
If you would like to submit information for
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