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Geosciences Research

We solve problems of changing climate, weather forecasting, groundwater supply and quality, environmental hazards, geotechnical engineering, minerals exploration, energy exploration and production, and natural resources.

  • Atmospheric Sciences

    Primary faculty under this area are Ping Zhu and Hugh Willoughby.

    Researches focus on hurricane dynamics, hurricane impacts, hurricane boundary layer turbulence structures, atmospheric convection, atmospheric boundary layer and clouds, and cloud-climate feedbacks. 

  • Geophysics/Paleomagnetism/Remote Sensing

    Primary faculty under this area are Dean Whitman, Assefa Melessa, Keqi Zhang, and Brad Clement.

    Geophysical investigative techniques using gravity, magnetism, seismic reflection and refraction, earthquake seismology, thermal properties, and satellite imagery. Land-based geophysical studies of the Caribbean and South American seismicity and crustal structure. Environmental geophysical studies in the South Florida and Caribbean Regions. 

  • Geoscience Education

    Primary faculty in this area is Kathy Quardokus Fisher.

    Research focuses on geoscience pedagogy, assessment, cognition, public engagement in geoscience, equity, inclusion, and diversity. Research methods include qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods (interviews, focus groups, surveys, and social network analysis).

  • Hydrogeology/Water Resources/Environmental Geology

    Primary faculty under this area are Rene Price, Mike Sukop, Bill Anderson, Michael McClain, Assefa Melessa, and Dean Whitman.

    Field and modeling approach to groundwater flow and solute fluxes in the subsurface and near subsurface environments. Interaction of surface water and groundwater, solute transport, chemical and isotopic tracing techniques, watershed hydrology in Florida, other US locations, and Central America.

  • Igneous Petrology/Geochemistry/Economic Geology

    Primary faculty under this area are Gautam Sen, Andrew Macfarlane, Rosemary Hickey-Vargas, Neptune Srimal, Bill Anderson, Stephen Haggerty, and Surendra Saxena.

    Research problems in petrology/geochemistry of igneous and metamorphic rocks with reference to their origin, and relationships in time and space. Origin of hydrothermal and other economic deposits Field occurrence, geochemistry and petrogenesis of crystalline rocks, especially those of the Caribbean region and South America. Generation of associated (often, economically significant) hydrothermal deposits. Application of trace element and isotope geochemistry to the study of these petrogenetic associations. 

  • Paleobiology

    Primary faculty under this area are Laurel Collins, Florentin Maurrasse, and Jose Longoria.

    Research applied to taxonomy, phylogeny, evolutionary processes, paleoecology, taphonomy. and biostratigraphy as applied to select fossil groups. Zonal distribution, facies analysis, and paleoecology of different groups of fossils. Specialization may be in macrofossils, microfossils, applied to several aspects of the paleobiology of particular fossil groups, including biodiversity, paleoecology, response to global climatic changes and time relationships of selected organisms. 

  • Stratigraphy/Sedimentology

    Primary faculty under this area are Florentin Maurrasse and Jose Longoria.

    Sedimentary petrology, sedimentary environments, paleoceanography, sequence stratigraphy, cyclic stratigraphy, microfacies analysis, and basin analysis. Field and laboratory techniques applied to solution of problems in these topics, especially as applied to sedimentary rock sequences of South Florida, the Caribbean and Meso-America. Evolution of the sedimentary basins of these regions and their relationships to global and regional tectonics.

  • Structural Geology/Tectonics

    Primary faculty under this area are Gren Draper, Michael Gross, and Dean Whitman.

    Field-oriented research on methods of structural analysis. Analysis of geologic deformations based upon the principles of mechanics and utilizing research data from laboratory and field investigations of folding, fabrics, fracture, and faulting. Structural geology of the Caribbean and South America.