2010 Summer Program


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"Water and volatiles in the earth's mantle and core"

 June 12 - July 23, 2010, KITP, UC Santa Barbara, CA.

Agenda, Workshop Reports, Student Evaluations, Logistics, Participants, Travel Reimbursements


Workshop organizers:

Louise Kellogg, Cin Ty Lee, Jie (Jackie) Li, Michael Manga, Alex Navrotsky and Barbara Romanowicz (lead).


  • Weeks 1 - 2 (June 12 - June 26, 2010):
       †Informal program - Interactions with current KITP program on "The Physics of Glasses
  • Weeks 3 - 5 (June 27 - July 17, 2010):
       Tutorial and workshop for advanced graduate students and post-docs
  • Week 6 (July 18 - July 23, 2010):
       Informal program, concurrent with the 2010 SEDI
    conference to be held on the UC Santa Barbara Campus.
  • The central focus of the 2010 CIDER Summer Program was on the geodynamical, geochemical, seismological and mineral physics constraints on the distribution and role of volatiles in the earth.
    While precise themes emerged during the program, water was a central topic of this program. Water plays a crucial role in Earth's weather and climate, it is key to the development and sustainability of life, it shapes the surface of our planet, and it is also thought to facilitate plate tectonics, by reducing the viscosity of minerals and rocks. Water affects the evolution of the earth's lithosphere by profoundly influencing geothermal heat flow and cooling, and contributes to processes that weaken faults, including master faults at plate boundaries. Water geochemically interacts with Earth's silicate crust and mantle in many significant metamorphic reactions, and fundamentally contributes to melting and volcanic processes.The melting of the mantle above subduction zones due to hydration-induced lowering of the melting temperature is the primary mechanism by which mantle differentiates to create continental crust in volcanic arcs. Significant water is carried into the mantle by subduction, in the form of hydrated minerals.

    As pressure and temperature increase at upper mantle depths, dehydration processes accompany partial melting and return part of the water to the surface through magmatic and volcanic processes. Although the amounts of water that remain in the rock at greater depths are still unknown, it is likely that the mantle accommodates the water equivalent of several global oceans. More generally, water undoubtedly affects the global rheology and dynamics of the mantle in many ways. For example, it has recently been proposed that the flow of water and its interactions with mantle mineralogical phase transitions near the global 410 km discontinuity produce large regions of concentrated hydration and partial melt at these depths. Understanding the effects of water on current mantle processes and Earth evolution has spawned scientifically rich multidisciplinary on-going observational and theoretical efforts employing seismology, mineralogy, geodynamics, petrology, and rock mechanics.

    The quest for understanding the distribution, form and role of volatiles and iron in the solid earth requires a multi-disciplinary effort, at the intersection of mineral physics, seismology, geochemistry and geodynamics. It is a timely and relevant subject for a multi-disciplinary CIDER summer program. It is potentially a very broad topic and could consist of a focus on shallow structure, including fault zones, ground water, gas hydrates, and carbon sequestration, a separate focus on slab dehydration, volcanism, melting, and lithosphere/asthenosphere coupling, as focus on processes in the transition zone and finally a focus on volatiles and iron in the deep mantle and core.

    As in 2008, the CIDER program consisted of two main parts:

    In the first two weeks, the program was not formally structured. This program provided the opportunity for participants to interact freely and take advantage of the concurrent KITP program on the Physics of Glasses. Alex Navrotsky was in charge of coordination with that program and plans to devote one day (tbd) to discussions of common interests between the two groups.

    Weeks 3-5 featured a tutorial program for about 35 advanced graduate students and post-docs.The goal is to familiarize participants with the tools of geochemistry, geodynamics, mineral physics and seismology that can be used to enravel the properties and dynamics of the Earth's interior. There were formal lectures by prominent faculty members from different institutions and different fields, and hands on exercises. Although the theme of the 2010 program served to guide the content of the lectures and exercises, these were much broader in scope, designed to cross-educate young researchers in the different disciplines relevant to the earth's interior. During the first and second week, five interdisciplinary groups were be formed around research topics chosen by the participants, and engaged in the development of a project, the results of which were presented at the end of the 3 week program. These groups have continued interacting after the summer program and, in particular, four of them made follow-up presentations at the Fall'2010 AGU meeting

    These activities continued at some level into week 6. Many of the participants attended the 2010 SEDI Symposium.

    Geochemistry: Cin-Ty Lee (Rice U.), Sujoy Mukhopadhyay (Harvard U.), Bill McDonough (U. Maryland), T. Plank (Lamont)

    Geodynamics: Michael Manga (U.C. Berkeley), Thorsten Becker (U.Southern Cal.), Sash Hier-Majumder (U. Maryland), Marc Spiegelman (Columbia/LDEO), Peter Van Keken (U. Michigan)

    Mineral Physics: Jie Li (U. Michigan), Marc Hirschmann (U. Minn.), Abby Kavner (UCLA),Wendy Panero (Ohio State), Jan Matas (ENS Lyon)

    Seismology: Guy Masters (U.C. San Diego), Barbara Romanowicz (U.C. Berkeley), Alan Levander (Rice U.), Peter Shearer (UC San Diego), Jeroen Tromp (Caltech), Colleen Dalton (Boston University)