South Sister, High Cascades


GEOPHYSICS and the Pacific Northwest

Oregon and the Pacific Northwest boasts many natural wonders that are of geophysical interest. A variety of plate boundary process can be found as well as a diversity of volcanic activity. Directly offshore, new oceanic crust is born along the Juan de Fuca ridge, giving rise to deep-sea volcanic and hydrothermal activity. The Juan de Fuca plate is consumed in the Cascadia subduction zone, causing seismogenic deformation and active volcanism in the High Cascades. East of the Cascades, the high desert plateau includes basin-and-range tectonics.

Oregon also contains the deepest freshwater lake (Crater Lake) in the United States and the deepest gorge (Hells Canyon) within North America. And much of the Pacific Northwest is capped by the Columbia River Basalt which records a major effusive event in Oregon’s geologic past. Given the university’s central location, these geologic environments are readily accessible for study and exploration.

We have a great group of faculty and students. Our research interests cover a wide range of topics and we provide a supportive, collegial environment for graduate and undergraduate research.

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