2008-2009 LSU Geology & Geophysics Alumni Magazine

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The 2008-2009 Edition of the LSU Department of Geology & Geophysics Alumni Magazine

Geology & Geophysics Magazine

LSU Geology & Geophysics Assistant Professor, Sophie Warny, and her colleagues discover a remarkably warm period in Antarctica’s history. (p. 18)

Photo Credit: Simon Nielson

Geology & Geophysics Magazine CONTENTS

EDITOR & DESIGNER Stacey LeBlanc Halphen CONTRIBUTORS Ashley Berthelot Emilia Gilbert John W. Grubb Ann Marie Marmande Carol Wicks The LSU Geology & Geophysics Magazine is published annually for alumni and friends of the department. This publication reflects information and events occuring between July 1, 2008 and June 31, 2009.











Message from the Chair

Dear Alumni and Friends, This is a time for Hellos! I am pleased to be serving as Chair of the Department of Geology and Geophysics. The faculty members in the department are excellent researchers who truly care about the students. I am honored to be a member of the faculty. I have been busy since my arrival in January. I have been to Houston and to AAPG where I met some of the outstanding alumni. I have learned that the alumni are truly strong supporters of the department and of its students. I have also visited Field Camp. What a beautiful setting! Although, my visit was short, I did tour the camp and all the facilities, enjoyed a meal in the dining hall, and of course, I met Danny Porter, our long-serving and dedicated camp caretaker. As Fall semester begins, I will be meeting the recruiters who will be visiting campus. I would also like to formally welcome Dan Kelley who is our new Instructor and Field Camp Director. Dan joins us from Ohio State University. I have also been meeting with various architects: architects for the Atrium renovation, architects for Field Camp improvements, and architects for renovation of the “Old Geology” building. The planned start date for renovation of the atrium is Oct 14th with completion planned for late November or early December. Many people, Laurie Anderson and Jeff Nunn in particular, have made this renovation possible and I will simply watch the project unfold. We also need to thank Clarence Cazalot and Marathon Oil Corporation for their generous donation that made this atrium renovation possible. The planned improvements at Field Camp are possible through the Charles Barney gift. Thank you to those who worked so hard to get the Field Camp project moving. The third group of architects is those associated with the renovation of Old Geology. This is a much longer term project and involves working with Geography and Anthropology and the Coastal Studies Institute. It will likely be years before any renovations start in Old Geology, but preliminary plans are being made. However, I have learned where the “Crows’ nest” and “13th Gate” are. With regard to students, the faculty is pleased to announce that our graduate programs (PhD and MS) are on the rise. We have 36 Masters and 14 PhD students for a total graduate population of 52. Our large class of PhD students boosts the ratio of PhD to Master students to one that is more in line with other departments in the College. Our undergraduate population is growing and there are nearly 100 majors that are more-or-less evenly distributed across the program. Last year, 24 students attended field camp and we anticipate about that many attending this summer. Barb Dutrow just stopped by and there are 40 students in Mineralogy this fall! Our student numbers are up! High oil prices might bring the students into the department; excellent professors keep them in the department. I look forward to the continued growth and improvements in this department. It is my honor to serve as Chair. Sincerely, Carol Wicks

The Tradition Continues: Field Camp 2009 ing the regionally famous Dakota sandstones and shales. In week two the students conducted a reconnaissance bedrock study of LSU Camp property based upon information gathered from the LSU strat column. The third project examined more complex structural features of the Twin Mountain structure near Canon City.


The fourth and sixth projects switched attention to igneous and metamorphic geology. Students camped in primitive conditions while studying the geology of the San Juan mountains volcanic field southwest of Alamosa, Colorado, and the Tusas Mountains metamorphic province west of Taos, New Mexico. The volcanic rocks are Miocene age welded and non welded tuffs intruded by basalt lava as is typical of the Rio Grande Rift extensional province. The Tusas suite consists of a Proterozoic sequence of schists, quartzites, metaconglomerate and metamorphosed tuff deformed in a complex structural terrain. In the fifth project students constructed a regional stratigraphic correlation of the Dakota group based upon logs measured at 5 different exposure localities. One locality is

2009 marked the 81st consecutive installment of the LSU Geology Field Camp at its facility near Colorado Springs, CO. The Camp population included 40 students, 11 staff, and a few visitors. Senior and Freshmen students conquered a slate of challenges that are the hallmark of the LSU Field Camp program. Enrollment in the 2009 Senior class was 24, the largest in decades. Eighteen LSU Geology majors were joined by students from three other schools. Two students hailed from Midwestern State University (Wichita Falls, TX), two from Tulane University (New Orleans), and two from University of Maryland (College Park, MD). For three Seniors, Kathleen Brennan, Brendan Donnelly, and Scott Tipple, this was a second stint at Camp; these Seniors completed the Freshman Camp program three and four years ago. The Senior class conducted field-based studies in petrology, stratigraphy, and tectonics. In the first two weeks students documented and interpreted the stratigraphy and bedrock geology of the LSU Camp property. The stratigraphic interval spans Ordovician dolomites and arenites, Pennsylvanian (Fountain), Permian (Lyons) red-beds, and the overlying Mesozoic sequence, includ-

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near Garden of the Gods Park, two are near the LSU Camp property, one is near Canon City and the fifth is situated at Phantom Canyon, between LSU Camp and Canon City. At each locality students constructed a detailed log of the stratigraphy and drew a sketch of the exposure. The logs and sketches were neatly re-drafted for correlation and presentation. This was a favorite project as students constructed a regional picture of sedimentation and deformation from data they collected. 2009 Freshman Camp enrollment was 16, six of whom were Geology majors and ten were Petroleum Engineering Majors. In addition to the lecture and laboratory materials typical of Physical and Historical Geology courses, the students participated in a number of field trips to study area geology. These trips visited landforms and bedrock exposures of northern Colorado near Rocky Mountain National Park, southern Colorado, including Pueblo Reservoir and the famous dinosaur trackway near La Junta, CO, and the geology of the Rio Grande Ricft and Sangre de Cristo mountains of northern New Mexico. Dr. Marty Horn returned as Camp Director and Senior Instructor, and Dr. Laurie Anderson returned as Freshman Director and Instructor. Camp guests included Dr. Erik Scott, his wife Angela, and son Mark, Mr. John Kruger, husband of Dr. Anderson, and Ms. Karen Horn, wife of Dr. Horn, and their son Landry. Dr. Scott helped with teaching and grading Senior projects in the first week. Mr. Kruger helped with camp preparations prior to the summer session and Ms. Horn managed the budget during the Camp session. Mr. Jimmy Keaton, a neighbor and frequent visitor of Field Camp, also visited briefly with good news confirming the Camp’s right to surface water. In addition to intense, stimulating course work, and good company, the students and staff enjoyed fair weather, good food, and frequent visits by local wildlife: turkeys, bears, and foxes. The 2009 LSU Geology Field Camp was indeed an exciting and pleasant success.

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Continued Support

Halliburton Supports Field Camp Scholars

Devon Energy has continued its tradition of giving to the LSU Department of Geology & Geophysics by further enhancing both undergraduate and graduate student education with a generous gift of $40,000. These funds will assist the support of students during the 2009-2010 academic year. A total of eight scholarships will be awarded to high achieving students majoring in geology and geophysics. Four $2,500 scholarships will be given to deserving undergraduate juniors or seniors, and four $2,500 scholarships will be given to deserving graduate students enrolled in the LSU Graduate Geology program.

On Tuesday, October 28, 2008, faculty, staff and students gathered to celebrate as representatives from Halliburton presented the department with a $10,000 check. This donation will be utilized for scholarship support for students participating in the Halliburton Field Camp Scholars courses at the LSU Geology Field Camp. The donation will allow for five scholarships of $2000 for the 2009 camp.


For 83 years, the LSU Geology Field Camp has been a long standing tradition for the undergraduate curriculum. Students participate in a six-week field course each summer at our field site near Colorado Springs, CO. This hands on learning experience separates the students from the geologists.

Supports ADG Program

EnCana Oil & Gas donate $30,000 in support of scholarships, awards, and research funding for LSU geology graduate students. This donation completes their three year pledge to the department. Pictured above: (L to R) Jeff Hanor, LSU Alumni Professor; Carol Wicks, Department Chair; Shannon Woodson, EnCana campus recruiter; John Deery, EnCana geologist and campus recruiter

The Hess Corporation has joined the growing list of supporters of the Applied Depositional Geosystems (ADG) program with a recent contribution of $15,000. Hess has expressed a desire to continue to build upon their relationship with the LSU geology department through student relations, recruiting efforts, and monetary support. Timothy Kirst, LSU alum (M.S. 1977) and Hess geologist and recruiter, explains, “I want to re-iterate how impressed I am with the ADG program that the LSU geology department has put together, as well as the student participants of the program I have had the opportunity to speak with. This is an excellent program.�

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Chevron Corporation Donates over $170K to LSU

Chevron Corporation continues to be a key player in the development of LSU programs and students. Chevron has always had a strong relationship with the university and their recent gift of $173,250 is a testament to that relationship. This gift was divided among various departments and programs, including but not limited to, the Department of Geology & Geophysics, Department of Petroleum Engineering, and Information Technology. The Department of Geology & Geophysics received $40,000 from the gift. The funds will be split $5,000 for student travel grants and $35,000 in support of the Applied Depositional Geosystems (ADG) program.


Marathon continues their partnership with ADG

Marathon Oil Corporation continues to find value as a corporate partner of the Applied Depositional Geosystems (ADG) program at LSU and continues to give their support with a recent gift of $60,000. These funds will allow the ADG program to bring in two additional geology master’s students. In addition to their support of the ADG program, Marathon gave the department $25,000 for graduate student scholarships and $6,000 for departmental support. Students pose during a visit to the Marathon refinery in Garyville, Louisiana. (L to R) Matt Huber, Travis Atwood, Kyle Metz, Philip Bergeron

Donald Reitz remembers the field camp with a gift through his estate

The LSU Department of Geology & Geophysics received a generous gift of $25,000 through the estate of the late Donald D. Reitz. Don had requested these funds be utilized at the geology field camp in Colorado Springs, CO. Don received his M.S. in geology from LSU in 1971. While attending LSU, he had the opportunity to go on a geologic field trip to Colorado. It was at this time that he “fell in love” with the area as he explored the immense amount of geology the state had to offer. He loved it so much that later in his life he moved to Denver to work and raise his family. Don lost his battle with leukemia in April 2008 at the age of 62.

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Shell Oil Company donated $10,000 for Applied Depositional Geosystems and $25,000 for the Shell Undergraduate Recruitment and Geoscience Education (SURGE) program in the Department of Geology & Geophysics.

Thank you for Your Support

If there is an error, please let us know. Names listed below reflect donations given to the LSU Department of Geology & Geophysics through the LSU Foundation from July 1, 2008-June 30, 2009. Every effort is made to be accurate in reporting donors. $50,000 and above Billy and Ann Harrison Marathon Oil Corporation

$10,000-$49,999 Chevron Inc. Devon Energy Corporation Donald D. Reitz EnCana Oil & Gas (USA), Inc. ExxonMobil Foundation Halliburton Foundation, Inc. Hess Corporation Patrick F. Taylor Foundation Shell Oil Company William D. Dobbins

$1,000-$4,999 Entergy Frank and Patricia Harrison George Belchic, Jr. Imagine Resources, LLC Newfield Exploration Company $500-$999 Edmund G. Wermund, Jr. Hardy L. Coon Jack O. Colle LSU-Houston Petro-Tigers Michael A. Fox $250-$499 F. Baron Craft Harold Silverman Jack L. Woods $100-$249 Anita M. Bourgeois Belinda A. Amato Carolyn W. Cavaroc Deborah A. DeBram

J. Darby Sere’ John D. Mullins Jonathan B. Marcantel Katherine F. Hill Lawrence C. Menconi O.Z. Rolle Shirley S. Flowers Simonton & Kutac, L.L.P. Tiger Athletic Foundation Timothy L. Kirst Walter P. Jensen, Jr. Up to $99 Ann A. Tanner Anthony J. Duplechin, Jr. Beth M. Gammage Daniel C. Barre GlaxoSmithKline Gregory J. Dugas Harold P. Vivien, Jr. Harrison T. Brundage James M. Coleman James W. Parks Jeffrey A. Nunn Jerry D. Bullock J.R. and C.D. Allen Living Trust Julie A. Stagg Kathleen C. Susko Kathy Vail Kimberly L. Voss Lee Gladney Marvin A. Wurzer Mary M. Rushing Richard A. Denne Richard L. Beh Robert D. Bates Robert M. Jemison, Jr. Samuel P. Miano Sara S. Watters Scott A. Wainwright Stuart L. Oden Susan G. St. Cyr Susan Winkler

Timothy M. Ross Virginia A. Colten-Bradley Walter L. Williams Walter P. Kessinger, Jr. William J. Donnaway, Jr.

(L to R) Dean Richard Kurtz; Laurie Anderson; Lloyd Guillory, ExxonMobil; Sitharama S. Iyengar, Chair, Computer Science .

Building a Lasting Relationship

On November 20, 2008, ExxonMobil Development Company’s Execution Planning Manager, Lloyd Guillory, and Facilities Engineering Supervisor, Brian Blades, presented the LSU Foundation with a check for departmental gifts in the amount of $97,000. This amount reflects the significance that LSU has had on workforce development for the company. “ExxonMobil has been a strong advocate in the Baton Rouge community,” stated Jeff McLain, Vice President for Development at the LSU Foundation. “The LSU Foundation recognizes ExxonMobil as a valued partner and steadfast supporter of LSU, helping us transition into the first tier university we are today.”


$5,000-$9,999 Armour C. Winslow BP Foundation, Inc. ExxonMobil Corporation J.P. Raymond, Inc. James H. Painter Philip A. Sandberg

Debra C. Rondem Greater Houston Alumni Chapter Gene M. Stout

The LSU Department of Geology & Geophysics received $7,000 from this donation to be placed in the departmental development fundto assist the department in recruiting top graduate students.

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AAPG Student Chapter Update


Greetings y’all! This is Jake DeHamer, AAPG President for 2008-2009, writing to you from the beautiful place we call Baton Rouge, LA, or as l like to say, the Red Stick. We enjoyed quite the year here at LSU. Between a couple big storms in the fall, a busy academic year, and the first snow in 20 something odd years, things were pretty eventful down in here in the Red Stick. Going into the year, Kyle Metz, AAPG VP, and myself, were committed to bringing the LSU Student Chapter of AAPG to the next level. Kyle and I set three goals to achieve for our LSU student chapter this year: 1, increase the level of student participation in AAPG led field trips; 2, help AAPG members become educated about a geologists role in the oil and gas industry, and 3, become oriented toward community service , specifically within the Baton Rouge area schools. The field trips were a big success this year. The fall semester saw the AAPG student chapter take a day trip to NOLA to visit the US Army Corps of Engineers; learning about steps taken to improve infrastructure to deal with hurricanes within the city. The spring semester brought the annual AAPG spring break trip. The crew from LSU traveled across the great state of Texas for four days in the field at Guadalupe Mountain National Park to study the carbonate stratigraphy of the Delaware Basin. Kyle organized both trips and we are greatly appreciative of his efforts this year, he has set the bar high. We would also like to thank Devon Energy for sponsoring this past year’s field trips. Our monthly meetings saw exciting changes as well. During the fall, AAPG teamed up with our recruiter, Stacey Halphen, to bring recruiters in for technical talks as part of their visit to LSU. Some of the topics featured included: the depositional history of Nile Delta sediments by Erik Scott (LSU YEAR) of Marathon Oil and Gas, deep water exploration off the W. African coast by the gentle-

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men from Hess, and sub-salt seismic interpretation from the Exxon-Mobil recruiting staff. The spring saw the meetings step up even more with the introduction of half day workshops put on by some of our recruiters. The workshops allowed LSU AAPG members to get our hands dirty with industry quality data, making our own interpretations and recommendations in a team setting. Participating companies included: Newfield Exploration, Exxon-Mobil, and Marathon Oil and Gas (Erik just can’t stay away from Tiger Country!). The student response for workshops and talks was overwhelmingly positive and we hope to continue them in the upcoming year as well. Thanks to Stacey and all of our recruiters for making this happen. On the front of community service, AAPG once again saw strong participation from members as well as support from our partners in industry. LSU AAPG worked hand in hand with Philip Bergeron and his geology club mates to put a booth together at the Ocean Commotion Event held at the PMAC. Hundreds of area elementary school kids passed by and saw the inner workings of fossil formation at the LSU AAPG/Geology Club booth. Some of our members also traveled to area schools for an afternoon, showing students of the Baton Rouge area why they should become geologists at a young age. Our ability to work with the Baton Rouge

community was driven by the organizational efforts and creativity of our community relations officer Amy Spaziani, as well as the generous donation made by Newfield Exploration for the 2009 academic year. Thanks to both of you, and to Phillip too.

Gray, and Amy Spaziani. I would also like to express appreciation for those who supported us with time and money this past year. Among our supporters are Devon Energy, EnCana Oil and Gas, Exxon-Mobil, Hess Corporation, Marathon Oil and Gas, Newfield Exploration, and Wood McKenzie. We hope you can continue your support in the future whether it be through coming back to LSU for a short trip and talk, stopping by a game day tailgate, or sponsoring a field trip. Finally, I’d also like to say that we are leaving AAPG in good hands for the 2009-10 academic year. Our new AAPG Executive Team led by John Adam D’Aquin has some great ideas for the future. Go get ‘em DAK! Thanks again to everyone for a successful year, Geaux Tigers! Cheers, Jake DeHamer

M.S. student Matt Smith presents his research “Detection of Marked and Unmarked Burial Sites in Louisiana Using Ground Penetrating Radar”, at the 2008 American Geophysical Union (AGU) annual meeting in San Francisco, CA.

and myself worked hard using limited data to assess the hydrocarbon potential of the Cooper-Eromanga Basin in S. Austrailia. Our team traveled to the regional competition at Schlumberger’s office in Houston, TX, receiving good feedback and having an all around good time. Thanks are in order to Dr. Jeffery Nunn for serving as our coach during this great experience. I’m sure I am leaving stuff out but, I’m running out of words so let’s just say it was a full year of activities and effort for the LSU AAPG Student Chapter and its members. I’d like to finish with a heartfelt thank you to all the participation from our members, especially the 2008-2009 Executive Team: Kyle Metz, Andrew Steen, Kody Kramer, Taylor

Nchey Mbamalu (center) and Steve Chipera of Chesapeake Energy (left) and Paul Nadeau of Stat-Oil (right) at the CMS meeting in Montana. Nchey, a GAEMP M.S. student, had an opportunity to discuss his research and aspirations with many clay scientists working in the petroleum industry during the meeting.

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Other highlights for AAPG this year included our first sponsored tailgate. Ms. Shannon Woodson and Mr. John Deery of EnCana Oil and Gas came down and put on a good show for the LSU-Georgia matchup, even if they were wearing red that day. We also saw the first participation by LSU AAPG in the annual Imperial Barrel Award (IBA) completion. The LSU IBA team of Andrew Steen, Taylor Gray, Ruben Cisneros, Lee Foresterling, Andy Harrison,

Geology Club Update


The 2008-2009 Geology club began its fourth year at LSU with overwhelming grandeur. At the opening meeting, over 65 outdoor enthusiasts filled room and doorway to hear what adventures lay ahead. This year’s officers continued to exceed the club’s principles of academic service and field excursion, but were especially successful in strengthening the undergraduate geo-community. Following club meetings, routine social outings to local establishments and music venues gave our members of numerous majors and interest the opportunity to form lasting friendships and escape the stresses of academia. Geoclub also hosted several costumed gatherings including a Halloween masquerade, Chuck Darwin Birthday Bash (celebrating the 200th birthday and 150th anniversary of his famous book publishing), and a Mineral Fashion exhibition. Students modeled such winning interpretations of all things Darwinian and Mineralogical including multicolored finches, mutants, sparkling gems, apatite, and even millerite armor! The Geoclub even exposed its cooking finesse by assisting at the LSU vs. Georgia tailgate and annual crawfish boil, hosted by the LSU chapter of AAPG. It didn’t take long to get out to explore the cool falls of Tunica Hills in our hot summer weather. Around the corner, in the Kisatche National Forest, near Alexandria, several club members hiked through tall pine groves, along the meanders of a hidden creek, to escape the routine class experience. This overnight camp prepared students for the short drive to Northern Kentucky over the Christmas break to visit the longest cave system in the World, Mammoth Cave. The Mammoth adventure began with a private tour, led by the park’s head geologist, Rickard Toomey, into the natural entrance, accessed by prehistoric beasts, Native Americans, and Civil War miners. Our cavers moved out of the rotunda (big room) to waltz down Broadway Avenue and squeeze through Fat Man’s Misery to find the wondrous Bottomless Pit, River Hall, and Frozen Niagara formation. These narrow and ghastly cave passages vein and wander for over 360 miles below the surface, and the club members were determined to learn just what it means to be a true caver on the Wild Cave tour. After miles of crawling, climbing, and contortion in the balmy depths, the students emerged shrouded in mud to snow covered grounds. This year’s members achieved an outstanding level in outreach and education by teaching the youngest crowd in Geoclub history. Regular outreach to local

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elementary classes ranged from second to fifth grades, but participation in Ocean Commotion 2009 allowed several Geoclub volunteers to illustrate depositional and fossilization processes to grades K-8. Our educational bandwagon expanded to Prairieville and Slidell this past spring to hold an interactive learning session for a Troop of Boy Scouts. We hope to reach even further this fall, geographically and academically, to intrigue more children in the wonders of our grand (captivating/mysterious) Earth. This coming year, the officers of the Geology Club are going to do their best to go above and beyond once again. We aim to establish upper level outreach in the Baton Rouge area, increase and encourage field expeditions, and maintain the great feeling of community we have thus far attained. Please feel free to contact the club if you have any need of geologic demonstrations or volunteers, and keep an eye out for our tailgate this fall. -Philip Bergeron President of the Geology Club at LSU

Geology Highlights Its Rock Stars

Rock Star Lagniappe poster contest winners (L to R) Kyle Metz, Amy Spaziani, Rhonika Robinson.

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The LSU Department of Geology & Geophysics hosted its first ever Rock Star Lagniappe poster contest on Wednesday, October 15, 2008. Dr. Annette Engel and Dr. Phil Bart came up with the idea for the event in an effort to give students an opportunity to showcase and share their research with their professors and peers. Of the twenty-two posters entered, fifteen were displayed from both undergraduate and graduate students. Student posters were judged on content, organization, and overall visuals. All of the posters entered in the contest were superb, but three exceptional posters were awarded prize money. First place honors were given to Amy Spaziani, second place went to Kyle Metz, and Rhonika Robinson took a close third place. In addition to the overall awards, there were three special categories voted on by everyone who stopped by the event. The “Best Dressed” poster went to Brendan Donnelly, the “Best Louisiana Theme” poster went to Rebecca Tedford, and the “Miss Congeniality” poster went to Issaku Kohl.

Fall Recruiting Program 2008 The following companies participated in the Fall 2008 recruiting program: BP Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation Chevron ConocoPhillips Devon Energy EnCana

Eni Petroleum EOG Resources ExxonMobil Hess Corporation Marathon Oil Corporation Minerals Management Service

Newfield Exploration Company Nexen Inc. Petroleum Geo-Services Schlumberger Shell Southwestern Energy Company


We would also like to thank James Painter and Neal Anderson for taking the time to visit campus and give a presentation on the Wood Mackenzie data. This was a great introduction to set the stage for the busy recruiting season. 2008 Internships Adam D’Aquin- Devon Energy Amy Cone- Devon Energy Andy Harrison- Devon Energy Cassie Gray- Devon Energy Dana Thomas- Southwestern Energy David Smolkin- Devon Energy Eric Prokocki- Shell Erin Elliott- Newfield Exploration Company Jake DeHamer- EnCana Jessi Mumphrey- ExxonMobil Juan Chow- Minerals Management Service Kody Kramer- Nexen Inc. Kyle Metz- Hess Corporation Matt Huber- Chevron Nchey Mbamalu- Nexen Inc. Patrick Piche- Nexen Inc. Russell Crouch- EOG Resources Ryan Armbruster- Southwestern Energy

2008 Full-Time Positions Andrew Steen- Chevron Rebecca Tedford- BP Rhonika Robinson- Chevron Vincent Adams- Devon Energy

If you or your company would like to receive more information about participating in the fall recruiting program, please contact Stacey Halphen at slebl23@lsu.edu.

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Are You Thirsty??

GeoChem Students study H2O resources in San Antonio, TX Geology undergraduate and graduate students study water resources

Water is one of our most important natural resources. It is not only essential for all life on the planet, but it is vital to industry, including growing and producing our food, manufacturing plastic and steel, making paper, refining hydrocarbons, and even recycling. But, drinking water is becoming scare. Recent estimates consider that approximately <0.007% of the freshwater on Earth is drinkable. To make matters worse, that water is not equally distributed around the world. Engel says that the saying ‘water flows toward money’ means that water usually is used and regulated by those with the most political clout, power, and money. So, in her class, students learn how water-related political conflicts, both nationally and internationally, have erupted because of desperation and deprivation. It is well-known that the global poor pay the heaviest toll for water, both to obtain it and because of the lack of it. The World Bank recently estimated that 80 nations have water shortages that severely limit agricultural production and, needless to say, any possible economic viability from industrial or municipal activities unrelated to food supply. Engel believes that students need to learn more than simple aqueous geochemistry in this type of class. The nuts and bolts of geochemistry are important, but should be framed in the context of what water is eventually going to be needed and used for.

This past spring semester, students in the class got a taste for both the regulatory and the behavioral approaches during a field trip to San Antonio, Texas, to learn about the Edwards Aquifer. This aquifer is one of the most permeable and productive aquifers in the United States, and is one of the only sources of drinking water for ~ 1.7 million people in the region and all of the city of San Antonio. This year marked the third time she led this trip.

“One of the goals of the trip is to expose students to real people working on real geological, geochemical, or political issues associated with the aquifer,” says Engel. The Edwards Aquifer is ideal because it is such a large aquifer, and use is actively regulated and overuse is actively prosecuted. The aquifer is also interesting from the standpoint of geochemistry, having both a fresh water and a saline water component. The aquifer is also a unique ecosystem, with eight endangered or threatened species of the more than 40 species of highly-adapted, subterranean species that are known to live in the aquifer. Undergraduate students on the trip were graduating Geology & Geophysics seniors Jordyn Spizale and Carl Frisby, and graduate students in Geology and Geophysics and

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Are you thirsty? LSU Geology & Geophysics faculty member, Dr. Annette Summers Engel, asks this question every semester of students enrolled in her graduate and undergraduate environmental aqueous geochemistry course.

“To make aqueous geochemistry more interesting, I think that students should also be more aware of water use practices, as well as sustainable, management approaches that are currently being implemented to increase the supply of water into the future around the globe,” she explains. Most of these approaches typically include regulation, permitting, and charging for water use. Very rarely do these approaches involve behavioral modifications, like reducing wasteful (over)use of water.

(GeoChem Continued) Natural Science, including Lee Foersterling, John Adam D’Aquin, Brendan Headd, Celeste Bonnecaze, and Cassie Gray.


Students visited with scientists employed with the Edwards Aquifer Authority in San Antonio, where they learn how this organization, created through Texas legislation, was mandated to manage, preserve, and protect the Edwards Aquifer. Students had a two-hour meeting with Mr. Geary Schindel, Chief Technical Officer of Aquifer Science, who explained some of the regulatory issues currently affecting aquifer use and management, as well as aquifer geology and hydrology research that the group is conducting. He also advised them as to the training and educational background that he looks for in a potential employee of their organization, which is valuable information for students to hear. On the field trip, the group visited extremely large fresh water springs that discharge from the aquifer, which included taking a glass bottom boat ride over spring heads at San Marcos Springs. Students also got to go “inside” the aquifer on a Natural Bridge Caverns tour. Students were able to compare water use practices by contrasting the River Walk and the Espada Aquaduct in San Antonio. The aquaduct, which is on the National Registry of historic engineering landmarks, was made and used by missionaries in the 1730s, and is still used today to distribute water to the missions and local neighborhood. During one of the days, students sampled water wells in New Braunfels, Texas, approximately 50 km north of San Antonio. The wells are part of the United States Geological Survey monitoring well program, and are important because they cross the fresh water to saline water transition zone. Well sampling shows students what they would do if they were employed by an environmental consulting company, as well as what typical fresh and saline aquifer water chemistries are like. The students learned about basic sampling techniques and analytical methods, and lab results back at LSU were acquired from funding from a Louisiana Board of Regents grant to Engel. “Field-based trips that mix science with cultural and employment experiences are essential to the geoscience curriculum because the exposure lets students see what it will be like to be a gainfully employed member of the global community,” Engel says, adding, “these trips also showcase how scientific research can be used to help solve environmental and societal challenges.”

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Undergraduate GEEK Club students present a poster on their research experience from the Karst Field Course at the 16th International Karstological School in Postojna, Slovenia at the 2008 Geological Society of America’s (GSA) annual meeting in Houston, Texas. (L to R) Brendan Donnelly; Katie Huber; Kathleen Brannen; Philip Bergeron

Congratulations to all our geology graduates from this year! Pictured here are faculty and students at the May 2009 commencement ceremony.

M.S. student Stephanie Welch, with snake stick in hand, in Iberville Parish sampling an artesian well being driven by the current high (40 ft) stage of the Mississippi River. The well is located about 11 miles due west of the Mississippi River at Plaquemine, and the local ground elevation is ca. 3 ft MSL. The area where Stephanie is standing is usually dry.

Student Briefs Carl Frisby (B.S., Mentor Darrell Henry), was the first geology undergraduate student to receive the LSU Communications Across the Curriculum (CxC) Distinguished Communicator Award for completing the required communication intensive course work required by the program. Carl graduated in May 2009 and is currently at the University of South Carolina working toward his M.S. degree. Cassie Gray (M.S., Advisor Annette Engel), received the Edward B. Picou, Jr. Grant from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG). Cassie was also awarded with the William Wilson Award from the Karst Waters Institute. Corine Armstrong (M.S., Advisor Barb Dutrow), whose thesis is entitled “Provenance Studies of Volcanic Clasts from the Santa Fe Group, San Luis Basin, Colorado: A Guide to Tectonic Evolution”, graduated May 2009 and is employed with Chevron in Covington, Louisiana. David Smolkin (M.S., Advisor Juan Lorenzo), received the Classen Family Grant from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG). David also presented a poster at the Southeast Geophysical Society meeting in New Orleans on May 14, 2009. Erin Elliott (M.S., Advisor Juan Lorenzo), received the Don R. Boyd Memorial Grant from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG). Erin also presented a poster at the Southeast Geophysical Society meeting in New Orleans on May 14, 2009.

Jessica Mumphrey (B.S., Advisor Jeff Hanor), whose undergraduate thesis is entitled “Eastern Mediterranean pore waters: clues into the geochemical pathways from evaporated seawater to basinal brines”, graduated May 2009 with Honors. Jessica is currently attending the University of New Mexico to pursue her M.S. degree. Lindsey Johnson (M.S., Advisor Annette Engel), received the John Teagle Memorial Grant from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG). Marc Cooper (M.S., Advisor Gary Byerly), whose thesis is entitled “Komatiitic Flows of the 3.3Ga Weltevreden Formation, Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa: Stratigraphy, Petrology, and Geochemistry”, graduated August 2008 and is employed with Marathon Oil Corporation in Houston, Texas. Matthew Garvin (M.S., Advisor Mike Blum), whose thesis is entitled “Late Quaternary Geochronologic, Stratigraphic, and Sedimentologic Framework of the Trinity River Valley: East Texas Coast”, graduated December 2008 and is employed with ExxonMobil in Houston, Texas. Michael Blevins (M.S., Advisor Brian Darby), whose thesis is entitled “Deciphering Controls on Polyphase Intraplate Deformation in the Ertomiao Region, Lang Shan, North-Central China”, graduated August 2008 and is employed with BP in Houston, Texas. Rebecca Tedford (Ph.D., Advisor Brooks Ellwood), whose thesis is entitled “A Multi-proxy Approach to Investigating the Latest Holocene (~4,500 Yrs. BP) Vegetational History of Catahoula Lake, Louisiana”, graduated May 2009 and is employed with BP in Houston, Texas. Rhonika Robinson (M.S., Advisor Phil Bart), whose thesis is entitled “Role of Shelf Morphology in Grounding-Line Stability: A Numerical Approach”, graduated May 2009 and is employed with Chevron in Houston, Texas. Tao Sun (Ph.D., Advisor Huiming Bao), received a Student Research Grant from the International Association of GeoChemistry (IAGC) to support his dissertation research project “Multiple Sulfate Isotopic Evidence on the Formation of Oxide Copper Ore at Spence, Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.” Vincent Adams (M.S., Advisor Phil Bart), whose thesis is entitled “Do Laminated Sediment-Gravity-Flow Deposits on the Antarctic Peninsula Continental Shelf Record Ice Sheet Grounding Events?”, graduated May 2009 and is employed with Devon Energy in Houston, Texas.

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Jason Hicks (M.S., Advisor Juan Lorenzo), received NSF summer support to conduct a seismic study of the New Orleans levees. Jason also co-authored a paper on July 16th at the Third Annual Symposium of Flooding in New Orleans. This meeting was co-sponsored by the New Orleans Geological Society (NOGS), Louisiana Geological Survey, and the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authorities- East and West Bank.

Congratulations to the following graduate & undergraduate students who received departmental scholarships! GAEMP NSF Scholarship Nchey Mbamalu Jason Hicks Dennis Donaldson Chevron Texaco Graduate Scholarship Lindsey Yann Newfield Exploration Scholarship Remy Leger New Orleans Geological SocietySenior Award Matt Clark


New Orleans Geological SocietyGraduate Award Kyle Metz Marathon Oil Corporation Graduate Scholarship Amy Cone Cassie Gray Chevron Texaco Undergraduate Scholarship Jessica Barnes Mitchell Bennett Jordyn Spizale EnCana Graduate Scholarship Russell Crouch

Charles L. Jones Scholarship Jessica Mumphrey Marathon Geophysics Scholarship David Smolkin Devon Graduate Scholarship Jacob Grosskopf Andrew Steen Taylor Gray Issaku Kohl Devon Undergraduate Scholarship Matt Clark Jessica Mumphrey Jesse Landreneau Students on the Mineralogy Philip Bergeron field trip to the Houston Museum of Natural Science. ConocoPhillps Scholarship Bryan Killingsworth Imagine Resources, LLC Scholarship Mitchell Bennett Chris Trantham George N. May Memorial Scholarship for Best Senior Jessica Mumphrey George N. May Memorial Scholarship for Best Junior Jesse Landreneau George N. May Memorial Scholarship for Best Sophomore Brent Vu Chevron Texaco Field Camp Scholarship Brendan Donnelly Jessica Barnes

ExxonMobil Global Geoscience Scholarship Eric Prokocki Harriet Belchic Field Camp Scholarship Kathleen Brannen Callie Anderson Halliburton Field Camp Scholarship Philip Bergeron Mitchell Bennett Eric Hart Lauren Rolsten Jill Gribbin Carroll Michael Armour Winslow Freshman Field Camp Scholarship Caven Kymes Samuel Nowell Joshua Chance Patrick F. Taylor Scholarship Matt Clark

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(L) Jessi Mumphrey and Jeff Hanor pose for a picture after the May 2009 Commencement ceremony. (R) Carl Frisby (center) and Darrell Henry smile proudly as Carl receives his CxC designation medal.

Faculty Updates Laurie Anderson (H.V. Howe Distinguished Associate Professor) gave the following presentations: Anderson, L.C., Wesselingh, F.P., and Hartman, J. 2008. Phylogenetic Reconstruction of a Freshwater Radiation: Corbulidae In the Miocene of Western Amazonia. Geological Society of America, Program with Abstracts, 340-6. Anderson, L.C. 2008. Marathon Geoscience Diversity Enrichment Program (GeoDE): A Corporate/Academic Partnership In Achieving a Strong and Diverse Workforce. Geological Society of America, Program with Abstracts, 176-4.

Gary Byerly (LSU Alumni Professor & Associate Dean College of Basic Sciences) has taken on the duties of rector for the new LSU College of Basic Sciences residential college. He has also recently taken on the role as chair for the university’s “transition team”. This team is tasked with realigning the university’s departments and colleges to be more efficient and effective. Barb Dutrow (Adolphe Gueymard Professor) was an invited member of the review team for the Natural History Museum’s (London, UK) Department of Mineral Sciences, one of the six departments to comprise the Museum. Originally part of the British Museum, the NHM has a collection of over 70 million natural history specimens assembled through its 400 years. The Mineralogy collection is one of the largest and most diverse collections of its kind in the world. The reviewers examined the scientific research at the Museum in addition to the various mineral collections including the Mineralogy, Ores, Meteorite and Rock Collections as well as the Ocean Bottom Deposit Collection consisting of historical samples from the HMS Challenger expedition of 1883-85. The review team was headed by isotope geochemist Prof. Alex Halliday, FRS, of Oxford University, and Trustee of

Brooks Ellwood (Robey Clark Professor) is a member of the “Reappraisal Task Group, Devonian/Carboniferous System Boundary Global boundary Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP), International Union of Geological Sciences Commission on Stratigraphy, Subcommission on Carboniferous Stratigraphy”. Ellwood along with students in his Geoarchaeology class have been working on some of the Indian mounds in Louisiana, including the LSU Campus Mounds. They have done a number of geophysical surveys and the results prompted the State Archeologist to allow them to take cores completely through the LSU Campus Mounds. They were able to date a hearth in the mound to ~6,000 BP, a bit older than any previous dates so far. The results from all this work has prompted the SE Regional Archaeologist to excavate on the northern A Mound at a point on the crest where the class identified a strong magnetic anomaly (the point where the core was taken and from which the date came). This is the first formal excavation actually performed upon either of the LSU Campus Mounds (there have been a few excavations around the base of both mounds but never up on the mounds). Annette Summers Engel (Assistant Professor) and her colleagues from the Center for Advanced Microstructures and Devices (CAMD) at LSU received a grant from the National Science Foundation for “The Speciation and Behavior of Sulfur Gases in Biogeochemical Processes.” The funding, $278,154, is for four years and comes from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Engel, who has served on the Board of Directors for the Karst Waters Institute for four years, was elected Vice President for Communications. The Karst Waters Institute is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit institution whose mission is to improve the fundamental understanding of karst water systems through sound scientific research and the education of professionals and the public. Engel co-edited the book, Select Field Guides for Cave and Karst Lands in the United States, for the organization. In October, Engel received an all-expenses paid, 10-day trip to China as an invited participant in the “China-US Collaborative Research on Geomicrobiological Processes in Extreme Environments” sponsored by the National Science Foundation and NSF-China. The trip

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Huiming Bao (Assistant Professor) was featured in National Geographic News on January 13, 2009 for his research on “Triple oxygen isotope evidence for elevated CO2 levels after a Neoproterozoic glaciation”.

the Museum. The team was rounded out by a professor from MIT and the University of Manchester, as well as the Director of Collections at the Museum of Natural History in Paris, and the Director and Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

(Faculty Update continued) included sampling hot springs for five days in south-central China. In May, she was one of seven invited speakers in the American Society for Microbiology session, “Geobiology: Microorganism-Rock Interactions from the Deep Subsurface through the Rock Record” in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She gave her talk on the geological consequences of microbial diversity and primary productivity in karst. Ray Ferrell (Harrison Family Professor of Geology) was invited to deliver a 4-day short course at the University of Oslo on applications of X-ray powder diffraction in sedimentary geology. He also to a trip to Italy where he presented part of another short course (Academic School for Young Scientists) and took part in the 14th International Clay Conference. Darrell Henry (Campanile Charities Professor) was elected as the Treasurer of the Mineralogical Society of America (MSA) for a 4-year term beginning November 2008. As part of his duties he will oversee the society endowment as well as serve as a member of the Executive Council, the Management Council and the Financial Advisory and Audit Committee. The MSA was founded in 1919 for the advancement of mineralogy, crystallography, geochemistry and petrology, and promotion of their uses in science, industry and the arts and advancement of fundamental knowledge of natural materials. MSA is the largest and premier mineralogical society in the world with 43% international members.


Darrell Henry was also recently recognized by the University as a recipient of an LSU Distinguished Faculty Award for 2009. This award recognizes faculty members who have a sustained record of excellence in teaching, research, service, and/or a combination of the three. Juan Lorenzo (Associate Professor) will be conducting seismic testing for New Orleans area hurricane levees. The New Orleans regional levee commissioners have agreed to use $30,000 worth of seismic testing to investigate potential trouble spots in the system.

Spotlight on New Faculty and Staff Carol Wicks (Chair and Frank W. and Patricia Harrison Family Professor) joined the department in January 2009 as department chair. Prior to her appointment with LSU, Dr. Wicks has worked fifteen years in higher education, serving most recently as a professor with the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Before arriving at Mizzou (Univerisity of Missouri) in September of 1993, Dr. Wicks was a post-doctoral fellow in the U.S. Geological Survey’s Water Resource Division. She worked there a year and a half prior to obtaining an assistant professor position with Mizzou. An avid researcher, Dr. Wicks’ studies focus on understanding the linkages between hydrology and biology of karst systems. She has written numerous journal articles on this topic, as well as served on NSF panels and been an Associate Editor for journals, such as Water Resources Research and Ground Water. She has also authored and co-authored several books and book chapters. Dr. Wicks’ professional society memberships include the Geological Society of America, the American Geophysical Union, and the National Ground Water Association. She is a fellow of the Geological Society of America (GSA) and the National Speleological Society. Dr. Wicks currently serves as Chair for the Hydrogeology Division of GSA. Other recent leadership positions include, Vice President of the Karst Water Institute (2007-present) and President of the Karst Waters Institute (2004-2007). A native of Clayton, New York, Dr. Wicks earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering at Clarkson University in New York. She then pursued a master’s degree in chemical engineering, and later another master’s degree in environmental science, both from the University of Virginia. She received her Ph.D. in 1992 from the University of Virginia. Dr. Wicks is married to Butler Stringfield, an LSU alumnus and native Louisianian. They have one son, Peter Stringfield, who is currently completing his junior year of high school back in Missouri.

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Algae and Pollen Grains Provide Evidence of Remarkably Warm Period in Antarctica’s History

Photo Credit: Richard Levy

Last year, as Warny was studying samples sent to her from the latest Antarctic Geologic Drilling Program, or ANDRILL AND-2A, a multinational collaboration between the Antarctic Programs of the United States (funded by the National Science Foundation), New Zealand, Italy and Germany, one sample stood out as a complete anomaly. “First I thought it was a mistake, that it was a sample from another location, not Antarctica, because of the unusual abundance in microscopic fossil cysts of marine algae called dinoflagellates. But it turned out not to be a mistake, it was just an amazingly rich layer,” said Warny. “I immediately contacted my U.S. colleague, Rosemary Askin, our New Zealand colleagues, Michael Hannah and Ian Raine, and our German colleague, Barbara Mohr, to let them know about this unique sample as each of our countries had received a (Spotlight continued) third of the ANDRILL samples.” Daniel Kelley (Field Camp Director) joined the department in August 2009. He recently completed his Ph.D. at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. Daniel will be responsible for the oversight and operation of the 6-week summer field camp program near Colorado Springs, CO. In addition, he will teach introductory courses in geology and supervise graduate students in the teaching of physical and historical geology laboratories. Ruixia Xu (Subsurface Laboratory Research Associate) recently joined the department in May 2009. She will provide technical support to faculty and students utilizing the subsurface lab facility for funded research and teaching.

Some colleagues had noted an increase in pollen grains of woody plants in the sample immediately above, but none of the other samples had such a unique abundance in algae, which at first gave Warny some doubts about potential contamination. “But the two scientists in charge of the drilling, David Harwood of University of Nebraska – Lincoln, and Fabio Florindo of Italy, were equally excited about the discovery,” said Warny. “They had noticed that this thin layer had a unique consistency that had been characterized by their team as a diatomite, which is a layer extremely rich in fossils of another algae called diatoms.” All research parties involved met at the Antarctic Research Facility at Florida State University in Tallahassee. Together, they sampled the zone of interest in great detail and processed the new samples in various labs. One month later,

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For Sophie Warny, LSU assistant professor of geology and geophysics and curator at the LSU Museum of Natural Science, years of patience in analyzing Antarctic samples with low fossil recovery finally led to a scientific breakthrough. She and colleagues from around the world now have proof of a sudden, remarkably warm period in Antarctica that occurred about 15.7 million years ago and lasted for a few thousand years.

(ANDRILL continued)

than they are today,” said Warny.

the unusual abundance in microfossils was confirmed.

According to the researchers, these fossils show that land temperatures reached a January average of 10 degrees Celsius – the equivalent of approximately 50 degrees Fahrenheit – and that estimated sea surface temperatures ranged between zero and 11.5 degrees Celsius. The presence of freshwater algae in the sediments suggests to researchers that an increase in meltwater and perhaps also in rainfall produced ponds and lakes adjacent to the Ross Sea during this warm period, which would obviously have resulted in some reduction in sea ice.


Among the 1,107 meters of sediments recovered and analyzed for microfossil content, a two-meter thick layer in the core displayed extremely rich fossil content. This is unusual because the Antarctic ice sheet was formed about 35 million years ago, and the frigid temperatures there impede the presence of woody plants and blooms of dinoflagellate algae. “We all analyzed the new samples and saw a 2,000 fold increase in two species of fossil dinoflagellate cysts, a fivefold increase in freshwater algae and up to an 80-fold increase Microscopic image of the algae in terrestrial polpediastrum. len,” said Warny. “Together, these shifts in the microfossil assemblages represent a relatively short period of time during which Antarctica became abruptly much warmer.” These palynomorphs, a term used to described dust-size organic material such as pollen, spores and cysts of dinoflagellates and other algae, provide hard evidence that Antarctica underwent a brief but rapid period of warming about 15 million years before present. “This event will lead to a better understanding of global connections and climate forcing, in other words, it will provide a better understanding of how external factors imposed fluctuations in Earth’s climate system,” said Harwood. “The Mid-Miocene Climate Optimum has long been recognized in global proxy records outside of the Antarctic region. Direct information from a setting proximal to the dynamic Antarctic ice sheets responsible for driving many of these changes is vital to the correct calibration and interpretation of these proxy records.” These startling results will offer new insight into Antarctica’s climatic past – insights that could potentially help climate scientists better understand the current climate change scenario. “In the case of these results, the microfossils provide us with quantitative data of what the environment was actually like in Antarctica at the time, showing how this continent reacted when climatic conditions were warmer

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These findings most likely reflect a poleward shift of the jet stream in the Southern Hemisphere, which would have pushed warmer water toward the pole and allowed a few dinoflagellate species to flourish under such ice-free conditions. Researchers believe that shrub-like woody plants might also have been able to proliferate during an abrupt and brief warmer time interval. “An understanding of this event, in the context of timing and magnitude of the change, has important implications for how the climate system operates and what the potential future response in a warmer global climate might be,” said Harwood. “A clear understanding of what has happened in the past, and the integration of these data into ice sheet and climate models, are important steps in advancing the ability of these computer models to reproduce past conditions, and with improved models be able to better predict future climate responses.” While the results are certainly impressive, the work isn’t yet complete. “The SMS Project Science Team is currently looking at the stratigraphic sequence and timing of climate events evident throughout the ANDRILL AND-2A drillcore, including those that enclose this event,” said Florindo. “A broader understanding of ice sheet behavior under warmer-thanpresent conditions will emerge.” Written By: Ashley Berthelot, Editor, LSU Office of Communications & University Relations

Recent Faculty Publications Eversull, L. G. and Ferrell, R. E., 2008, Disordered silica with tridymite-like structure in the Twiggs Clay. American Mineralogist, Vol. 93, Issue 4, pp. 565-572. Ferrell, R. E., Jr., 2008, Medicinal clay and spiritual healing. Clays and Clay Minerals, Vol. 56, No. 6, 751-760. Zhang G., Wei, Z., and Ferrell, R. E., 2008, Elastic modulus and hardness of muscovite and rectorite determined by nanoindentation. Applied Clay Science, doi:10.1016/j.clay.2008.08.010. 11p. Goodwin, D. H., Anderson, L. C., and Roopnarine, P. D. 2008. Evolutionary origins of novel conchologic Growth Patterns in Tropical American corbulid bivalves. Evolution and Development, 10:643-656. Bao, H., J. D. Barnes, Z. D. Sharp, and D. R. Marchant (2008), Two chloride sources in soils of the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica, J. Geophys. Res., 113, D03301, doi:10.1029/2007JD008703. Farquhar, J., Canfield, D. E., Masterson, A., Bao, H., Johnston, D., 2008, Sulfur and oxygen isotope study of sulfate reduction in experiments with natural populations from Fællestrand, Denmark, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, v. 72, iss. 12, p. 2805-2821.

Shen, B., Xiao, S., Kaufman, A.J., Bao, H., Zhou, C., Wang, H., 2008, Stratification and mixing of a post-glacial Neoproterozoic ocean: Evidence from carbon and sulfur isotopes in a cap dolostone from northwest China, Earth and Planetary Science Letters Volume 265, Issues 1-2, 15 January 2008, Pages 209-228 Socki, R. A., Harvey, R. P., Bish, D. L., Tonui, E., Bao, H., 2008, Stable Isotope Systematics of Cryogenic Evaporite Deposits from Lewis Cliff Ice Tongue, Antarctica: A Mars Analog 39th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, (Lunar and Planetary Science XXXIX), held March 10-14, 2008 in League City, Texas. LPI Contribution No. 1391, p.1946 Thompson Stiegler, M., Lowe, D.R., and Byerly, G.R., 2008, Abundant pyroclastic komatiitic volcanism in the 3.5-3.2 Ga Barberton greenstone belt, South Africa, Geology. Jeanloz, R. Beck, S., Lisowski, M., Lorenzo, J. M., Mora, C I., Rimstidt, J. D., Shirey, S., Stein, S. and Wirth, K., 2008, Earth Science Instrumentation and Facilities Program Review, EOS Transactions, Feb. 12, 2008, American Geophysical Union, Vol. 89, No. 7, p. 61. Henry, D. J., Sun, H., Slack, J. and Dutrow, B. L., 2008, Tourmaline in meta-evaporites and highly magnesian rocks: perspectives from Namibian tourmalinites. European Journal of Mineralogy, 20,973-993. Mueller, P.A., Mogk, D.W., Henry, D.J., Wooden, J.L. and Foster, D.A., 2008, Geologic evolution of the Beartooth Mountains: Insights from petrology and geochemistry. Northwest Geology, 37, 5-20. Dyar, M.D., Grew, E.S., Henry, D.J. and Sassi, F.P., 2008, Petrologic Mineralogy – the study of minerals in context: A memorial in honor of Charles V. Guidotti. American Mineralogist, 93,261-262. Hanor, J.S., and Mumphrey, J.A., 2008, Spatial Variations in the Salinity of Pore Waters in Northern Deep-Water Gulf of Mexico Sediments: Implications for the Stability of Gas Hydrates: A Report Prepared for the Minerals Management Service, 49 p. Hanor, J.S., and Mumphrey, J.A., 2008, Temperature-Depth Relations in Deep Water Gulf of Mexico Sediments:An Assessment from Equilibrated Bottom Hole Temperatures Obtained During Bottom Hole Pressure Surveys: A Report Prepared for the Minerals Management Service, 35 p.

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Bao, H., Lyons, J.R., Chuanming Z., 2008, Triple oxygen isotope evidence for elevated CO2 levels after a Neoproterozoic glaciations, Nature 453, 504-506 (22 May 2008) | doi:10.1038/nature06959

(Recent Publications continued) Dutrow, B.L., Foster, C.T., Jr. and Whittington, J., 2008, Prograde pseudomorphs as indicators of metamorphic conditions in metapelites. American Mineralogist 93:300-314. Brown, C., 2008. Palynological Techniques. Edited by James Riding (British Geological Survey) and Sophie Warny (LSU). AASP Special Publications. ISBN# 978-0-931871-07-8. 137 pages. Klein, C., and Dutrow, B., 2008. The Manual of Mineral Science. 23rd Edition, John Wiley and Sons, Hoboken, NJ. 675 pp. Edrington, C., Blum, M.D., Nunn, J.A., and Hanor, J.S., 2008, Long-term subsidence and compaction rates: a new model for the Michoud area, south Louisiana, GCAGS Transaction, Houston TX. Porter, M.L. and Engel, A.S., 2008, Diversity of uncultured Epsilonproteobacteria from terrestrial sulfidic caves and springs. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 74(15): 4973-4977. doi:10.1128/AEM.02915-07. Engel, A.S., and Bennett, P.C., 2008, Lower Kane Cave, Wyoming: Where biology and geology meet, in Rhinehart, R. (ed.), National Speleological Society Rocky Mountain Section Regional Field Guide, 43-57.


Ellwood, B.B., Tomkin, J.H., Febo, L.A., Stuart, C.N., Jr., 2008. Time Series Analysis of Magnetic Susceptibility Variations in Deep Marine Sediments: A Test Using Upper Danian-Lower Selandian Proposed GSSP, Spain. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 261, 270-279. Ellwood, B.B., Tomkin, J.H., Ratcliffe, K.T., Wright, M., Kafafy, A.M., 2008. High Resolution Magnetic Susceptibility and Geochemistry for the Cenomanian/Turonian Boundary GSSP with Correlation to Time Equivalent Core. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 261, 105-126. Lan, L.T.P., Ellwood, B.B., Tomkin, J.H., Truong, D.N., 2008. Magnetic susceptibility study on the Permian/Triassic boundary in Lung Cam Limestone at Ha Giang Province, Viet Nam. Journal of Geology, Series B (English), No. 31-32, 285-298. Rabinowitz, D.L., Schaefer,B.E. Schaefer, M.W., Tourtellote, S.W., 2008, The youthful appearance of the 2003 EL61 collisional family, The Astronomical Journal (2008) 136, 1502-1509. Schaefer, B.E., Tourtellotte, S.W., Rabinowitz, D.L., Schaefer, M.W., 2008, Nereid: Light curve for 1999-2006 and a scenario for its variations, Icarus, 196, 225-240. Dyar, M.D., Sklute, E.C., Schaefer, M.W., and Bishop, J.L., 2008, Mössbauer spectroscopy of phyllosilicates: effects of fitting models on recoil-free fractions and redox ratios, , Clay Minerals, 43, 3-33. Lobegeier, M. K., and Sen Gupta, B. K., 2008. Foraminifera of hydrocarbon seeps, Gulf of Mexico. Journal of Foraminiferal Research 38:93-116. Panieri, G., and Sen Gupta, B. K., 2008. Benthic Foraminifera of the Blake Ridge hydrate mound, western North Atlantic Ocean. Marine Micropaleontology 66:91-102. Eichler, P. P. B., Sen Gupta, B. K., Eichler, B. B., Braga, E. S., and Campos, E. J., 2008. Benthic foraminiferal assemblages of South Brazil: Relationship to water masses and nutrient distributions. Continental Shelf Research 28:1674-1686. Bernhard, J. M., Sen Gupta, B. K., and Baguley, J. G., 2008. Benthic Foraminifera living in Gulf of Mexico bathyal and abyssal sediments: Community analysis and comparison to metazoan meiofaunal biomass and density. Deep-Sea Research II 55:2617-2626. Schiebout, J.A., White, P.D., Boardman, G.S., 2008, Taphonomic Issues Relating to Concentrations of Pedogenic Nodules and Vertebrates in the Paleocene and Miocene Gulf Coastal Plain: Examples from Texas and Louisiana, p. 17-30 in J, Sankey and S. Baszio (eds), Vertebrate Microfossil Assemblages: Their Role in Paleoecology and Paleobiology. Indiana University Press, 296 pp.

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White, P. D. and Schiebout, J.A., 2008, Paleogene paleosols and changes in pedogenesis during the initial Eocene thermal maximum: Big Bend National Park, Texas, USA. Geological Society of America Bulletin 120 (11), 13471361.

Ongoing Faculty Research National Science Foundation Geoscience Alliance to Enhance Minority Participation. GEO-Opportunity for Enhancing Diversity. R.E. Ferrell, L.C. Anderson, P.J. Bart, J.M. Lorenzo, J.H. Tomkin. Aquatic Faunal Survey of Alto Purús National Park, Peru. J. Albert (University of Louisiana Lafayette); Anderson. L.C. Evolution of an Early Enriched Reservoir in the Northern Wyoming Province: Evidence from Ancient Zircons (Collaborative Research with University of Florida): Henry, D. Collaborative Research: REU Site Project – Evolution of Precambrian Rock in Yellowstone National Park. Henry, D.

Thermal-chemical-mechanical feedback during fluid-rock interactions: Implications for chemical transport and scales of equilibria in the crust. Department of Energy, Dutrow, B. Past environmental conditions on the Antarctic Peninsula: a palynological characterization of in-situ sediments recovered during the SHALDRIL campaign. Bart (Warny) S. U.S. SMS ANDRILL Project Science Documentation Phase: Palynological Evaluation Bart (Warny) S. Palynological and paleoenvironmental characterization of Andrill’s Southern McMurdo Sound project. Bart (Warny) S. Hydrodynamic and Geochemical Interactions Between Formation Waters of Varying Salinity, Nunn, J.A. Collaborative Research: Epsilonproteobacteria from Terrestrial Springs and Caves, B.J. Campbell and Engel, A.S. Collaborative Research: Biogeochemical controls on antimony and arsenic mobility in a siliceous hydrothermal system, Engel. A.S. and Bennett, P. Temperature Dependence and Resolution of Fundamental Mossbauer Parameters in Mars-Analog Minerals, Schaffer, M. Collaborative Research: Improvements in the Application of the Mossbauer Effect to Studies of Minerals, Schaffer, M. Louisiana Board of Regents Ubiquitous Computing and Monitoring System (UCoMS) for Discovery and Management of Energy Resources Source of Support: U.S. Department of Energy/Louisiana Board of Regents Duration: Lorenzo, J. Recruitment of Superior Graduate Students in Earth, Ocean, and Environmental Sciences, G.Turner, R. Portier, and J. Nunn.

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Generation of overpressures, fluid migration, mass transport, and diagenesis associated with deformation and dissolution of allochthonous salt sheets in the deep water Gulf of Mexico, Hanor, J.S., and J.A. Nunn.

(Ongoing Research continued) Geomicrobiology of the Bad-water Transition Zone of the Edwards Aquifer,Central Texas: Geological and ecological implications of the chemoautotrophically-based groundwater ecosystem, Engel. A.S. Instrumentation Enhancement for Analytical Geochemistry Teaching and Research, Engel, A.S., H. Bao and W. Blanford. Foundations Temminck Fellowship to Conduct Research at the National Museum of Natural History (Naturalis), Leiden, the Netherlands. L.C. Anderson. Stars to Genes: The UCLA Astrobiology Institute, Byerly, G. Muncipal Levee Tomography: An educational experiment of social significance Source of Support: Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority- West Bank Duration: Lorenzo, J.


Corporate Tectonomagmatic control of Giant Ore Deposits in the subduction factory of the High Chilean Andes Between 32 -36 S: Seismic Experiment along a 40km line across the Chuquicamata Cluster, 2nd Region, Chile Source of Support: Codelco, Chile (Chilean Copper Agency) Lorenzo, J. Undergraduate Recruitment and Geoscience Education, Shell Foundation, Nunn, J.A. Minerals Management Service Formation water salinities and temperatures in near-surface, deep-water Gulf of Mexico sediments: implications for methane hydrate stability. Hanor, J.S. NASA Collaborative: A Large-Scale Multi-Color Photometric Survey of Trans-Neptunian Objects, Irregular Satellites, and Trojan Asteroids, Schaffer, M.

Dr. Brooks Ellwood (L) extruding some core from the LSU Campus Mounds with archaeologist Dr. Joe Saunders (R). A ferry excursion to sedimentary rocks on islands in the Oslo Fjord provided a break for Dr. Ferrell during the short course on X-ray techniques that he delivered at the University of Oslo.

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Ed Picou Named to LSU Alumni Hall of Distinction

Edward Beauregard Picou, Jr., graduated with a B.S. in geology from LSU in 1955. He eventually went on to join Shell in 1957 for a 45 year career in the petroleum industry. His hard work led to increased responsibility as he was promoted in 1989 to exploration consultant, Shell Exploration’s highest technical rank. He retired from Shell in 1991, but continued his work as a paleontological consultant until 1998 when he retired. Ed has shown his dedication to the university

and to the department through his continued involvement. He was a charter member of the LSU Geology Alumni Advisory Council and chaired the group for more than ten years. He has been a member of the College of Basic Sciences Dean’s Development Council (Dean’s Circle) since 1994 and chaired the council for four years. In 2007, Ed was named to the College of Basic Sciences Hall of Distinction. He has been actively involved in numerous professional organizations, and many times has been awarded for his involvement.


LSU is home to so many successful and talented alumni. Each year the LSU Alumni association recognizes a class of alumni who have gone on to distinguish themselves and achieve great success. These individuals are also chosen for their love and dedication to their alma mater. This year on April 24, 2009, one of the LSU Department of Geology & Geophysics’ finest, Ed Picou, was chosen as a member of the LSU Alumni Association 2009 Hall of Distinction.

We are proud to have such a hard-working and dedicated alumnus as Ed Picou. Congratulations!

Daphne Jones Olszewski, M.S. Geology, 1978, sitting with Jeff Hanor and Gary Byerly at the Chimes. Daphne visited LSU in late April and wanted some distinctly south Louisiana food. She currently works for an environmental firm in North Carolina.

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Alumni Updates...Where are the now?? Send us your alumni new by filling out the electronic update form on the alumni pages of our website at www.geol.lsu. edu. Here you will also find information on upcoming alumni events, as well as pictures from past alumni events. Richard Denne (Ph.D. 1990) has accepted the position of Senior Geological Advisor at Marathon Oil Corporation. Steve Dixon (B.S. 1980) is moving to New York where he will continue his nationally acclaimed work by joining Children’s Rights, and his wife will do her medical residency. Angela Green-Garcia (M.S. 2008) is currently employed by NASA as a Lunar Geologist. Rob Herbert (M.S. 1983) writes, “Still enjoying life in Salt Lake City since transfering from NOLA in ‘92. Protecting Utah’s pristine ground water resources ranging from alluvial valley-fill aquifiers of the Wasatch Range to the Dakota, Burro Canyon, Entrada, and Navajo sandstones of the Colorado Plateau. Interesting contaminant challenges include metals and radionuclides at uranium mines and mills to nutrient loading from agricultural operations. Raising two teenage sons, Trent (16) and Zachary (14), is more challenging and rewarding than my day job. Living in Salt Lake has given us easy access to great skiing and hiking and the geologic gems of Arches, Canyonlands, Bryce, Zion, Capital Reef, Glacier, N. Rim Grand Canyon, Grand Tetons, and Yellowstone National Parks and many wonderful Utah state parks.”


Rick Huff (Ph.D. 1993) is currently employed as a hydrogeologist by the Alberta Geological Survey. Keena Kareem (Ph.D. 2005) got married to Patrick Taha. Both work for Chevron in Houston, Texas. Chris Livesey (Ph.D. 1999) and her husband, Steve Jones (Ph.D. 1999) have lived in Anchorage, Alaska for over 15 years. Steve works for BP and Chris has her own consulting company. Thomas Loftin (M.S. 1989) is currently employed as a geologist by Ballard Exploration Company, Inc. Mike Mahaffie (M.S. 1985) writes, “Nearing 25 years with Shell. Currently acting as Global Discipline Head of Exploration Geology, Den Hague, The Netherlands.” Jessica Mumphrey (B.S. 2009) was married to Noel Mercer on June 6, 2009 in a ceremony at the Broadmoor United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The couple resides in New Mexico where Jessica is pursuing her master’s degree in geology at the University of New Mexico. Michael Raymond (B.S. 1972, M.S. 1975) began work in June 2008 at EOG Resources as their Senior Data Analyst. Harry Roberts (M.S. 1966, Ph.D. 1969), LSU Boyd Professor of Oceanography and Coastal Studies, along with former LSU Harrison Professor of Geology & Geophysics, Mike Blum, published the first study ever to quantify sediment available to build the Mississippi Delta and fill the southern part of the alluvial valley over the past 12,000 years. The results, titled “Drowning of the Mississippi Delta due to insufficient sediment supply and global sea-level rise,” were published in Nature Geoscience. Allan Scardina (M.S. 1978) writes, “Though my mailing address is in Houston, I am currently on my third overseas posting-this time in The Hague for nearly four years. Previous assignments have been in Jakarta (‘93-’97) and also in The Hague (‘97-’99). Since leaving LSU I have worked for Shell, Santa Fe Energy, Devon, and now back at Shell-all the time in exploration and much of the time in new ventures and business development working basins in Africa, Asia, and the Indian subcontinent. I recently took on a new job that allows me to see even more geology of the world. Should be fun!” John St. Amant (B.S. 2005) writes, “Comissioned as a Naval Officer in December 2007, completed primary flight training at Naval Air Station in Corpus Christi, Texas, January 2009, and am currently in Advanced Helicopter training at Naval Air Station Whiting Field in Milton, FL.”

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Judi Stoute (B.S. 2004, M.S. 2007) recently gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, and she has continued her work as an environmental consultant. Geoffrey Taylor (M.S. 1975) writes, “After leaving LSU, I continued with an Education degree at the University of Toronto. Recently retired as the head of mathematics at Cawthra Park SS in Mississauga, Ontario.” Melanie Thompson (B.S. 2003) is current Ph.D. student at Stanford, has published chapter one in a Geology paper, chapter two is being revised for Journal of Petrology, and chapter three is being reviewed. Melanie expects to graduate in December 2009. Maud Walsh (Ph.D. 1989) The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) named Walsh the 2008 Louisiana Professor of the Year. She is currently an associate professor in the School of Plant, Environmental & Soil Sciences. She was selected for this honor from a pool of nearly 300 professors in the United States for her contributions to undergraduate education.

AAPG Convention 2009 Denver, CO

In Memory Of...

Peter Yuan (Ph.D. 1979) writes, “After teaching at National Sun Yat-sen University for over 20 years, I am now working at the Department of Earth Sciences, National Chen Kung University in southern Taiwan.” Pictured here is the late Adolphe Gueymard with Barb Dutrow, A.G. Gueymard Professor of Geology

GSA Convention 2008 Houston, TX

Adolphe G. Gueymard passed away December 8, 2008, in Houston. A native of St. Gabriel, he graduated from LSU in 1935 and served the petroleum industry in many capacities until his retirement in 1973. Dolphe assisted the College in many ways, through his financial support of the Department of Geology & Geophysics, as well as his time and service for many initiatives including the Geology Field Camp Campaign. Jack O. Colle (1916-2009) passed away June 5, 2009. A native of Pascagoula, Mississippi, he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Geology in 1938. He served the US Air Corps in 1942-46. He opened Jack Colle and Associates in 1949 and founded Lynbrook Oil Company. He closed Lynbrook on March 31, 2009 with his retirement. His accomplishments were numerous, including member of the LSU Alumni Hall of Distinction as well as the Ole War Skule Hall of Honor, just to name a couple.

AAPG Convention 2009 Denver, CO

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Kathyrn Watts (B.S. 2006) is now a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Oregon, where she is conducting an interesting study of Yellowstone volcanism.

Department of Geology & Geophysics Louisiana State University E-235 Howe-Russell Geoscience Complex Baton Rouge, LA 70803