Vitae, Roy D. Hyndman

Vitae: Dr. Roy D. Hyndman                                                  February, 2015

Emeritus Research Scientist
 Pacific Geoscience Centre, Geological Survey of Canada
and Adj. Professor, School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of Victoria
Tel. (250)363‑6428; Fax (250)363 6565; email:
Web Site:

Canadian, Married, Jennifer Gray Hyndman (Close), Children, Arn and Kyle

Ph.D.  Australian National University, Earth Sciences
M.A.Sc. University of British Columbia, Physics (Geophysics)
B.A.Sc. University of British Columbia, Engineering Physics

2012- Emeritus Research Scientist, Pacific Geoscience Centre, Geol. Survey of Canada
1988- Senior Research Scientist V, Pacific Geoscience Centre, Geol. Survey of Canada
1986-   Adjunct Professor, School  Earth and Ocean Sci. and Dept. Physics, Univ. Victoria
1993-94- Visiting Research Scientist, Geophysics Division, Geol. Survey of Canada, Ottawa
1987-88- Visiting Professor, Dept. Earth Sciences, Bullard Laboratories, Univ. of Cambridge
1983-87- Director, Pacific Geoscience Centre, Dept. Energy Mines and Resources, Victoria
1975-82- Research Scientist (Chief Scientist from 1981-83), Pacific Geoscience Centre, Victoria
1974-75- Visiting Professor, Institut de Physique du Globe, Univ. Paris, and CNEXO, Brest
1972-74- Associate Professor, Depts. Oceanography and Physics, Dalhousie Univ., Halifax
1971-72- Associate Professor, Dept. Geophysics and Astronomy, Univ. of B.C., Vancouver
1967-71- Assistant Professor, Dept. Physics and Inst. Oceanog., Dalhousie Univ., Halifax

Honors, Awards,
1. Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada
2. Fellow of the American Geophysical Union
3. J.Tuzo Wilson Silver Medal, the senior award of the  Canadian Geophysical Union, for contributions to geophysics in Canada
4. Honorary member, Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists
5. Former President, Canadian Geophysical Union

Science Productivity
250 publications in scientific journals and volumes
Total of over 12,000 Science Citations (Google Scholar)
h-index of 56 (56 of publications cited more than 56 times)

Committees, etc.
1. Chairman, Lithoprobe Scientific Committee, 2000-2005.
2. Chairman of Advisory Board, San Andreas Drilling Program (SAFOD) (NSF $30M), of U.S. Earthscope Program, 2003-2005.
3. Chairman, International Seismogenic Zone Drilling Committee, Integr. Ocean Drilling Prog. (IODP), 2003-2004 (mainly for program of new Japanese riser drill ship)
4. Member of numerous scientific advisory committees and boards: Lithoprobe, Ocean Drilling Program, Deep Sea Drilling Program, Neptune.
5. Member of external review committee of the Ocean Drilling Program
5. Member of several NSERC committees, chair of one committee
6. Member of several review committees for university departments and government agencies
7. Member of successful application team, Neptune Canada deep sea cable observatory (CFI/BCKDF)
8. Member of IODP Canada NSERC application team
9. Member of Council of Canadian Academies review of Ocean Science in Canada
Non-professional: Two terms on elected School Board, Saanich School District (Victoria)

Research Interests:
-Subduction Zone Megathrust Earthquakes; constraints to seismogenic zone; thermal regime
-N. Cascadia subduction zone structure, offshore and onshore; SW Japan; Sumatra, etc.
-Cascadia subduction zone large scale structure off Vancouver Island, integration of offshore and onshore (Lithoprobe) geological and geophysical data
-Accretionary sedimentary prism structure and processes; structure from multichannel seismic data, thermal regime, consolidation and fluid expulsion
-Queen Charlotte Margin Current Tectonics and Seismicity; Cenozoic tectonic history, mid‑Tertiary extensional basin formation and volcanism, subduction zone initiation
-Marine Gas Hydrates, quantifying, processes of formation; Cascadia, Korea, Japan
-Puget-Georgia Basin Structure, Seismicity and Geodynamics
-Modern Cordilleran Tectonics, Geodynamics; lithosphere thermal regime; global backarcs
-Interpretation of multichannel seismic, magnetotelluric and thermal data for the deep continental crust; fluids in the lower crust
-Laboratory measurements of the physical properties of oceanic crustal and sedimentary rocks, including under high pressure and temperature

Invited Lectures
Recent invited lectures- Canada, U.S., Germany, France, Italy, Great Britain, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, China, New Zealand, Australia

Cruises and Field Programs
Participant on many scientific oceanographic cruises in Pacific, Atlantic, Indian, Arctic oceans; organizer and chief scientist on numerous cruises, including 4 ODP drilling cruises, co-chief scientist on one drilling program.

Former Director of the Pacific Geoscience Centre
Former president of Canadian Geophysical Union
Organized many multi-institutional, multi-national scientific programs

Science Productivity
250 publications in scientific journals and volumes
Total of over 12,000 Science Citations (Google Scholar)
h-index of 56 (56 of publications cited more than 56 times)

Dr. Roy Hyndman is an Emeritus Research Scientist at the Pacific Geoscience Centre, Geological Survey of Canada, and Adj. Professor at the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of Victoria. He came to the Pacific Geoscience Centre at its inception, after 10 years on the faculty of Dalhousie University. He is a former Director of the Centre. He has published over 250 scientific journal and volume articles on a wide range of marine and land geoscience research. He has been involved in numerous international collaborative programs, and has participated and organized research cruises in the Atlantic, Pacific, Indian and Arctic oceans, including four legs of ODP/DSDP, one as co-chief scientist. Advisory committees include: chairman of the Advisory Board of SAFOD (San Andreas Fault Drilling, U.S. EarthScope program); chairman Canadian LITHOPROBE Scientific Committee, member of several ODP Committees. including: chairman Downhole Meas. Committee; chairman ODP/OD21 Seismogenic Zone Drilling (SEIZE) committee for riser drilling; NSF review committee of ODP; Canadian National Committee for IODP), member Academy of Sciences committee, Royal Society of Canada, member of several NSERC Grant Selection Committees, incl. Collaborative Research Initiatives (large NSERC grants); Canadian Council of Academies, Committee Review on Canadian Ocean Science Research Priorities. He has been a member of review committees for several university departments. He has been an Associate Editor of J. Geophys. Res. and several other scientific journals. He  has supervised some 20 PhD and MSc graduate students and 5 postdoctorate research fellows. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union, an Honorary member of the Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists, and a recipient of the J. Tuzo Wilson medal for contributions to geophysics in Canada. He is former President of the Canadian Geophysical Union.
Web Site: 

Roy Hyndman.  Some Scientific Achievements
1. He presented an important new conclusion that the temperatures in the Cordillera backarc lower crust are almost everywhere high enough (800-850C) to result in lower crust detachment and channel flow (in recently accepted GJI publication).  This conclusion has wide implications for understanding Cordillera tectonic history and crustal geology.
2. With Currie and Mazzotti he demonstrated that the Cascadia backarc west of the Rocky mountain front, (and other continental backarcs), is uniformly hot compared to adjacent stable areas, not just the area of the volcanic arc.  This conclusion has wide implications for explaining why the Cordillera has been a tectonic mobile belt for some 300 m.y., why most seismicity is located in the Cordillera, why there is backarc volcanism, and provides an explanation for regional high grade metamorphism in ancient orogenic belts; there is no “heat of orogeny”.  The high temperatures predate collision orogeny. (recent review in Geoscience Canada)
3. With McCrory and others he established that subduction zone episodic tremor and slip (ETS) results from fluids focussed at the forearc mantle corner by overlying impermeable serpentinized forearc mantle.  With Ramachandra he showed from seismic data that there is a large region of deposited quartz above the corner from rising silica saturated fluids. There also is a resulting plume of high electrical conductivity.
4, From IODP deep sea drilling off SW Japan, he established the underconsolidation of the sediments underthrust by the subduction thrust. There is a porosity inversion maintained by high pore pressure.  This observation helps explain why subduction thrusts are so weak.
5. With Peacock he established that the downdip limit of rupture for cold subduction zones is commonly at the forearc mantle corner, where the thrust meets aseismic serpentinized mantle peridotite.
6. He provided the first comprehensive summaries of the evidence for great Cascadia thrust earthquakes (including a Scientific American article).
7. With Shearer and Klemperer he made the case that the seismic and electrical properties of the lower continental crust in tectonically active areas from the seismic and magnetotelluric data requiring a small amount of free water and equilibrium  pore space geometries.
8. With Wang he established that the thrust seismic zone for Cascadia and other hot subduction zones (incl. SW Japan) is thermally limited downdip.  Numerical models predict heat flows that agree well with land and marine heat flow measurements that he, Davis, and Lewis made across the margin of Vancouver Island.
9. Through a careful analysis of routine repeated precision geodetic survey levelling across the Cascadia margin, he established that there is a completely or nearly completely locked subduction thrust along the whole Cascadia margin and that the locked thrust is mainly offshore.
10. With Dragert he presented the first precision GPS measurements that showed the landward motion of Vancouver Island indicative of a locked subduction thrust.
11. With Davis and Lister he built the outrigger marine heat probe with design and data processing now used in most deep sea heat probe measurements globally.
12. With Lister and others he built ocean bottom seismometers to accurately define the seafloor seismicity and therefore offshore oceanic plate deformations.  They were also used off the east coast and in the Beaufort Sea.
13. With Riddihough he first established conclusively that the Cascadia west coast is an active subduction zone, when most geoscientists thought it was extinct or at least dormant.
14. He established that the reason for backarc spreading in the western Pacific island arcs compared to compression mountains and trench overriding on the east Pacific margins is the absolute motion of the backarc plate relative the hotspot reference frame. Was cover article in journal Nature.
15. He established that Greenland was likely separated from northern Canada by seafloor spreading driven by the Iceland hotspot-plume that was at that time under Davis Strait, in the region of the extensive associated ~60 Ma Disco basalts.
16. From laboratory measurements in a high pressure facility that he established (incl. use on drill ship), he showed that the velocities on basalt and gabbro from deep drilling are much higher than those measured in the upper oceanic crust from seismic refraction/wide angle surveys.  The discrepancy was resolved by recognizing that the upper oceanic crust has very high porosity (and permeability).
17. From deep sea crustal-penetrating borehole measurements and associated probe measurements, he established that there is common hydrothermal circulation in the upper oceanic crust.  This circulation was subsequently shown by others to be an important factor in the composition of seawater.
18. He made the first successful measurements of temperatures and heat flow in deep sea scientific boreholes (in Indian Ocean).  After numerous subsequent deep sea borehole measurements, in a review paper with Langseth and von Herzen, he provided the critical calibration test that deep sea 2-3 m probe heat flow values agree with much deeper nearby borehole heat flows.  This test established the validity of most the many hundreds of subsequent marine probe heat flow measurements globally.
19. From many borehole and deep mine heat flow measurements that he made in Australia and the first association with radioactive heat generation, he established that tectonically active areas like eastern Australia are hotter, have higher heat flow, than stable cratonic areas like western Australia.  Hot crust may be weaker and more susceptible to deformation, earthquakes and volcanism.
20. From his detailed measurement profiles of gravity across the Devon Island icecap and draining glaciers in the Canadian arctic he established the thickness and flow form of the ice; this data provided some of the first model constraints on the shape and flow of the Pleistocene continental ice sheets.