I am interested in Earth’s tectonic evolution and surface processes, and how their interaction shapes the landscape. I use low-temperature thermochronology (fission-track and U-Th/He) to constrain the ages, rates, and magnitudes of the crustal deformation. Forward and inverse numerical analyses, such as thermal history and landscape evolution models, are frequently applied in my study to interpret the observed information. I am also very interested in sediment provenance analysis, in order to map the erosion intensity in the source catchments. Tools I used to trace sediments include detrital thermochronology, Raman spectroscopy of carbonaceous material, X-ray diffraction mineralogy, etc. My past field areas include the Tian Shan in NW China, Dabie Shan in central China, and New Zealand’s North Island.
I research active tectonics and tectonic geomorphology, using field-based and remote sensing method. I used satellite stereo imagery, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) and ground-based LiDAR to generate high-resolution digital topographic data, and explored their application in active tectonics. I constrained the kinematics of the faults (fault geometry, slip rate, etc.) in the eastern Tian Shan, by identifying the co-seismic deformation using InSAR and GPS data and dating the fault scarps using 10Be and optically stimulated luminescence methods. I am also interested in studying the landscape evolution in tectonically active areas, in order to understand the link between tectonics, climate and surface processes.
I’m interested in the Earth’s deformation over the geological time scale. For my PhD project, I study the geological story of southern Vancouver Island. I will reconstruct the exhumation history of terranes in the forearc of the northern Cascadia subduction zone using (U-Th)/He and fission-track methods. Based on thermal history and thermo-kinematic modelling, I attempt to constrain the slipping history of the major crustal faults along the terrane boundaries. I am also interested to understand how surface erosion could be impacted by global and regional climate, by comparing the reconstructed exhumation history and pattern to the climate records.
Xi did both her undergraduate and Master’s studies at Queen’s University, and had experience in interpreting zircon age and isotope data using statistical models. For her PhD at UVic, Xi will try to interpret data collected from detrital samples using numerical models that simulate the landscape evolution and sediment transport.
Matteo is analysing the peak metamorphic temperatures of meta-sedimentary rocks from the Yukon-Tanana Terrane in the Teslin area, southern Yukon, using Raman Spectroscopy. His Honours thesis is co-supervised with David Moynihan at Yukon Geological Survey.
CateLee completed a directed study in the group as an undergraduate student in 2019-2020. She constructed thermal history models of rocks from southern Vancouver Island using published apatite fission-track data.