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Ongoing and Proposed Research Projects

• Lava poured in a square cross-section steel channel to determine details of rheology (with Einat Lev & Marc Spiegelman, LDEO)

• Lava channel behavior as it encounters various types of barriers (Kathy Cashman & Hannah Dietterich, U of OR)

• Quantifying lava-ice interactions as analogs for lavas associated with the Icelandic Eyafjallajökull eruption, 2010 (Ben Edwards, Dickinson College)

• Influence of crystals on lava viscosity and morphology (Tracy Gregg, Buffalo & Jeff Karson, Syracuse University)

• Lava flow behavior on surfaces of different roughness (Tracy Gregg, Buffalo & Einat Lev, LDEO)

• Lava contamination and diffusion around xenoliths (Ben Edwards, Dickinson College)

• Influence of effusion rate on basaltic lava flow morphology (various collaborators & Jeff Karson, Syracuse University)

• Effective viscosity and morphology of lavas of different composition (Andesite, Komatiite, Phonolite, Carbonatite) (Jeff Karson, Syracuse University & various collaborators)

• Distribution of crystals and vesicles in lavas with controlled flow parameters (Karen Harpp, Colgate University)

• Flow dynamics of komatiitic lavas as analogs for the early Earth (Anthony Fowler, McGill University, Tim Grove, MIT and others)

Student Projects

• Quantification of temperature and slope influence on basaltic lava flow morphology (Matt Kissane, MS Syracuse University, 2011)

• Diffusion in basaltic glass as an analog for lunar impact glass (David Gombosi, Syracuse University

• Clinopyroxene-chains in quenched and slowly cooled basaltic lavas (Cassandra Smith, Whitman College- summer project at Syracuse University)

• Effect of synthetic crystals (stainless steel) on basaltic lava viscosity (Susanne Spencer, St. Lawrence University)

• Surface folds in basaltic lava and implications for lava crust rheology (Elan Schoonmaker, Syracuse University)

• Volatile content of basaltic lavas in the Syracuse Lava Project (Micheal Vicki, Syracuse University)

Testing Equipment for Field Use on Natural Lava Flows

Several investigators have asked to test equipment for use on active natural lava flows in our facility:
Boom-mounted, vertical perspective video and FLIR cameras for video analysis of lava flow dynamics (Einat Lev, LDEO)

Oblique or vertical perspective laser scanner for detailed lava flow morphology during flow (Chris Hamilton, NASA Goddard Center)

Thermocouples and melt water flow measurements for lava-ice systems (Ben Edwards, Dickinson College)

3D digital imaging of lava flows (Hannah Dietterich & Dept. of Geography collaborators, U of OR)

Keweenawan basalt

Starting material: 1.1 Billion-yr-old Keweenawan basalt from NW Wisconsin

pahoehoe flow

Tub-fed pahoehoe flow

lava tube

Drips from ceiling of a lava tube

lava diverted

Lava diverted around barriers

detailed diversion

Detail of lava diverted around a barrier

lava folds

Complexly folded pahoehoe lava

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