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About EarthByte

The EarthByte Group is one of the world’s leading research groups for global and regional plate tectonic reconstructions and for studying the interplay between the deep earth and surface processes.  Research is conducted in topics as diverse as basin evolution, geodynamic controls on ore deposit formation, continental deformation, formation of Australian opal, causes of long-term sea-level change and Phanerozoic plate tectonic reconstructions.  The EarthByte Group leads the development of open-source plate reconstruction software, GPlates (www.gplates.org).  GPlates enables the interactive manipulation of plate-tectonic reconstructions and the visualization of geodata through geological time, and it facilitates interoperability of plate tectonic data and models with geodynamic computing services for applied and fundamental research purposes.




EarthByte Latest News/Publications

July 2014

Congratulations to Luke Mondy, who was awarded the George Harris Prize for outstanding achievement as a post-graduate student in 2013! Well done Luke!

Welcome back to Mike Tetley, who has commenced a PhD with EarthByte this week, under the supervision of Dietmar Müller, Simon Williams, Nico Flament and collaborator, Mike Gurnis at CalTech. Mike is recipient of a University of Sydney Merit Award from his Honour's degree study which focused on palaeomagnetics of the Palaeozoic Lachlan Orogen.

June 2014

Congratulations to Assoc. Professor Patrice Rey and Professor Dietmar Müller, who have been awarded new research funding, of $5.4 million over five years from the Australian Research Council (ARC) and industry partners, for the Basin GENESIS Hub that will use computational modelling to understand the evolution of sedimentary basins. The project will harness big data sets and super-computer resources to model the interaction between earth's surface processes and deep Earth processes in 'five dimensions'.

The funding was announced by the Federal Minister for Education on Thursday 12 June and is funded through the Industry Transformation Research Hub program the main partners are the University of Melbourne Geodynamics group, Curtin University's Petroleum Group, CSIRO Earth Science and Resource Engineering, National ICT Australia (NICTA), Geoscience Australia, the California Institute of Technology, and five national and international industry partners. Well done to all who contributed to the proposal!!
Read more here

Paper published in Nature Communications: Brune, Sascha; Heine, Christian; Pérez-Gussinyé, Marta; and Sobolev, Stephan V. 2014. Rift migration explains continental margin assymetry and crustal hyper-extension. 5:4014, 1-9, doi: 10.1038/ncomms5014. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png
Supplementary information can be downloaded here.

May 2014

Paper published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters: François, C., Philippot, P., Rey, P. and Rubatto, D. 2014. Burial and exhumation during Archean sagduction in the East Pilbara Granite-Greenstone Terrane. Volume 396, 235-251, doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2014.04.025. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png
Supplementary information is available from Science Direct or download the combined supplementary tables and figures.

Paper published in Solid Earth: Zahirovic, S., Seton, M. and Müller, R. D. 2014. The Cretaceous and Cenozoic tectonic evolution of Southeast Asia. Volume 5, 227-273. Doi:10.5194/se-5-227-2014. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png Access Supplementary Material

April 2014

GPlates Version 1.4 has been released! This latest update of GPlates brings added functionality for the export of both numerical floating point-data and colour reconstructed rasters, for a user specified region and resolution. There is also greater flexibility for raster file import, with ERMapper, Erdas Imagine and GeoTIFF files now supported and geo-referencing is retained from source files. A new 'Move Pole' canvas tool has been introduced that permits modification of reconstruction poles by dragging, or entering coordinates.

Other features added in 1.4:
  • Velocity smoothing at plate boundaries
  • Spreading asymmetry supported for mid-ocean ridges
  • More accurate half-stage rotation at mid-ocean ridges
  • Preview functionality for volume visualisation 3D scalar fields

Download GPlates 1.4 here
Updated tutorials to make the most of new features can be found on the GPlates pages.

Paper published in Tectonophysics: Barnett-Moore, N., Flament, N., Heine, C., Butterworth, N. and Müller, R. D. 2014. Cenozoic uplift of south Western Australia as constrained by river profiles. Doi: 10.1016/j.tecto.2014.03.010. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

PhD student Andrew Merdith presented in the NSW state finals of FameLab, giving a 3 minute run down on his Opal research. Watch the video here.

The Big Data Knowledge Discovery Launch was featured in full-length article in the Newsletter of the Geological Society of Australia in March. Download here pdfnewicon.png

March 2014

Paper published in Geophysics: Bai, Yongliang, Williams, Simon E., Müller, R. Dietmar, and Hosseinpour, Maral. 2014. Mapping crustal thickness using gravity data: Methods and uncertainties. Vol 79, No. 2, doi: 10.1190/GEO2013-0270.Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

Discussion Paper published in Solid Earth: Cannon, J., Lau, E and Müller, R. D. 2014. Plate tectonic raster reconstruction in GPlates. Solid Earth Discussion, 6, 793-830, 2014, doi: 10.5194/sed-6-793-2014.Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

Congratulations to EarthByte's Sascha Brune and Christian Heine (now at Shell in The Hague) who made it to the Sydney Uni front page with a media piece on "How the world missed out on a Saharan Atlantic ocean", attracted international media attention and were chosen as a "Research Focus" in the current volume of Geology for their paper: Oblique rifting of the Equatorial Atlantic: Why there is no Saharan Atlantic Ocean. Well done!
Their paper addresses the role of rift obliquity during the opening of the Equatorial Atlantic and the subsequent acceleration of South America.

February 2014

Welcome back to Andrew Merdith who commenced study towards a PhD in February and will be investigating the early supercontinent Nuna.

Paper published in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems: Seton, M., Whittaker, J., Wessel, P., Müller, R.D., DeMets, C., Merkouriev, S., Cande, S., Gaina, C., Eagles, G., Granot, R., Stock, J., Wright, N. and Williams, S. 2014. Community infrastructure and repository for marine magnetic identifications. doi: 10.1002/2013GC005176. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

Discussion paper published in Solid Earth: Butterworth, N., Müller, R.D., Quevedo, L., O'Connor, J.M., Hoernle, K. and Morra, G. 2014. Pacific Plate slab pull and intraplate deformation in the early Cenozoic. Solid Earth Discussion, doi: 10.5194/sed-6-1-2014. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

Discussion paper published in Geoscientific Model Development Discussions: Herold, N., Buzan, J. Seton, M., Goldner, A., Green, J. A. M., Müller, R.D., Markwick, P. and Huber, M. 2014. A suite of Early Eocene (~55 Ma) climate model boundary conditions.Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

January 2014

Congratulations to Maria Seton, who was awarded the 2014 Dorothy Hill Award from the Australian Academy of Sciences, for her contributions to global plate tectonics, long- term sea-level change and global geodynamics and back-arc basin formation. Well done Maria!

Paper published in Scientific Drilling: S. J. Gallagher, N. Exon, M. Seton, M. Ikehara, C. J. Hollis, R. Arculus, S. D, Hondt, C. Foster, M. Gurnis, J. P. Kennett, R. McKay, A. Malakoff, J. Mori, K. Takai, and L.Wallace, 2014. Exploring new drilling prospects in the southwest Pacific, 2, 1/6, doi:10.5194/sd-2-1-2014.Download Paperpdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Geology: Heine, C., and Brune, S. 2014. Oblique rifting of the Equatorial Atlantic: Why there is no Saharan Atlantic Ocean. Geology, doi:10.1130/G35082.1 107-199.Download Paperpdfnewicon.png Access Supporting Data (ref. 2014073)

December 2013

Paper published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters: Flament, N., Gurnis, M., Williams, S., Seton, M., Skogseid, J., Heine, C., and Müller, R.D. 2014. Topographic assymetry of the South Atlantic from global models of mantle flow and lithospheric stretching. EPSL, 387, 107-199.Download Paperpdfnewicon.png Link to paper at Science Direct

Paper published in the Journal of Geodynamics: Butterworth, N., Talsma, A., Müller, R. D., Seton, M., Bunge, H.-P., Schuberth, B.S.A., Shephard, G. E. and Heine, C. 2014. Geological, tomographic, kinematic and geodynamic constraints on the dynamics of sinking slabs. JGeodyn, 73, p.1-13. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png Supplementary Material

Paper published in Solid Earth: Hosseinpour, M., Müller, R. D., Williams, S. E. and Whittaker, J. M. 2013. Full-fit reconstruction of the Labrador Sea and Baffin Bay. Solid Earth, DOI:10.5194/se-4-461-2013. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

November 2013

Maria Seton was awarded an ARC Future Fellowship on - Oceanic gateways: a primary control on global climate change?

Patrice Rey was interviewed for a Sydney Morning Herald MyCareer feature, as a 'Man of Mars and Opals'! Download here

EarthByte-developed GPlates software, represented by Dietmar Müller, has been has been nominated for The Australian Innovation Challenge 2013 and it has become a finalist in the minerals and energy category! Read the article published in The Australian.

Recent EarthByte research on opal exploration was recognised as an outstanding highlight and reflects the work of many of the group including, Andrew Merdith, Tom Landgrebe, Adriana Dutkiewicz and Patrice Rey. Congratulations to all of the contributors to the project and specifically to John Cannon and Michael Chin, the GPlates developers!

October 2013

EarthByte would like to welcome Professor Sanzhong Li who is visiting for 2 months from the Ocean University of China. We also welcome Shan Yu, a PhD student at the Ocean University of China who will study at EarthByte for 1 year developing plate reconstructions of the Paleo-Tethys in central China.

Paper published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters: Coltice, N., Seton, M., Rolf, T., Müller, R.D. and Tackley, P.J. 2013. Convergence of tectonic reconstructions and mantle convection models for significant fluctuations in seafloor spreading. EPSL, 383, pp.92-100. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

GPlates News, a new email update on recently added GPlates functionality, new tutorials, and GPlates related research and downloadable datasets has been launched. The newsletter will be accessible from this site, or you can subscribe here to receive the email News every quarter.

The Big Data project and Earthbyte data-mining research was publicised in the "Data mining for gold" story on the Australia unlimited website. The project is now part of "Brand Australia".

September 2013

Paper published online in Tectonics: Maloney, K. T., Clarke, G. L, Klepeis, K. A. and Quevado, L., 2013, The Late Jurassic to present evolution of the Andean margin: Drivers and the geological record. Download paper pdfnewicon.png

Dr Nico Flament provides an expert opinion for the recent Rowley et al. 2013 study of USA continental margins and the influence of dynamic topography. Read article pdfnewicon.png

Maria Seton et al.'s 2012 paper "Global continental and ocean basin reconstructions since 200 Ma", was number 16 in the top 25 geology articles downloaded from Elsevier in the first half of 2013. Congratulations! Top25
Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

The recently published paper by Simon Williams et al. 2013, on Early India-Australia spreading history revealed by newly detected Mesozoic magnetic anomalies in the Perth Abyssal Plain, was selected as one of three research highlights in the current edition of EOS. Well done! EOS research highlights pdfnewicon.png Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

August 2013

Congratulations to Nathaniel Butterworth and Kara Matthews who submitted their PhD theses on 30th August! Both Kara and Nathan will be continuing to work at EarthByte in post-doctoral positions.

The EarthByte 'Big Knowledge Discovery Project' is on the front cover of the current issue of the Australian Journal of Mining.Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

Ex-Earthbyter Jo Whittaker was awarded the L'Oréal Fellowship for Women in Science for research on 'How India and Australia Broke up over the last 100 million years'. Congratulations Jo!

Congratulations to Grace Shephard who submitted her PhD thesis this month! Well done! Grace will be taking up a post-doctoral position in Norway at the University of Oslo's Centre for Earth Evolution and Dynamics (CEED) and will continue to work on plate motion modelling and numerical simulations of mantle flow.

Paper published in Solid Earth: Journal of the European Geosciences Union: Heine, C., Zoethout, J. and Müller, R.D. 2013. Kinematics of the South Atlantic Rift. Solid Earth, 4, 215-253, doi:10.5194/se-4-215-2013. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Geology: Müller, R.D., Dutkiewicz, A., Seton, M. and Gaina, C. 2013. Seawater chemistry driven by supercontinent assembly, breakup, and dispersal. Geology. doi: 10.1130/G34405.1. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth: Williams, S.E., Whittaker, J.M., Granot, R. and Müller, R.D. 2013. Early India-Australia spreading history revealed by newly detected Mesozoic magnetic anomalies in the Perth Abyssal Plain. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, Volume 118 p. 1-10. doi:10.1002/jgrb.50239.   Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

July 2013

Paper published in Earth Science Reviews: Shephard, G., Müller, R. D., and Seton, M. 2013. The tectonic evolution of the Arctic since Pangaea breakup: Integrating constraints from surface geology and geophysics with mantle structure. Earth Science Reviews, 124, p.148-183, doi:10.1.1016/j.earscirev.2013.05.012. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

June 2013

Launch of the $12million, 3-year collaboration between NICTA (Australia's Information and Communications Technology Centre of Excellence), The University of Sydney, SIRCA, and Macquarie University. This is a ground-breaking project that will use big-data and machine learning to deliver new insights to the natural sciences - the geoscience thread is being led by Professor Dietmar Müller.

Patrice Rey generates global media coverage with his paper about the formation of opals in the SMH, The Australian, SkyNews, Australian Geographic, and many others. Paper: Rey, P. (2013) Opalisation of the Great Artesian Basin (central Australia): an Australian story with a Martian twist, Australian Journal of Earth Sciences, 60(3), p291-314. Download paper pdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Computational Mechanics: Quevedo, L., Hansra, B., Morra, G., Butterworth, N. and Müller, R.D., 2013, Oblique Mid Ocean Ridge Subduction Modelling with the Parallel Fast Multipole Boundary Element Method, Computational Mechanics, 51, 455–463, DOI 10.1007/s00466-012-0751-5.
Download paper pdfnewicon.png

May 2013

GPlates 1.3 Released!!! A major release with new functionality including volume visualisation of 3D scalar fields, data-mining functionality, surface relief lighting and many other enhancements.
GPlates download site

Paper published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters: Morra, G., Seton, M., Quevedo, L., Müller, R.D. (2013) Organisation of the tectonic plates in the last 200 Myr, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 373, p93-101, doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2013.04.020
Download paper pdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems: Whittaker J.M, Goncharov, A., Williams S.E., Müller R.D., Leitchenkov G. (2013) Global sediment thickness dataset updated for the Australian-Antarctic Southern Ocean, Geochem. Geophy. Geosyst., doi:10.1002/ggge.20181
Download paperpdfnewicon.png

April 2013

Paper published in Eos: Seton, M., Williams, S.E., Zahirovic, S., Micklethwaite, M. (2013) Obituary: Sandy Island (1876-2012), Eos, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 94 (15), p141-148.
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Paper published in the Australian Journal of Earth Sciences: Merdith, A., Landgrebe, T., Dutkiewicz, A. and Müller, R.D., 2013, Towards a predictive model for opal exploration using a data mining approach, Australian Journal of Earth Sciences, 60, 217-229. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08120099.2012.754793
Download paperpdfnewicon.png

Congratulations to Simon Williams and co-PIs, awarded 5-weeks of ship time on Australia's new Marine National Facility the vessel RV Investigator in Oct-Nov, 2014. This expedition will return to the western edge of the survey the Gulden Draak Knoll, a micro-continent at the western edge of the Perth Abyssal Plain. The aim is to collect magnetic, gravity, swath, seismic reflection, seismic refraction, dredge and sediment data to understand the evolution of this major bathymetric feature.

Ex-EarthByter Jo Whittaker awarded the 2012 Edgeworth David Medal by the Royal Society of NSW. Congratulations.

March 2013

Paper published in Biogeosciences: Wright, N., Zahirovic, S., Müller, R.D. and Seton, M., 2013, Towards community-driven paleogeographic reconstructions: integrating open-access paleogeographic and paleobiology data with plate tectonics. Biogeosciences, 10, 1529-1541, doi:10.5194/bg-10-1529-2013. Download paper pdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems: Whittaker J.M., Williams S.E., Müller R.D. (2013) Revised tectonic evolution of the Eastern Indian Ocean, Geochem. Geophy. Geosyst., doi:10.1002/ggge.20120 Download paperpdfnewicon.png

February 2013

Invited review paper published in Lithosphere: Flament, N., Gurnis, M. and Müller, R.D., 2013, A review of observations and models of dynamic topography, Lithosphere, 5, 189-210, doi: 10.1130/L245.1. Download paper pdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems: Bower, J.B., Gurnis, M., Seton, M., 2013, Lower Mantle Structure from paleogeographically constrained dynamic Earth models, Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst., 14, 44-63, doi:10.1029/2012GC004267Download paperpdfnewicon.png

January 2013

Paper published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Gibbons, A.D., Whittaker, J.M., Müller, R.D. (2013), The breakup of East Gondwana: assimilating constraints from Cretaceous ocean basins around India into a best-fit tectonic model,  Journal of Geophysical Research, 118, 1–15, doi:10.1002/jgrb.50079.
Download paper pdfnewicon.png

Paper published in Computers & Geoscience: Landgrebe, T.C.W., Merdith, A., Dutkiewicz, A. and Müller, R.D, 2013, Relationships between palaeo-geography and opal occurrence in Australia: a data-mining approach, Computers and Geosciences, 56, 76-82. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cageo.2013.02.002
Download paper

Paper published in Geophysical Journal International: Masterton, S., Gubbins., D., Müller, R.D. and Hemant, K., 2012, Forward modelling of oceanic lithospheric magnetisation, Geophysical Journal International, doi: 10.1093/gji/ggs063. Download paper

December 2012
Paper published in Earth Planet Science Letters: Matthews, K.J., Seton, M., Müller, R.D., 2012. A global-scale plate reorganization event at 105-100 Ma. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 355–356, 283-298. Download paper

November 2012

Jo Whittaker explains the Indo-Australian plate breakup to The Age

Southern Surveyor cruise takes the media by storm!
Maria Seton and her team are back from the Southern Surveyor cruise in the Coral Sea, which was investigating the tectonic framework for the easternmost Coral Sea and northern extent of the Lord Howe hotspot for 25 days. The cruise has been featured on
Radio Australia, which was then picked up by ABC News, Sydney Morning Herald and BBC.

October 2012

Michael Chin wins NeCTAR/ANDS #nadojo competition for GPlates

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Congratulations to Michael Chin from the Earthbyte group on winning this year's NeCTAR/ANDS #nadojo competition. Michael demonstrated a new web-enabled GPlates prototype on the NECTAR/ANDS eResearch computing infrastructure, porting some of the powerful plate reconstruction capabilities to the web. The new GPlates competed with several other candidates from universities and research institutes in Australia, and winning on the basis of the novelty and future potential. A judge was quoted as saying: "...being able to look at tectonic plates and how they move over 140Ma years ago brought me back to that child-like awe of wonder and amazement, like the first time you look up at the stars and realise how many (light?) years away they are..." Well done Michael! The web-enabled GPlates demonstrator can be experimented with online at here

August 2012

D. Müller, L. Quevedo and T. Landgrebe from EarthByte have been successful in applying for resources on the new iVEC supercomputer "Fornax" located at UWA through a merit allocation project built around GPlates new data mining capabilities. GPlates performance as a data-intensive application and its potential for generating a high impact research outcome by taking advantage of multicore GPU architectures have been key to this grant. The proposal explores the distribution of GPlates' in-built graphics acceleration across multiple computing nodes equipped with high-performance GPUs, to allow for real-time reconstruction as well as large-scale data-mining and statistical analyses of high-resolution raster data. The application of these tools to geodata synthesis through space and time, and the assimilation of disparate geological and geophysical data into a large-scale four-dimensional Earth models have enormous relevance in the study of important relationships through time pertaining to mineral deposits and energy systems. Fornax (Latin for 'furnace') is the latest addition to the Pawsey Centre Project infrastructure funded by the Australian Government, as part of an $80 million Super Science initiative aimed at providing new supercomputing facilities and expertise to support SKA (Square Kilometre Array) research and other high-end science. The system procured from SGI comprises 96 nodes, each containing two 6-core Intel Xeon X5650 CPUs, an NVIDIA Tesla C2075 GPU and 72 GB RAM, resulting in a system containing 1152 cores and 96 GPUs.

The UNCOVER Searching the Deep Earth: A vision for exploration geoscience in Australia document was officially launched by the Minister for Resources, Energy and Tourism, Martin Ferguson, at the 34th International Geological Congress in Brisbane last week. This important policy document is a call for Australian earth scientists to cooperate in an innovative, structured and nationally coordinated strategic venture that will bring competitive advantage to Australian mineral exploration. The vision requires research groups, surveys and explorers to participate in a cross-institutional joint research venture on a scale never before attempted. Dietmar Muller from the earthByte group is a member of the UNCOVER implementation committee. See
http://www.science.org.au/policy/uncover.html/ for more information.

EarthByte would like to welcome Ashish Agarwal who has just started an AISRF funded PhD with Dietmar Muller on Indian ocean plate reconstructions.

EarthByte would like to welcome Judith Sippel (GFZ Postdam), Kenni Petersen (Aarhus University), Nicolas Coltice (University Lyon 1), Nick Mortimer (GNS), Bruce Eglington (University of Saskatchewan) who will be visiting the EarthByte group in the weeks after the IGC meeting in Brisbane.

Maria Seton, Dietmar Muller, Jo Whittaker and Jonathan Aitchinson attended the first Back-arc Basin and Island Arc Interridge working group meeting in Brisbane.

Over 15 members of EarthByte attended the International Geological Congress meeting in Brisbane and were heavily involved in the organisation of symposia and sessions.

July 2012
EarthByte would like to welcome Paul Wessel from the University of Hawaii who is visiting for several weeks to work on a project on African absolute plate motions.

Paper published in Earth-Science Reviews: M. Seton, R.D. Müller, S. Zahirovic, C. Gaina, T.H. Torsvik, G. Shephard, A. Talsma, M. Gurnis, M. Turner, S. Maus, M. Chandler, Global continental and ocean basin reconstructions since 200 Ma, Earth-Science Reviews, Volume 113, Issues 3-4, July 2012, Pages 212-270, ISSN 0012-8252, 10.1016/j.earscirev.2012.03.002.
Download Paper June 2012
EarthByte would like to welcome Sarah Maher from the University of Hawaii who will be working with Dietmar Muller and Maria Seton on African absolute plate motions. May 2012
6 May 2012
Paper published in EPSL: Chandler, M., Wessel, P., Seton, M., Taylor, B., Hyeong, K., Kim, S., 2012, Reconstructing Ontong Java Nui: Implications for Pacific absolute plate motion, hotspot drift and true polar wander, EPSL, 331, 140-151

A joint University of Sydney-National Taiwan University will be held at the University of Sydney between 7-8 June, 2012. The workshop will focus on plate reconstructions of SE Asia, Tethys and western North Pacific, mapping and reconstructing slabs, and ideas and applications for GPlates.

EarthByte is pleased to welcome Laura Alisic from Caltech for a short research visit. Laura will be working primarily with Kara Matthews on plate reorganisations

Kara Matthews joins the Einstein A Go Go RRR Fm radio program to discuss plate tectonics 100,000,000 years ago.
http://rrrfm.libsyn.com/einstein-a-go-go-6-may-2012

April 2012
Paper published in G-Cubed: Zahirovic, S., Müller, R. D., Seton, M., Flament, N., Gurnis, M. and Whittaker, J., 2012, Insights on the kinematics of the India-Eurasia collision from global geodynamic models, G3, VOL. 13, Q04W11, 25 PP., 2012 doi:10.1029/2011GC003883

Congratulations to Ana Gibbons for submitting her PhD thesis. Well done Ana!

Dietmar Muller, Nicolas Flament, Christian Heine, Logan Yeo and Maria Seton will be attending the EGU meeting in Vienna


March 2012
Congratulations to Grace Shephard for being selected to participate in the 62nd Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting, which is dedicated to Physics this year. Only the 550 most qualified Young Researchers can be given the opportunity to enrich and share the unique atmosphere of the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. Congratulations Grace!
For more information, please visit their website.

February 2012
Paper published in Paleocenography: Herold, N., Huber, M., Müller, R.D and Seton, M., 2012, Modelling the Miocene climatic optimum, Part 2: ocean circulation, Paleoceanography, doi:10.1029/2010PA002041

EarthByte is pleased to welcome Sascha Brune from GFZ Potsdam for a 2 week research visit

Congratulations to Kara Matthews who has been awarded the prestigious Chris Powell Medal of the Geological Society of Australia at a meeting of the Specialist Group in Tectonics & Structural Geology in Waratah Bay, Victoria. Well done! Download Paper

January 2012
A new Interridge working group on "Drivers of the Episodic life-cycle of Intra-oceanic Arc-Backarc Hydrothermal Systems" chaired by Maria Seton has been approved by Interridge.  Other EarthByte members involved in the working group are Dietmar Muller, Jo Whitakker and Joanathan Aitchison. Further details about Interridge activities can be found at
http://www.interridge.org

An IODP workshop on the SW Pacific to be hosted ay the University of Sydney has been approved.  The workshop, led by Neville Exon, Stephen Gallagher and Maria Seton will see ~70 scientists from around the world come to USyd for a 4 day workshop in October, 2012.

Paper published in Computers and Geosciences: Gurnis, M., Turner, M., Zahirovic, S., DiCaprio, L., Spasojevich, S., Müller, R.D., Boyden, J., ., M., Manea, V.C., Bower, D. and Zahirovich, S., 2012, Plate Reconstructions with Continuously Closing Plates, Computers and Geosciences, 38, 35-42, doi:10.1016/j.cageo.2011.04.014. Download Paper

December 2011
Maria Seton is attending the Third Decadal Plan Interridge meeting in San Francisco

EarthByte group members Dietmar Müller, Adriana Dutkiewicz, Nicolas Flament, Leonardo Quevedo, Maria Seton, Simon Williams, Nathaniel Butterworth, Kayla Maloney and Kara Matthews are attending the AGU Fall Meeting 2011 in San Francisco, USA from 5-9 December, 2011. Click here for details

November 2011
Paper published in the Nature Geoscience: K. Hoernle, F. Hauff, R. van den Bogaard, A. D. Gibbons, S. Conrad and R. D. Müller, 2011, Origin of Indian Ocean Seamount Province by shallow recycling of continental lithosphere, Nature Geoscience, doi:10.1038/ngeo1331 Download Paper

Ana Gibbons, Dietmar Müller and colleagues from IfM-GEOMAR Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences, Germany research into Indian Ocean Cocktail Party leaves trail of party hats behind has been highlighted on the USyd News Download Paper
Kara Matthew's microplates project is featured and the GPlates software itself is also highlighted in the
'Stories of Australian Science' publication for 2011. Download Paper

Congratulations to Nicolas Flament and Patrice Rey for their interesting Geology paper on subaqueous continental flood basalts. Download Paper

Congratulations to the EarthByte group who has been successful in two multi-Chief Investigator Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities grant submissions. Well done!

EarthByte research into the tilting of the Australian continent toward the northeast over the past 50 million years has been featured in the ‘Nature Geoscience’ research highlights section. Download Paper

October 2011
Congratulations to Maria Seton and her team who have been successful in a bid for ~$1M in ship time on the Southern Surveyor, the Australian Marine National Facility. Maria and her team will investigate the ‘Tectonic framework for the easternmost Coral Sea and northern extent of the Lord Howe hotspot’ during a ~3-week long cruise in October/November 2012. Well done!

September 2011
Paper published in Lithosphere:
DiCaprio, L. Gurnis, M., Müller, R.D., and Tan, E., 2011, Mantle dynamics of continent-wide Cenzoic subsidence and tilting of Australia, Lithosphere, doi: 10.1130/L140.1. Download Paper pdfnewicon.png

The EarthByte Group would like to welcome PhD student Florian Wobbe who is visiting our research group for 2 months from AWI Bremerhaven, Germany working on circum-Antarctic palaeo-bathymetry reconstructions

EarthByte group members Dietmar Müller, Christian Heine, Nicolas Flament, Aedon Talsma, Logan Yeo and Grace Shephard are attending the GSA Fragile Earth conference in Munich, Germany from 4-7 September, 2011. Click here for details

EarthByte PhD students Aedon Talsma, Logan Yeo and Grace Shephard are attending the Geological Society's Dynamic Topography conference in London.

Congratulations to Luke Mondy who finished his Honours Thesis! Well done!

August 2011
Leonardo Quevedo is attending the 12th International Workshop on Modeling of Mantle Convection and Lithospheric Dynamics in Germany from 20-25 August. Click here for details

The EarthByte group welcomes research student Fabian Stenzel from the Technical University Munich (Germany) who was awarded a competitive "RISE worldwide" scholarship (Research assistantships in Science and Engineering) from the German Academic Exchange Service DAAD. Fabian will be staying with the group for about 3 months and work together with Christian on assimilating global datasets for deforming plate models and geodynamic modelling. The RISE scholarship is an initiative of the German government-funded DAAD to facilitate international academic exchange and promote research careers with undergraduate students in Germany. It covers travel cost, insurance and pays a salary for the successful students.

Congratulations to the geodynamic modelling team for their successful application for computing resources from the Pawsy Centre (iVEC) at Perth as well as a successful follow-up NCI resource allocation.

PhD student Kara Matthews is on a 3 week research visit to Caltech to work with Prof. Mike Gurnis and his group on a project related to the 100 Ma plate reorganisation

EarthByte is pleased to welcome Matthew Huber from Purdue University for a half day visit during his super-short stay in Sydney.

Simon Williams, Christian Heine, Leonardo Quevedo and Dietmar Müller were successful in a University of Sydney STEPs teaching enhancement program funding starting next year which will go towards the development of field-based geophysical data acquisition practicals for 3rd year students.

July 2011
PhD student Sabin Zahirovic is attending the International Congress on the Permian and Carboniferous in Perth

A News and Views piece by Dietmar Müller titled "Plate motion and mantle plumes" has been published in Nature.

EarthByte warmly welcomes new PhD student Maral Hoseinpour who has started her PhD on plate deformation models of passive margins.

Great news! Jo Whittaker has given birth to a healthy baby boy. Daniel Walker was born on Sunday, 17th July. Congratulations Jo and Sharik!

Congratulations to PhD student Logan Yeo and honours student Allison Thomas who have both been awarded a PESA Tertiary Study Grant. Well done!

GPlates has been accepted by Softpedia which is a popular library of over 400,000 free and free-to-try software programs and is one of the top 500 websites (according to Alexa traffic rankings). Since GPlates' acceptance yesterday (30th June) it has already been downloaded over 1,000 times according to Softpedia. This is significant considering that the total number of downloads from Sourceforge, the main distribution site for GPlates over its lifetime, exceeds 10,000. GPlates was tested by Softpedia and granted the 100% FREE Softpedia award.

June 2011
EarthByte is pleased to have Jerome Dyment and Roi Granot from IPG Paris visiting our research group as part of the Indian Ocean project.

EarthByte is pleased to have Prof. Tony Watts from Oxford University visiting our research group and presenting a seminar on "Plate Flexure and Dynamic Topography".

Great news! The Pyrites of the Caribbean won the Sydney Uni Social Lunchtime mixed soccer comp!!! The semi-final was 6-5 with Pyrites beating the undefeated team "The Pretenders", and the final game score was 1-1 and went to golden goal. Nathan scored the winning goal with one minute to spare! Woo! Well done to EarthByters Nathan Butterworth, Leonardo Quevedo, Grace Shephard, Megan Holt and Kayla Maloney.

May 2011
Congratulations to PhD students Sabin Zahirovic and Aedon Talsma who both received the University of Sydney, Faculty of Science Award for Citizenship for their contribution to extra-curricular activities at the university. Well done!

Congratulations to PhD student Kayla Maloney who has been awarded a University of Sydney Postgraduate Research Prize for Outstanding Academic Achievement, based on her paper "Crustal growth during back-arc closure: Cretaceous exhumation history of Cordillera Darwin, southern Patagonia" in J. Metamorphic Petrology (Maloney et al., 2011). Well done Kayla!

EarthByte's Dietmar Müller, Joanne Whittaker and Ana Gibbons along with Gordon Lister and Lloyd White of the Research School of Earth Sciences at ANU, Canberra, have won funding for their project "Towards a unified East Gondwanaland reconstruction and its implications for Himalayan Orogeny" from the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund (AISRF). This project will involve a close collaboration with Yatheesh Vadakkeyakath, K.A. Kamesh Raju, G.C. Bhattacharya and S. Kiranmai of the National Institute of Oceanography in Goa, India. The project follows on from a successful French-Australian collaboration that unraveled a new high-resolution plate model of the Australia-Antarctica-India plate boundaries, while similar information was obtained for the India-Antarctica-Africa plate boundaries under two recently concluded Indo-French collaborations. These two results will now be synthesized into a unified model of high-resolution plate reconstructions for the East Gondwanaland fragments. These synthesized results will allow testing different continental fit reconstruction models by using a variety of reconstructed data sets and different plate circuits while accommodating various known microcontinents/ continental fragments. The revised reconstruction models are expected to provide tighter constraints for India-Eurasia collision and Himalayan Orogeny. It is hoped the studies will be extended to understand the genesis of some of the major tectonic features of the region. 

April 2011
Post-docs Nicolas Flament, Christian Heine, Jo Whittaker and Simon Williams, along with students Ana Gibbons, Charmaine Thomas and Luke Mondy presented their research at the EGU General Assembly in Vienna, which this year attracted 10,725 scientists geoscientists. Christian Heine and Ana Gibbons co-chaired the session "Unresolved problems in plate tectonics: kinematic reconstructions, plate driving forces, and plate boundary interactions, and Nicolas Flament co-chaired the session "Early Earth: from deep dynamics to surface life"   Click for more info on the EGU General Assembly 

March 2011
Patrice attended an Auscope meeting to present the view of Structural Geologists and Tectonicists on Underworld.

February 2011
An Integrated Ocean Drilling (IODP) workshop on Indian Ocean Drilling to be held in late 2011 in Goa, India has just been approved, funded by $33,000 from IODP, and supported by the Australian IODP Office, which plans to send 15 Australians and Kiwis to the meeting, including EarthByte's Dietmar Müller, and Stephen Gallagher (UMelb), Neville Exon (ANU), Richard Arculus (ANU), Mike Coffin (Tasmania) and Richard Wysoczanski (NZ, NIWA). The workshop is timed to suit an April 2012 drilling proposal submission deadline. In line with the new IODP science plan, the proposed workshop would broadly cover the following four themes: 1. Cenozoic oceanography, climate change, gateways and reef development. 2. The history of the monsoons. 3. Tectonics and volcanism. 4. The deep biosphere. Because there has been no drilling in the Indian Ocean for nearly a decade, this workshop is seen as vital in building the international scientific alliances that can lead to further strong proposals. EarthByte has many ongoing projects focused on Indian Ocean research, including a French-Australian Science and Technology (FAST) project on Indian Ocean tectonics (Dietmar Müller, Jerome Dyment (IPG Paris), Jo Whittaker, Ana Gibbons), an upcoming research cruise on the Southern Surveyor to the Perth Abyssal Plain (Jo Whittaker, Simon Williams, Dietmar Müller,), a Statoil-funded industry project focused on the early evolution of the Indian Ocean (Dietmar Müller, Jo Whittaker, Ana Gibbons), and several other projects (ARC Discovery and Linkage) with global themes, but including strong Indian Ocean components, e.g. focused on continental margins surrounding the Indian Ocean, such as Australia's Northwest Shelf (Christian Heine, Aedon Talsma), the evolution and closure of the Tethys ocean, and India-Eurasia collision (Maria Seton, Sabin Zahirovic, Nicolas Flament, Dietmar Müller) and the evolution of the topography and segmentation of the Indian Ocean floor (Kara Matthews, Dietmar Müller, Jo Whittaker and Paul Wessel (Hawaii).  

We welcome a new PhD student Logan Yeo who will be working with Dietmar and Christian! 

January 2011
Patrice joined the editorial board of Lithosphere, a new journal published by the Geological Society of America.  

This month saw the release of the proceedings of the 2010 Theo Murphy High Flyers Think Tank, which was held at the Australian Academy of Sciences in August 2010 and brought together the nation's top geoscience researchers, including EarthByte's Prof. Dietmar Müller and Dr Thomas Landgrebe, to address challenges in mineral exploration. Dietmar and Thomas chaired a breakout group discussion on 'Computational, information management and modelling advances' and Dietmar presented a talk on 'Knowledge discovery via a virtual geological observatory'.   Click for full article.  Click for the complete Think Tank Proceedings.

GPlates 1.0 has been released!   Click to download GPlates 1.0

EarthByte News Archive






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