Model of Australia’s Tectonic Stress May Future-Proof Carbon Storage

In response to ever-rising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, some countries are exploring carbon sequestration as a way to mitigate the effects of this greenhouse gas. The general strategy is to inject carbon dioxide more than a mile underground, beneath an impermeable rock layer, where it can dissolve into fluids and crystallize. Injection locations … Read more…

Setting up environment for DCO Demo Analysis

Mac Environment 1.1) Install Anaconda Navigate to the continuum website and download the python 2.7 Mac version of Anaconda, if not already installed. In terminal, where the downloaded anaconda source code is stored, type: bash Anaconda2-4.1.1-MacOSX-x86_64.sh Select yes to all of the prompts. Edit your .bash_profile to include the anaconda bin path in the PATH … Read more…

Deep Carbon Modelling Workshop

Date:  August 29 – 30 2016 Venue: The University of Sydney Description: A two-day workshop bringing together climate and geo-scientists from around Sydney and international collaborators on the DCO-funded Deep Carbon Modelling project. Deep carbon science describes the multi-disciplinary effort to unravel the dynamic interactions of carbon-bearing systems in deep time. The workshop will focus on exploring the interplays … Read more…

Calculating arc-trench distances using the Smithsonian Global Volcanism Project database

Figure 1. Using ArcMap to visualise and calculate the distances between volcano locations (data points, yellow triangles) and subduction zones (black polylines).   Based on a study of 20 selected segments of arc-trench systems, Dickson (1973) found that the distance between trench axes to magmatic arc axes (or volcanic front) ranged from between 100 to 300 km … Read more…

Visualising the influence of oceanic crust characteristics on subduction CO2 flux

How significant is the crustal carbon reservoir? The incorporation of CO2 in oceanic crust and carbon-rich seafloor sediments facilitates the removal of carbon in the world’s oceans. At subduction zones, CO2 is recycled in the mantle.  Our interest in modelling the CO2 flux budget between the oceanic crust and the mantle is to investigate the long-term balance between CO2 sources and CO2 … Read more…

Workflow explained: analysing the composition of subducted oceanic crust through time

How can we sample the composition of subducting crust throughout deep time? Using a similar method as our subduction zone analysis, we developed a workflow to sample oceanic crust composition along subduction zones. We wanted to observe the composition of the upper oceanic crust as it subducts. From our previous analysis we are able to resolve and extract … Read more…

Modelling CO2, subduction zone volcanism and carbonate platform interactions

During the Cretaceous to early Paleogene, atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide reached levels of 1 200 – 2 400 ppm. Concurrently, subduction zone lengths reached lengths of up to 52 000 km based on previous estimates, and were dominated by continental arcs. Continent-sourced carbonates too have a significant impact on CO2 flux from subduction volcanism. As continental arcs … Read more…

Workflow explained: The interaction of subduction zone volcanism with carbonate platforms and continents

Objectives Our two objectives of analysis were to (a) quantify the km-long length areas of interaction of subduction zone volcanism with carbonate platforms and (b) characterise the subduction volcanism as either continental or intra-oceanic depending on the proximity of the subduction zones to continent-ocean boundaries. In regards to the first objective, we are interested in cases where subduction-related … Read more…

Workflow explained: Measuring global subduction zone lengths with pyGPlates

For our first analysis, we developed a simple work flow to quantify subduction zone lengths from 0 to 400 Ma, using the Matthews et al. (2016) plate kinematic model. The bash workflow consists of python scripts, GMT tools and AWK scripts organised into bash sub-routine functions. The most integral parts of the workflow are the python scripts … Read more…

Creating an evolving model of carbonate platform development and accumulation

What do crustal carbonates have to do with CO2 emissions? The proliferation of reefs and carbonate platforms in shallow-water environments contribute to accumulation of organic-C-rich carbonate rocks along the edge of continents. These platforms are a persistent phenomenon throughout the Phanerozoic and strongly suggests that large volumes of carbonates are buried in the upper crust within the … Read more…

Deep Carbon Modelling and Visualisation Project

The Deep Carbon Observatory (DCO) is a 10-year international research initiative to connect scientists from diverse fields and facilitate collaborative research and technology development in the field of deep carbon science. In order to address barriers to communicating the planetary carbon cycle to the public, a Modeling and Visualization workshop was held in May 2015 in Washington D.C. to bring … Read more…