GPlately1.3 released

We end 2023 with the release of GPlately1.3, with a number of bugfixes and improvements. The cool functionality of GPlately includes generating gridded oceanic crustal ages and seafloor spreading rates from plate models with evolving plate boundaries – see example below using a plate model in a mantle reference frame. Happy holidays from the EarthByte … Read more…

GPlates 2.4 released

GPlates 2.4 released A note about GPlates 2.4:- This release contains mostly bug fixes (compared to GPlates 2.3). We’ve also added some Scientific Colour Maps by Fabio Crameri to our builtin colour palettes. However, most new functionality is still in development and will go into the GPlates 3.0 release (late 2024). This is because it depends on the graphics … Read more…

Welcome Hojat Shirmard to the team

Hojat

We welcome our new PhD candidate Hojat Shirmard to join the team. Hojat is a PhD candidate in the EarthByte Group, School of Geosciences, University of Sydney. He holds a MSc degree in Mining Engineering – Mineral Exploration from the University of Tehran. He has experience doing more than 200 mineral exploration projects in different … Read more…

Nature: Landscape dynamics and the Phanerozoic diversification of the biosphere

The long-term diversification of the biosphere responds to changes in the physical environment. Yet, over the continents, the nearly monotonic expansion of life started later in the early part of the Phanerozoic eon1 than the expansion in the marine realm, where instead the number of genera waxed and waned over time2. A comprehensive evaluation of … Read more…

EarthByte Seminar Series: Prof. Dietmar Müller

Explore Earth’s Deep Carbon Cycle with Prof. Dietmar Müller’s Tectono-Thermodynamic Modelling! In this EarthByte Seminar Series event, Dietmar talks about the “tectonic carbon conveyor belt,” its role in emitting, storing, and releasing carbon, and its impact on Earth’s climate through the ages.

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EarthByte Seminar Series: Dr. Ehsan Farahbakhsh

Join us for an insightful seminar with Dr. Ehsan Farahbakhsh from the EarthByte Group. In this EarthByte Seminar Series event, Ehsan will delve into the intricate dynamics of porphyry copper-gold (Cu-Au) mineralization in Papua New Guinea using machine learning methods.

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New Technologies in Mineral Exploration: Drilling, Lasers and Ore Deposit Targeting – Talk by Caroline Tiddy

We are excited to have Assoc Prof Caroline Tiddy from the University of South Australia visiting us in person to present her amazing work on new technologies in mineral exploration on Wednesday, 1 Nov, 1pm, Madsen Room 449. Abstract Our world is embarking on a green transition to see us move towards a low carbon … Read more…

Environmental controls on the resilience of Scott Reefs since the Miocene (North West Shelf, Australia): Insights from 3D seismic data

North and South Scott Reefs are isolated carbonate platforms separated by an inter-reef channel on the NWS, Australia. They evolved from a barrier reef in the Miocene, and into isolated carbonate build-ups (ICB’s) during the Pliocene, and finally to the isolated carbonate platforms that continued to present day. However, the timings of coral reef turn … Read more…

The role of surface processes in basin inversion and breakup unconformity

In the context of continental extension, transient compressional episodes (stress inversion) and phases of uplift (depth inversion) are commonly recorded with no corresponding change in plate motion. Changes in gravitational potential energy during the rifting process have been invoked as a possible source of compressional stresses, but their magnitude, timing, and relationship with depth inversions … Read more…

The Role of Isostasy in the Evolution and Architecture of Fold and Thrust Belts

Warmer conditions prevalent in the hinterland of orogenic systems facilitate local ductile flow underneath the surface load, making Airy-like local isostasy more prevalent in these domains. In contrast, flexural isostasy better describes the regional response to surface loading of more rigid lithospheres. Here, we explore how the interaction between horizontal tectonic mass transfer and vertical … Read more…

Welcome to Zijing Luo

Zijing Luo

We welcome our new visiting overseas student Zijing Luo from China University of Geosciences. She is in Room 410, Madsen Building and you are welcome to drop by and say hello. Her research project is “Interpretable deep learning algorithm for Mineral Prospectively Mapping”.  Below is her research project summary. Deep learning (DL) algorithms have been … Read more…

EarthByte Seminar Series: A/Prof Fabio A. Capitanio

Join us for an enlightening seminar with A/Prof Fabio A. Capitanio from  Monash University. In this EarthByte Seminar Series event, Fabio will lead us on a captivating journey through the complex dynamics of convergent margins. He will uncover his latest research and insights into seismic forces, plate interactions, and the paradigm of subduction.

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EOS: Shifts in Tectonic Plates Change Biodiversity

For the past 250 million years, species have diversified and died out while Earth’s tectonic plate movements and sea level changes have operated in the background. They’re linked, according to new research that found that processes altering the lithosphere affect ocean levels and, in turn, the availability of shallow marine environments in which life thrives. “Why we … Read more…

New Home for the GPlates Source Code

After keeping GPlates source code on SVN and SourceForge for nearly two decades, we are thrilled to unveil the new home for the GPlates source code at https://github.com/GPlates/GPlates. Although GPlates is a well-established project, it is new to GitHub.com, and as such, the current count of GitHub Stars doesn’t accurately mirror our true success and popularity. If … Read more…

Welcome to Jianping Zhou

We welcome our new postdoctoral researcher, Jianping Zhou, visiting for 2-3 years from the Ocean University of China in Qingdao. He obtained his undergraduate degree from Jilin University in China and completed his Ph.D. at the University of Göttingen, Germany. His research primarily focuses on the basin-and-range evolution in Eastern Asia and associated ore deposits. He plans on … Read more…

GPlates finalist in Australian Museum Eureka Prize for Excellence in Research Software

GPlates has been shortlisted for one of the 18 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes in 2023 – the Australian Research Data Commons Eureka Prize for Excellence in Research Software thanks to over 15 years of support by the AuScope National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy.  

Scientific Reports: A geospatial platform for the tectonic interpretation of low‐temperature thermochronology Big Data

Low‐temperature thermochronology is a powerful tool for constraining the thermal evolution of rocks and minerals in relation to a breadth of tectonic, geodynamic, landscape evolution, and natural resource formation processes through deep time. However, complexities inherent to these analytical techniques can make interpreting the significance of results challenging, requiring them to be placed in their … Read more…

Scientific Reports: Kimberlite eruptions driven by slab flux and subduction angle

Kimberlites are sourced from thermochemical upwellings which can transport diamonds to the surface of the crust. The majority of kimberlites preserved at the Earth’s surface erupted between 250 and 50 million years ago, and have been attributed to changes in plate velocity or mantle plumes. However, these mechanisms fail to explain the presence of strong … Read more…

Scientists discover 36-million-year geological cycle that drives biodiversity

11 July 2023 Tectonic changes alter sea levels that can create breeding grounds for life Movement in the Earth’s tectonic plates indirectly triggers bursts of biodiversity in 36-million-year cycles by forcing sea levels to rise and fall, new research has shown. Dinosaur Stampede exhibit at Dinosaur Canyon, located in Queensland’s Winton Formation which was formed … Read more…

PNAS: Earth’s interior dynamics drive marine fossil diversity cycles of tens of millions of years

The fossil record reveals that biotic diversity has fluctuated quasi-cyclically through geological time. However, the causal mechanisms of biotic diversity cycles remain unexplained. Here, we highlight a common, correlatable 36 ± 1 Myr (million years) cycle in the diversity of marine genera as well as in tectonic, sea-level, and macrostratigraphic data over the past 250 … Read more…

Deep time spatio-temporal data analysis using pyGPlates with PlateTectonicTools and GPlately

PyGPlates is an open-source Python library to visualize and edit plate tectonic reconstructions created using GPlates. The Python API affords a greater level of flexibility than GPlates to interrogate plate reconstructions and integrate with other Python workflows. GPlately was created to accelerate spatio-temporal data analysis leveraging pyGPlates and PlateTectonicTools within a simplified Python interface. This … Read more…

Tectonics: Modeling Lithospheric Thickness Along the Conjugate South Atlantic Passive Margins Implies Asymmetric Rift Initiation

The lithospheric architecture of passive margins is crucial for understanding the tectonic processes that caused the breakup of Gondwana. We highlight the evolution of the South Atlantic passive margins by a simple thermal lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) model based on onset and cessation of rifting, crustal thickness, and stretching factors. We simulate lithospheric thinning and select … Read more…

GPlately1.0 released

We have just released GPlately1.0 as a conda package. GPlately was created to accelerate spatio-temporal data analysis leveraging pyGPlates and PlateTectonicTools within a simplified Python interface. GPlately is a python package that enables the reconstruction of data through deep geologic time (points, lines, polygons and rasters), the interrogation of plate kinematic information (plate velocities, rates of subduction … Read more…

Clarke Memorial Lecture: Reconstructing ancient oceans, sea-level fluctuations, the deep carbon cycle and biodiversity

The Royal Society of NSW Clarke Memorial Open Lecture on Wednesday 5 April 2023 will be delivered by Dietmar Müller on “Reconstructing ancient oceans, sea-level fluctuations, the deep carbon cycle and biodiversity”. Venue: Gallery Room, State Library of NSW, Shakespeare Place Abstract This presentation is a journey through geological time, reconstructing ancient oceans that have … Read more…

Evolution of Mantle Plumes and Lower Mantle Structure in Numerical Models Using Tectonic Reconstructions as Boundary Conditions

We evaluate four mantle convection models that use tectonic reconstructions to specify kinematic boundary conditions to explore the development of the lower mantle large low shear velocity provinces (LLSVP) structures and their relationship with mantle plumes. Evolution of mantle plumes in our spherical models is broadly consistent with observations including the number of plumes generated … Read more…

Science: Hundred million years of landscape dynamics from catchment to global scale

Our capability to reconstruct past landscapes and the processes that shape them underpins our understanding of paleo-Earth. We take advantage of a global-scale landscape evolution model assimilating paleoelevation and paleoclimate reconstructions over the past 100 million years. This model provides continuous quantifications of metrics critical to the understanding of the Earth system, from global physiography … Read more…

Nature Reviews Earth and Environment: Deconstructing plate tectonic reconstructions

The evolving mosaic of tectonic plates across the surface of the Earth sets boundary conditions for the evolution of biotic and abiotic processes and helps shape the dynamics of its interior. Reconstructing plate tectonics back through time allows scientists from a range of disciplines (such as palaeobiology, palaeoclimate, geodynamics and seismology) to investigate Earth evolution … Read more…

Geology: The role of surface processes in basin inversion and breakup unconformity

In the context of continental extension, transient compressional episodes (stress inversion) and phases of uplift (depth inversion) are commonly recorded with no corresponding change in plate motion. Changes in gravitational potential energy during the rifting process have been invoked as a possible source of compressional stresses, but their magnitude, timing, and relationship with depth inversions … Read more…

Terra Nova: Brief immersion of southern Australia by change in relative plate speed

Dynamic subsidence and uplift of plates are often explained by the vertical motion of density anomalies in the mantle. Such models predict surface vertical motion rates of less than 100 m Myr−1 at long-wavelengths with a timespan of tens of Myr. However, during periods of relative sea-level stability, some of the phases of vertical motion … Read more…