Posts tagged with “Departmental News” (All posts)

  • In February 2012, Assistant Professor of Geology Sarah Titus received a prestigious CAREER grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a five-year research project on oceanic fault lines. The $418,891 grant will enable Titus to undertake field work at three unique locations where oceanic “transform faults” are exposed above sea level: New Caledonia (in the south Pacific), Cyprus, and Iceland. This field work will feed into an elaborate and groundbreaking effort to quantitatively model the faults.

  • As I approach retirement – my successor Jonathon Cooper starts as our new Technical Director in a couple of days – I search for some profound and meaningful comment to make about my experience at Carleton over the past 36 school years.  But if I were a profound person I would have been a philosopher or a theorist rather than a technical director, so maybe I should just keep it simple.  I have enjoyed my work at Carleton immensely.  The place, the people, and the subject of geology have all been interesting and rewarding. 

    I am leaving the Carleton Geology Department in good hands, and I know that the faculty, Jon Cooper as the new Technical Director, Ellen Haberoth, and current and future students all will take good care of the Geology Department and help it thrive into the future.

    There is absolutely no question that the very best part of my experience in all these years has been getting to meet and work with well over a thousand wonderful people at Carleton. 

  • The New XRD Machine Is Delivered

    22 February 2011

    XRD Panalytical Empyrean machineWe are excited that our new x-ray diffractometer, funded by a National Science Foundation grant of $305,000, has been delivered and is now being readied for use.  In the picture, Cam Davidson (on the right) is being shown the innards of the beast by Panalytical installation technician Stephen Strong.

    Authors of the grant proposal were Melissa Eblen-Zayas of the Physics Department, Steve Drew, Chemistry Department, and Cam Davidson from the Geology Department.  The new machine is housed in the Geology Department and replaces the old XRD that dated from the late 1980s.

    X-ray diffraction has many uses in both geology and chemistry.  In geology, we often use it to identify minerals by crushing rocks into a powder and then running the powder through the machine.  The machine will analyze diffracted x-rays emanating from the sample and run the results through a database to find the mineral identities and relative abundance.

    From the proposal:  “X-rays have a wavelength that is comparable to the spaces between atoms in many materials. For this reason, x-rays can provide a powerful probe for exploring materials at a level that cannot be achieved with visible light, which has a much larger wavelength. This project will support the purchase of a multipurpose x-ray diffractometer to characterize a wide variety of materials, including materials that might be useful for various kinds of chemical and magnetic sensors and clays that can help us understand the climate history of southeast Alaska. In addition to enabling multidisciplinary research to promote our understanding of materials composition and structure, the XRD system will play an important role in training the next generation of scientists as it will be integrated into the curriculum as well as providing research experiences for undergraduate students in chemistry, geology, and physics at Carleton College.”

  • Cam DavidsonIn November 2010, Cameron Davidson, Associate Professor of Geology, received a $20,000 grant from the Keck Geology Consortium to undertake field research in Alaska. Working with a collaborator at Union College (Schenectady, NY) and six undergraduate researchers, Davidson will seek to understand the tectonic evolution of unusual geological features on Kodiak Island and western Prince William Sound. The fieldwork will take place in summer 2011.

  • Update on Thurs., Nov. 18, 2010, at 4:30 p.m. CST

    Carleton’s administrative leadership team has issued an update to the flood recovery process. Allen and Prentice Houses are now available and will be occupied by students during winter term. West Gym is also now available, with the basketball and swimming teams resuming practices in those spaces. College officials have met with federal officials as well in regards to possible governmental funds for flood recovery, and bids are out for restorative work to Laird Stadium.



  • More Cannon River Flood Coverage

    24 September 2010
  • An Era Comes To A Close: Tim Vick Announces Intent To Retire

    29 July 2010

    Tim has decided to retire in March 2011.  Let’s face it, the Carleton Geology Department will never be the same.

    To celebrate ‘All Things Tim’, and to show our collective appreciation for his amazing career and service to the College and the Department, we are already planning events: a reception in Mudd during the 2010-11 Academic Year, an event of some sort during Reunion Weekend 2011, and hopefully a big bash here on campus timed to coincide with the October 2011 GSA National Meeting in Minneapolis.  So, keep these dates in mind, and start showering Tim with your emails, cards, phone calls, hugs and casseroles!

    Expect more announcements, dates, and requests (for reminiscences) in the fall.

  • Rolling north through Northfield and Carleton’s Cowling Arboretum is the Cannon River. Although often enjoyed by sunbathers and fishermen along its banks, many people don’t think of the Cannon as a means of transportation. This spring, three friends and I canoed the Cannon from downtown Northfield—and on to Red Wing, Minnesota, where it joins the mighty Mississippi River. The journey lasted 13 hours and covered an ever-changing tableau of landscapes and wildlife.

  • Remembering Eiler Henricksen

    18 June 2010

    A service of celebration and remembrance for Eiler Henrickson ‘43, Carleton College Charles L. Denison Professor of Geology emeritus, was held during Reunion 2010. The service featured readings, reflections, and music, including a performance by several of Eiler’s former students.

    Eiler taught geology at Carleton for 41 years and coached the Carleton wrestling team for 12 seasons. He retired in 1987 and passed away on Dec. 10, 2009.

    See a video of the “Sometime Geology Field Trip Band” performing “Eiler’s Schottische” at the June 18 memorial service, along with two short documentary videos by Aleshia Mueller ’01, at the Remembering Eiler Henrickson page.

  • We are extremely pleased to be able to report that the Dean of the College, Beverly Nagel, has just announced faculty promotions for this year, and Clint Cowan ’83 is being promoted to full professor effective September 1, 2010.  Congratulations, Clint!

    Professor Clint Cowan was educated at Carleton College and earned his M.Sc. in Geology from The University of Michigan in 1985.   After receiving his Master’s degree, he worked as an exploration geologist with Exxon in Houston, Texas, for two years before entering the Ph.D. program at Queen’s University in Kingston Ontario.  He earned his Ph.D. in 1992, and taught at Carleton for one term as a Visiting Professor before taking a position as an International Staff Geologist with Royal Dutch Shell in The Hague, Netherlands.  Five years later, in the fall of 1997, he returned to Carleton and began his present teaching career.