Department News

Louise H. Kellogg portraitLouise H. Kellogg | In memoriam: 1959-2019

Our colleague and dear friend, Distinguished Professor Louise Kellogg, passed away on April 15, 2019.  Louise built innumerable ties among people, using her outstanding science, trans-disciplinary vision, and dedication to equity. Her family, friends and colleagues around the world are grieving her loss. Messages of sympathy and memories of Louise may be sent to If you wish to have your message included on this web page, please let us know

Louise Kellogg Memorial Fund. Make a gift in support of first generation students studying Earth and Planetary Sciences at UC Davis. This support represents one of the many passions of Distinguished Professor Louise H. Kellogg.

Louise Kellogg: Geoscientist, Mentor, Science Communicator

From EOS: This article is part of a Centennial series recognizing eminent Earth and space scientists. Our series presents scientific journeys, as well as “family portraits” of the luminaries and their scientific progeny—the students, postdocs, and collaborators who have received inspiration, encouragement, and guidance from these leading lights of science. Learn more about the lasting legacy of Louise Kellogg.

30 Years of UC Davis Students’ Prized Writing

Prized Writing, published by the University Writing Program, or UWP, in the College of Letters and Science, showcases nonfiction works by undergraduates in disciplines all across campus. James "Huck" Rees, who graduated in 2018 with a degree in geology, is featured in Prized Writing (2019-2020).

New study suggests gigantic masses in Earth’s mantle untouched for more than 4 billion years

From GeoSpace: "Ancient, distinct, continent-sized regions of rocks, isolated since before the collision that created the Moon 4.5 billion years ago, exist hundreds of miles below the Earth’s crust, offering a window into the building blocks of our planet, according to new research. The new study in the AGU Journal Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems used models to trace the location and origin of volcanic rock samples found throughout the world back to two solid continents in the deep mantle. The new research suggests the specific giant rock regions have existed for 4.5 billion years, since Earth’s beginning." Curtis Williams is lead author of the study, with Sujoy Mukhopadhyay, Max Rudolph and Barbara Romanioqicz (UC Berkeley).

Mike OskinMike Oskin | 2019 Best Paper Award, GSA Structure and Tectonics Division

 A 2016 paper co-authored by Mike Oskin, John Fletcher and Orlando Teran (Fletcher et al., 2016) will be honored with the 2019 Best Paper Award at the Structure and Tectonics Division meeting during the GSA 2019 Annual Meeting. This paper laid out what they call the 'Keystone Fault Hypothesis' for control of crustal stress, inspired by faulting and aftershock data from the 2010 El Mayor-Cucapah Earthquake.

Sarah StewartSarah Stewart | Planetary Collisions Can Drop the Internal Pressures in Planets

Researchers present a new paradigm for understanding how pressures in planets evolve. "Previous studies have incorrectly assumed that a planet's internal pressure is simply a function of the mass of the planet, and so it increases continuously as the planet grows. What we've shown is that the pressure can temporarily change after a major impact, followed by a longer term increase in pressure as the post-impact body recovers. This finding has major implications for the planet's chemical structure and subsequent evolution," says Simon Lock, postdoctoral researcher at Caltech and lead author of a paper explaining the new model that was published by Science Advances. Lock authored the paper with colleague Sarah Stewart. 

Sandy CarlsonSandy CarlsonGilbert Harris Award

The Gilbert Harris Award is given annually by the Paleontological Research Institution, in recognition of excellence in contributions to systematic paleontology, to a scientist who, through outstanding research and commitment to the centrality of systematics in paleontology, has made a significant contribution to the science. The award will be presented to Sandy Carlson at the annual Friends of PRI reception at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America on Monday, September 23 at 5:30 pm in Phoenix.

Tessa HillTessa HillThe Paleo Climate of California

From Sierra Club: : What ancient coral can tell us about climate change. The field of paleoclimatology—the study of past climate change on our planet—is booming. For Dr. Hill, the most critical answers are still waiting to be discovered.

more news