From rifting to drifting: evidence from rifts and margins worldwide mini-workshop

 icon-map-marker Grand Hyatt San Francisco
345 Stockton Street, San Francisco, CA
Union Square Room – 36th Floor
Sunday December 13, 2015, 8 – 1:30pm

Followed by the STEPPE Workshop:”Lake Tanganyika: A Miocene-Recent Source-to-Sink Laboratory in the African Tropics”

Thank you for your participation in the Mini-Workshop From rifting to drifting: evidence from rifts and margins worldwide at the 2015 AGU Fall Meeting! Pictures of all GeoPRISMS activities at AGU are available here.

Download the participant list


Rebecca Bendick (University of Montana), Ian Bastow (Imperial College London), Tyrone Rooney (Michigan State University), Harm van Avendonk (Univ. Texas Institute for Geophysics, UT-Austin), Jolante van Wijk (New Mexico Tech)

AnnouncementPresentation archiveVenueSTEPPE WorkshopRead the report

The purpose of this workshop is to facilitate discussion on the current state of research into continental extension. Our aim is to be broadly inclusive by bringing an audience with widely varying backgrounds to a common understanding of the state of the art in this field. Our ultimate goal will then be to pursue a discussion on future research challenges for the community and how these challenges align with the existing science plans for the GeoPRISMS Eastern North America and East African Rift Focus Sites. We will organize this meeting around the following themes:

1. Melt generation in extensional environments: Mantle decompression, thermal state and composition of the mantle.

2. Magma-lithosphere interaction: diking, metasomatism, thermal weakening, changing the composition of the lithosphere, coupling between deformation and melt migration.

3. Stretching of the lithosphere: Strain localization in brittle and ductile rheology,  rates of extension, punctuated events.

4. Feedback loops – rifting and surface processes: sedimentation, margin architecture

5. Rifting and oceanic spreading – the missing link: Lithospheric breakup, focusing of melt delivery,  evolution of mantle deformation

Rebecca Bendick (University of Montana)
Ian Bastow (Imperial College London)
Tyrone Rooney (Michigan State University)
Harm van Avendonk (Univ. Texas Institute for Geophysics, UT-Austin)
Jolante van Wijk (New Mexico Tech)

Topic 1: Melt Generation in Extensional Environments
8:00-8:30: Overview talk by Tyrone Rooney
8:30-8:45: Panel discussion moderated by Harm van Avendonk

Topic 2: Magma-lithosphere interaction
8:45-9:15: Magma-lithosphere interaction | Chris Havlin
9:15-9:30: Panel discussion moderated by Ian Bastow

9:30-10:00 Coffee

Topic 3: Stretching the lithosphere
10:00-10:30: Stretching of the lithosphere |  Suzon Jammes
10:30-10:45: Panel discussion moderated by Rebecca Bendick

Topic 4: Rifting and Oceanic Spreading
10:45-11:15: Rifting and oceanic spreading – the focusing of melt delivery in space and time | Derek Keir
11:15-11:30: Panel discussion moderated by Jolante van Wijk

11:30-12:30 Lunch outside the venue

12:30-13:00: Summary of current results
13:00-13:30: Avenues for future study

Grand Hyatt, Union Square Room, 36th floor

STEPPE Workshop: “Lake Tanganyika: A Miocene-Recent Source-to-Sink Laboratory in the African Tropics”

Conveners: Michael McGlue (University of Kentucky) and Christopher Scholz (Syracuse University)

2pm – 8:30pm

Description: This STEPPE workshop will investigate source-to-sink processes through an examination of the Lake Tanganyika rift (East Africa), which faithfully records profound signals of tectonics, climate variability, and surface processes in a high-continuity sedimentary archive. The workshop will bring together inter-disciplinary experts to discuss the geodynamic, atmospheric, hydrologic, and biological processes affecting the Tanganyika hinterland that influence sediment generation and transport, as well as the limnological and depositional processes influencing stratal architecture and the composition of sediment. Lake Tanganyika is widely considered to be the premier target to recover a long-term, high resolution record of tropical climate, evolutionary biology, and rift tectonics via scientific drilling, and it is also an active frontier petroleum basin. The goal of the workshop is to lay the framework for future scientific drilling and consider the best pathways for deconvolving forcing mechanisms from the depositional signal, potentially through the application of new analytical techniques, integration of large digital datasets, or process modeling. Interested participants (especially early career scientists – students, post-docs, etc.) are encouraged to participate and contact the conveners for more information ( or