Marine Geology and
All four MARGINS initiatives (Seismogenic Zone, Subduction Factory,
Rupturing of Continental Lithosphere, and Source to Sink) are competing
for ~$5 million in funding in the fourth MARGINS competition. Due to
an earlier submittal deadline (November 1), funding decisions will also
be made earlier, in the February-March 2002 time frame. The Program
has received a total of 37 proposals for this competition (4 for SEIZE,
14 for SubFac, 10 for RCL and 9 for S2S). The RCL proposals include
3 for the Red Sea focus area and 6 for the Gulf of California/Salton
Sea focus area. To encourage wider collaboration with scientists from
countries surrounding the RCL focus site in the Red Sea, the MARGINS
Office recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Saudi
Geological Survey that will promote greater logistical and scientific
cooperation with Saudi Arabia.
The MARGINS community held a workshop in July 2001 on the combined
topics of the Mid Americas Seismogenic Zone and Subduction Factory.
The main objective of the workshop was to provide, with more specificity
than the overall MARGINS Science Plan (see MARGINS web site: http://www.ldeo.columbia.edu/margins/Home.html),
a strategy for implementing studies in the Central America Volcanic
Arc (CAVA) and associated subduction zone. The following topics were
addressed: 1) reconstructions of the incoming plate; 2) incoming plate
structure and history; 3) forearc Structure; 4) forearc deformation;
5) fluid and heat interaction between lower and upper plate; 6) seismogenic
zone earthquakes and earthquake history; 7) deep subduction zone structure;
8) arc volcanism and the output of the subduction factory; 9) arc volatiles;
10) hazards and effects on local populations; and 11) insights from
other regions Nankai, IBM, Japan, and the Aleutians. The workshop
also held several specific planning sessions that included incoming
plate kinematics and their seismic, chemical and volcanic aspects; mass,
fluids, volcanism and heat transfer; and geologic and climatic hazards.
A workshop report will be available in early 2002. To ensure greater
participation in the discussions, the MARGINS community also plans
to hold several town meetings at the Fall AGU on the Nankai and the
Central America Seismogenic Zone Experiments as well as on the Central
America Subduction Factory studies.
A MARGINS Source-to-Sink workshop of community representatives was
convened at NSF in August to review and update their science plan. The
participants were asked to better define the programs objectives
and set priorities, including details of the schedule and sequencing
to implement the science objectives of this initiative. The draft revisions
were incorporated in the S2S science plan in time for the community
to submit proposals for the November 1 deadline.
In other news, the MARGINS Program intends to promulgate a Fellowships
plan for MARGINS that will be incorporated in the MARGINS program announcement
early in 2002. The Fellowship plan is designed to encourage multidisciplinary
research on MARGINS problems related to the four initiatives. The MARGINS
Program has also drafted a data policy statement that will obligate
funded Principal Investigators to meet a series of data management requirements
to maximize collaboration and data transfer within the program.
The RIDGE Program ended on the last day of September, and RIDGE 2000
started the next day. The RIDGE 2000 program announcement is available
on the GEO home page (http://www.nsf.gov/home/geo/).
Information on the RIDGE 2000 program is available on the RIDGE 2000
home page (RIDGE2000.bio.psu.edu). In particular the RIDGE 2000
Program Summary and RIDGE 2000 Integrated Studies Site Selection
Panel Summary of Proceedings provide summaries of the reorganization.
The reorganization of the program began in 1999, and Dave Christie
did an admirable job of guiding the program through the many meetings
and workshops involved. We wish him well in getting back to his research,
as well as Carol Chin, Randy Keller and Chris LeBoeuf who put an incredible
effort into organizing all the meetings and workshops.
Chuck Fisher has been selected as the new chair of the RIDGE 2000 steering
committee and the RIDGE 2000 Office is located at Penn State (221 Mueller
Lab., Penn. State U, University Park, PA; 814-865-7434; RIDGE2000@psu.edu;
In addition to Chuck, the R2K office will be manned by Program Assistant
Patty Nordstrom, Education and Outreach Coordinator Liz Goehring and
an, as yet unnamed, office coordinator.
ESH/MESH: (Marine aspects of) Earth System History
During the last year, MESH took the lead in developing a focused research
effort on Holocene Climate Variability. A workshop organized by the
MESH Program Office and NSF, along with input from the wider scientific
community, identified a series of research questions. Answers to these
questions will provide important clues to the nature of Holocene climate
variability that occurred on human time scales beyond the observed instrumental
record of climate. The workshop resulted in a research plan that outlines
a focused effort on Holocene Climate Variability that will be part of
the ESH Program. The Holocene research plan and priorities can be found
on the NSF Web page (http://www.geo.nsf.gov/cgi-bin/showprog.p1?-id=90&div=oce).
We anticipate that additional focused research efforts will be developed
as part of ESH/MESH over the next few years. If you are interested in
helping to develop a particular research focus, contact Bill Curry at
the MESH Program Office (email@example.com).
MG&G Metadata Management System
Since the FUMAGES workshop in 1996, we have been evaluating infrastructure
issues within the MGG community. Data management has been a long-standing
problem. Last May, Debbie Smith, Suzanne Carbotte, Bill Ryan, Steve
Cande, Steve Miller, and Dawn Wright organized a workshop on Data Management
for Marine Geology and Geophysics. The report of that workshop is available
The workshop resulted in two overarching recommendations: that active
archives be created for all MGG data, and that a searchable metadata
catalog be created. Creation of active archives will, for the most part,
occur on a distributed basis as community needs dictate. Some are already
operational, such as the RIDGE multibeam database. The metadata catalog
does not exist, and we are considering how to implement this recommendation.
Compliance with OCE (http://www.geo.nsf/oce/programs/oceandat.htm)
and NSF data policies has also been a long-standing problem. The NSF
Grant Policy Guide (http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2002/nsf022/nsf0202_2.html)
states that the proposal Project Description should include plans
for preservation, documentation, and sharing of data, samples, physical
collections, curriculum materials and other related research and educational
products. Within MGG we consider this appropriate for all proposals
and ask PIs to tell us how they are complying. Progress reports must
include plans for such compliance, and final reports must document compliance.
Approval of a final report will depend on such compliance, and failure
to document it could delay the processing of any future financial support
for the responsible Principal Investigator.
Brian Midson has joined the MG&G Program as the new Science Assistant,
replacing Lisa Crowder who has chosen a yeo-persons adventurous
life on board the JOIDES Resolution with ODP. Brian hails from the University
of Hawaii and is widely known to many in the MG&G community. Brian
will be happy to answer many of the routine questions from the PIs concerning
the MG&G, MARGINS, RIDGE and MESH proposals, deadline, target dates,
etc. He can be reached at 703-292-7585, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bilal Haq (email@example.com)
Dave Epp (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Rodey Batiza (email@example.com)
Dick Poore (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Brian Midson (email@example.com)