Prof. Swanson-Hysell is an Earth scientist whose research seeks to place quantitative constraints on the long-term evolution of Earth through integrating geophysical and geochemical data sets that are developed within a rigorous geologic context. A major focus of this research is on paleomagnetic and rock magnetic data sets, often from stratigraphic sequences, that his research group develops in order to test hypotheses about the migrating positions of continents (paleogeography), changes to the surface environment (particularly planetary climate change), and the evolution of Earth’s magnetic field. Hypotheses abound in Earth science related to major transitions such as the reorganization of continental blocks into and out of supercontinents and the initiation and terminations of ice ages including global glaciation. Our research projects bring quantitative constraints to such changes, including their timing and rates, in order to test such hypotheses and further understanding of Earth’s long-term evolution.
Research Expertise and Interest
geology, stratigraphy, paleomagnetism, paleogeography
September 24, 2020
The Greenland ice sheet owes its existence to the growth of an arc of islands in Southeast Asia — stretching from Sumatra to New Guinea — over the last 15 million years, a new study claims.
April 11, 2019
University of California scientists think they know why Earth’s generally warm and balmy climate over the past billion years has occasionally been interrupted by cold snaps that enshroud the poles with ice and occasionally turn the planet into a snowball. The key trigger, they say, is mountain formation in the tropics as continental land masses collide with volcanic island arcs, such as the Aleutian Islands chain in Alaska.