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Regional Structural Geology of Earth and Mars


Quinn, Daven Patel (2018) Regional Structural Geology of Earth and Mars. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/9enj-wn23.


This thesis explores the geologic context around several key environmental transitions on Earth and Mars which are expressed at continental margins. Regional mapping techniques are applied to build links between methodologies used to explore rock samples and units — stratigraphy, structural geology, remote sensing, geochemistry, petrology, and geodynamic modeling. Four research projects are presented: Chapter 2 explores the tectonic context of xenoliths beneath the western margin of North America and illuminates the structural history of the lithospheric underpinnings of the California coast. In Chapter 3, we undertake a structural study of the southern Naukluft Mountains, Namibia, and re-interpret its tectonic context and age. Chapter 4 builds a new method for applying statistical errors to remotely measured planar orientations, and Chapter 5 applies this method to mapping the 3D structure of a globally significant stratigraphy on Mars. We find a long history of interaction with water at the margin of Isidis Basin. Together, these projects demonstrate the application of structural techniques to continental margins on Earth and Mars, and the creation of new techniques to support geological analysis from remotely-sensed data, where structural measurements may be poorly resolved.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:geology ; sedimentology ; planetary science
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Geological and Planetary Sciences
Major Option:Geology
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Ehlmann, Bethany L. (advisor)
  • Grotzinger, John P. (co-advisor)
Group:Astronomy Department
Thesis Committee:
  • Stock, Joann M. (chair)
  • Eiler, John M.
  • Asimow, Paul David
  • Ehlmann, Bethany L.
  • Grotzinger, John P.
Defense Date:2 May 2018
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NASA Earth and Space Science FellowshipNNX14AO61H
Agouron FoundationJPG-GIFT-1
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:05282018-115947263
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Plate 1: Preliminary geologic map of the southern Naukluft Mountains[Interactive] Geologic map of the southern Naukluft Mountains Plate 2: Stratigraphic columns of the Zebra Nappe, Southern Naukluft Mountains, Namibia
https:/ sections of the Zebra Nappe (Dissertation plate 5.2)
Quinn, Daven Patel0000-0003-1895-3742
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:10953
Deposited By: Daven Quinn
Deposited On:19 Jun 2018 00:02
Last Modified:12 Nov 2021 20:19

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