Dynamics of the Basin and Range
In addition to its visually spectacular landscape and geomorphology, the Basin and Range province boasts a world-class geodynamic wonderland.
Geodynamics is the study of forces that drive and resist motion or deformation of the Earth. Our group uses geodetically determined surface velocities, together with other data, to unravel the contributions from the driving forces that cause these motions. Our principle tool is space geodesy, which includes the Global Positioning System (GPS), and Interferometric Synthetic Aperature Radar (InSAR). We perform periodic surveys and install semi-permanent remote sensors (e.g. MAGNET) that measure crustal deformation.
Our projects vary in scale from the individual fault (e.g. transient deformations at Lake Tahoe), plate boundary scale deformation patterns (e.g. across the Basin and Range), to the global (e.g. the Global Strain Rate Map).
Examples of specific research questions we consider are:
- How do Pacific/North America plate boundary tractions influence deformation of the Great Basin?
- How is stress transferred across the San Andreas fault and California into the Great Basin?
- What is the role of gravity in deformation of the Basin and Range?
- Flesch, L.M., and C. Kreemer, 2010. Gravitational potential energy and regional stress and strain rate fields for continental plateaus: Examples from the central Andes and Colorado Plateau. Tectonophysics, Vol. 482, p. 182-192.
- Blewitt, G., C. Kreemer, and W.C. Hammond (2009). Geodetic observation of contemporary deformation in the northern Walker Lane: 1. Semipermanent GPS strategy, p. 1–15, doi: 10.1130/2009.2447(03).
(link to GSA)
- Kreemer C., G. Blewitt, and W.C. Hammond (2009). Geodetic constraints on contemporary deformation in the northern Walker Lane: 2. Velocity and strain rate tensor analysis, p. 17–31, doi: 10.1130/2009.2447(03).
(link to GSA)
- Hammond, W.C., C. Kreemer, and G. Blewitt (2009). Geodetic constraints on contemporary deformation in the northern Walker Lane: 3. Central Nevada seismic belt postseismic relaxation, p. 33–54, doi: 10.1130/2009.2447(03).
(link to GSA)
- Kreemer, C., and W.C. Hammond, 2007. Geodetic constraints on areal changes in the Pacific-North America plate boundary zone: What controls Basin and Range extension? Geology, Vol. 35, p. 943-946, 2007.
Here is a Link
to a related perspective article.
- Hammond, W.C. and W. Thatcher, 2007. Crustal Deformation across the Sierra Nevada, Northern Walker Lane, Basin and Range transition, western United States measured with GPS, 2000-2004, Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 112, B05411, doi:10.1029/2006JB004625. 2007.
- Pancha, A., J.G. Anderson, and C. Kreemer, 2006. Comparison of seismic and geodetic scalar moment rates across the Basin and Range Province. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, Vol. 96, 11-32.
- Hammond, W.C., 2005. The ghost of an earthquake. Science, Vol. 310, p. 1440-1442.
- Hammond, W.C., and W. Thatcher, 2005. Northwest Basin and Range tectonic deformation observed with the Global Positioning System, 1999-2000. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 110, B10405, doi:10.1029/2005JB003678.
- Hammond, W.C. and W. Thatcher, 2004. Contemporary tectonic deformation of the Basin and Range province, western United States: 10 years of observation with the Global Positioning System. J. Geophys. Res., 109(B8), 8403, doi:10.1029/2003JB002746.
- Hammond, W.C., 2004. Vertical motion of the Basin and Range, western United States from 10 Years of Campaign GPS. In T. van Dam & O. Francis (eds): Cahiers du Centre European de Geodynamique et de Seismologie, Vol. 23, p. 131-136.
- Smith, K.D., D. von Seggern, G. Blewitt , L. Preston, J.G. Anderson, B.P. Wernicke, J.L. Davis, 2004. Evidence for deep magma injection beneath Lake Tahoe, Nevada-California. Science, doi:10.1126/science.1101304.
Other sources of information: