Department of Geology

Elisabeth Widom

Elisabeth Widom Elisabeth Widom

Professor and Departmental Chair

Ph.D. (1991) Univ. of Calif., Santa Cruz
119 Culler Hall

My research involves the application of trace elements and isotope systems (radiogenic and stable) to address a wide variety of geologic problems. Current research foci include investigations of the processes and timescales operating in active magmatic systems (Azores and Japan); the composition and evolution of the Earth's mantle, with ongoing projects on basalts and mantle xenoliths from ocean island settings (Azores and Canary Islands), arc settings (Kamchatka, Izu, Italy and Mexico), and continental settings (China and Nevada); and the application of radiogenic isotope systems to meteorite impact studies (Serpent Mound, Ohio) and environmental contaminant tracing (SW Ohio and Nevada).

Possible thesis/dissertation topics:

  • Sr isotope and U-series disequilibria studies of magmatic processes and timescales in active silicic volcanic systems (Azores, Canary Islands, Japan, Mexico, Nevada).
  • Re-Os isotope studies of mantle heterogeneity and crustal recycling in island arc and ocean island settings (Mexico, Azores).
  • U and Pb isotopic studies of environmental contamination (Ohio and Nevada).

Current/recent graduate student research:

  • Elise Conte (Ph.D. in progress) Petrogenesis of Sete Cidades volcano, Azores: a U-series disequilibria study.
  • George Daly (Ph.D. in progress) Petrogenetic processes and timescales in Terceira, Azores and Dominica, Lesser Antilles: constraints from U-series disequilibria and Sr isotope microanalysis.
  • Fara Rasoazanamparany (Ph.D. in progress) Re-Os isotope systematics in Jorullo volcano, Mexico and the Lunar Crater Volcanic Field, NV..
  • Rebecca Tortorello (M.S. 2012) Application of Uranium Isotopes as a Temporal and Spatial Tracer of Nuclear Contamination int he Environment.
  • Shizuko Watanabe (Ph.D. 2010) Isotope and Trace Element Investigation of Magmatic Processes and Timescales in the Azores.
  • Huimin Yu (Ph.D. 2011) Li, Hf and Os Isotope Systematics of Azores Basalts and A New Microwave Digestion Method for Os Isotopic Analysis.

Selected publications:

Tortorello, R., Widom, E., and Renwick, W.H. (2013) Use of uranium isotopes as a temporal and spatial tracer of nuclear contamination in the environment. Journal of Environmental Radioactivity 124, 287-300.

LeGalley, E., Widom, E., Krekeler, M.P.S. and Kuentz, D.C. (2012) Chemical and lead isotope constraints on sources of metal pollution in street sediment and lichens in southwest Ohio. Applied Geochemistry 32, 195-203.

Larrea, P., Franca, Z., Lago, M., Widom, E., Gale, C. and Ubide, T. (2012) Magmatic processes and the role of antecrysts in the genesis of Corvo island (Azores archipelago, Portugal). Journal of Petrology 54, 769-793.

Widom, E. (2011) Recognizing recycle osmium. Geology 39, 1087-1088.

Partey, F., Lev, S., Casey, R., Widom, E., Lueth, V., and Rakovan, J. (2009) Source of Fluorine and Petrogenesis of the Rio Grande Rift Type Barite-Fluorite-Galena Deposits. Economic Geology 104, 505-520.

Snyder, D.C., Widom, E., Pietruszka, A.J., Carlson, R.W. and Schmincke, H.-U. (2007) Time scales of formation of zoned magma chambers: U-series disequilibria in Fogo A and 1563 A.D. trachyte deposits, Sao Miguel, Azores. Chemical Geology, 239, 138-155 (see also erratum in Chemical Geology 243, 369).

Widom, E. (2006) Lost lithium found. Nature 443, 516-517.

Watanabe, S., Widom, E., Ui, T., Miyagi, N. and Roberts, A.M. (2005) The evolution of a chemically zoned magma chamber: the 1707 AD eruption of Fuji Volcano. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research 152, 1-19.

Selected grants:

  • National Science Foundation 2011 - 2014
    Acquisition of an Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectrometer for Geological and Environmental Applications.
  • National Science Foundation 2010 - 2014
    Identifying Crustal and Mantle Processes in the Central Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt
  • National Science Foundation 2010 - 2014
    Collaborative Research; Testing the links between magma source characteristics, shallow plumbing, and eruptive styles in mafic intraplate volcanic fields (Lunar Crater Volcanic Field, Nevada)..
  • National Science Foundation 2009 - 2013
    Constraining Processes and Timescales of Magma Evolution.

Teaching Interests:

GLG 111 - The Dynamic Earth
GLG 211 - Chemistry of Earth Systems
GLG 417/517 - Forensic Isotope Geochemistry
GLG 427/527 - Isotope Geochemistry
GLG 617 - Chemistry of Earth's Interior
GLG 627 - Applications of Non-Traditional Isotope Systems
GLG 670 - Geochemical Modeling
GLG 770 - Advanced Isotope Geochemistry

For complete descriptions of courses please click here.

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