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When Earth Attacks: Why an Old Planet Causes Volcanoes and Earthquakes

Date and Time

Monday, October 15, 2012
7:00 PM


  • DeVos Center » 122E - Loosemore Auditorium


When Earth attacks: recent large earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions remind us that the Earth is an active planet with shifting plates and moving continents. We will explore why the old Earth is still this active and how a comparison with other planets shows a possible benefit to slow moving tectonic plates.


Dr. Peter van Keken is a geophysicist at the University of Michigan who uses computational methods to study the causes and consequences of plate tectonics. He focuses on the long-term chemical and thermal evolution of the Earth, the dynamics of mantle plumes and the structure and evolution of subduction zones. The talk is co-sponsored by the GeoPRISM distinguished lecture series.

The lecture is free and open to everyone.


For more information or questions contact Steve Mattox at (616) 331-3734 or



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