Tephra 2014 - Maximizing the potential of tephra for multidisciplinary science

By Steven Kuehn1, Solene Pouget2, Marcus I Bursik2

1. Concord University 2. University at Buffalo, SUNY (UB)

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Tephra deposits are used by diverse communities: volcanologists, petrologists, tephrochronologists, paleoclimatologists, paleoecologists and archaeologists. To perhaps be too reductionist, volcanologists are generally interested in tephra to understand eruption behavior, frequency, and hazards; petrologists to understand magmatic processes beneath volcanoes and linkages to tectonic environments; tephrochronologists to make available age, distribution and geochemical characteristics; paleoclimatologists and paleoecologists to understand ice core, lake sediment and marine sediment chronostratigraphy and also volcanic impacts on past climates and ecosystems, and finally archaeologists to date cultural stratigraphic layers. These diverse groups therefore each need a tephra to "tell" them something quite different from the other groups. The result is that numerous researchers can have looked at the same tephra at numerous localities in very different ways and not realize or emphasize that they have investigated the same deposit. The ultimate aims of the tephra workshop are therefore to gain a better understanding of tephra layers, the eruptions that produced them, and their implications for early human history and the earth's climate; and to increase collaboration and data sharing among these scientific communities.

This process of intercommunity communication involves understanding different analysis and correlation techniques, which is not easily done. The different approaches and terminologies used by the various communities reduces the possibility and ease of collaboration, and increases the variability/error within the data. To help spur communication, and hence improve information on tephra layers, their age, correlation and implications for human prehistory and climate, a workshop bringing together diverse communities is appropriate.

Please refer to the meeting website at: https://vhub.org/groups/tephra2014

Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  • Steven Kuehn; Solene Pouget; Marcus I Bursik (2014), "Tephra 2014 - Maximizing the potential of tephra for multidisciplinary science," https://vhub.org/resources/3283.

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Tephra 2014 Workshop

Tephra 2014 Workshop group image