Sunday, July 13, 2008

Getting to know me- My thesis project

In Fall 2007, I was lucky enough to get an aerial view of my field area by hiking to the top of Lassen Peak. Keep in mind, I was on a geology field trip, where I only had two hours of free time to climb over 2,000ft and get back down. I was only 15 min. late and I can say I ran down Lassen Peak, down in about 35 min.

So my project is the Chaos Crags, located north of Lassen Peak. The crags consist of 6 rhyolitic domes that contain basaltic-andestic enclaves (which are blobs of a different type rock within the host rock). I will soon be spending many hours (that is, if the smoke from all of the fires clears) point counting these enclaves, looking for different types, size, etc. In the meantime, I am also taking digital pictures within thin-sections of these volcanic rocks and using a method called CSD distribution on plagioclase. I am old school, actually outlining plagioclase crystals within each picture using a lightbox and tracing paper, lets just say my hand and wrist hurts and I should buy stock in Sharpie pens. But I am not complaining because I can do this at home, whenever I feel like it, and it gets me more familiar with the rocks, only if my son was older, he could help me trace and color. I have tried using the computer, but I have to admit that I am not advanced enough to use a program like photoshop CS3 to outline just plagioclase crystals.

No comments: