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MARGINS Mini-lesson Collection


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Online Investigation of an Island Arc Volcano: Anatahan, Mariana Arc
This activity is a Web investigation and research exercise starting with the 2003-present Anatahan volcanic eruptions in the Mariana arc, and concluding with a petrologic examination of published Mariana arc lavas data sets.

Historical Earthquakes and Uplift/Subsidence of Sumatra from Coral Growth Rings -- Advanced Version
In this lab, students will use data from real corals collected in Sumatra to track the sea-level and earthquake record of the region over the past century.

A Geologic Safari of the East African Rift and the Newark Basin: Why these areas are more alike than you know
This activity explores the similarity and differences between the Newark Rift Basin and East African Rift.

Plate Tectonics as Expressed in Geological Landforms and Events
This activity seeks to have students analyze global data sets on earthquake and volcano distributions toward identifying major plate boundary types in different regions on the Earth. A secondary objective is to familiarize students with two publicly available resources for viewing and manipulating geologically-relevant geospatial data: Google Earth(TM) and GeoMapApp.

Physical and Chemical Variations Along the Central American Volcanic Arc
The Central American volcanic arc displays large arc-parallel variations in chemical composition that yield important clues concerning the complex origin of magmas in subduction zones. In this exercise, students use data compiled for the NSF MARGINS program to compare heights, volumes, and whole-rock compositions of 39 Quaternary volcanic centers along the Central American arc, together with crustal thicknesses, to assess the possible sources of the magmas and the petrologic processes that have modified them prior to eruption.

Serpentine Seamounts in the Mariana Forearc: Shallow Material Releases from Downgoing Plates
A set of maps, images and .kmz files for use in lectures and discussions on forearc serpentine volcanism in the Mariana subduction system.

How Slab Dip Affects the Location of Volcanoes
Students will plot the locations of earthquakes on the top of subducting slabs to determine slab dip and will then develop hypotheses regarding the relationship between slab dip, the depth of the slab, and volcanic activity on the surface.

Partitioning of thrust and strike/slip faulting in oblique subduction
Oblique subduction results in distinct sets of faults with either just thrust or mainly strike/slip motion and that back-arc thrust belts show little oblique strain compared to forearc areas.

Serpentinite in Subduction Zones: How do we find it, and how common is it?
A mineralogical, petrological, and geophysical exploration of the role of serpentinite in subduction zones, as highlighted in the two NSF-MARGINS Subduction Factory focus sites.

Sediment production and distribution across the margins
This activity is an exploration of the relationship among tectonics, sediment production, and sediment dispersal from watersheds to the continental margins. Students will examine data on a suite of watersheds and make measurements and observations in Google Earth or GeoMapApp.

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