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Open challenges in continental tectonics: a computational modelling approach

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Date: Monday 10 April 2017
Venue: EN201, Hawthorn Campus

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All are welcome at our upcoming Applied Mathematics Seminar featuring Dr Fabio A. Capitanio, ARC DECRA Fellow and Senior Lecturer, School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment, Monash University.


The causes of deformation in continent interiors are still an open challenge to the community of Earth scientists, yet crucially important to understand the evolution of the Earth’s surface and the hazard associated with its inhabited shell. This is a timely moment to take a look again at many issues which might have grown dogmatic with time, and probe them against the current understanding of deep mantle flow and surface deformation.

New aspects of tectonic interactions on Earth are elucidated through a modern understanding of subduction dynamics, mantle circulation and plate tectonics supported by a range of computational modelling approaches. These latter range from fluid-dynamics and solid mechanics and embed processes occurring a very diverse scales, from crystal grains to the whole planet, yet interconnected.

I will show some examples, such as the Asian continental tectonics, where unsolved problems span from the build-up of Tibetan Plateau and the current seismicity in the continent interiors, and show how computational modelling can provide some relevant insights.

About the speaker

Dr Fabio A. Capitanio is an Earth scientist with interests in plate tectonics, i.e.the interactions between the solid Earth’s interiors and its outermost shell. His research uses geological and geophysical observations and computational physics to yield insights into how the planet’s surface is shaped, from mountain chains to oceanic basins, and assists the exploration of hosted resources and the mitigation of seismic risk. Dr. Capitanio holds an MSc from Roma Tre Univesity and a PhD from ETH Zürich and is ARC Discovery Early Career Fellow and Senior Lecturer at the School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.

All welcome.

Contact Information: Dr Federico Frascoli