The emplacement and petrogenesis of large-scale basaltic and silicic volcanics at large igneous provinces and their affects on Earth’s environment and climate. I focus on Miocene volcanism at the Columbia River-Snake River Plain-Yellowstone (USA) volcanic province, and the Permo-Triassic Siberian Traps (Russia) province. My current NERC funded research is investigating scales and frequencies of rhyolitic super-eruptions in the central Snake River Plain (~8-11 Ma). In my previous project I demonstrated a short duration of the Siberian Traps volcanism, ~250 Ma. The work doubled the known size of the vast province and strengthened the link between the volcanism and the largest known mass extinction. I am also part of a multidisciplinary international research team investigating the relationship between volcanic rocks of the Maymecha-Kotuy area and the wider basaltic Siberian Traps volcanism (http://siberia.mit.edu/)
Using radiometric dating techniques combined with paleomagnetic and geochemical analysis, I hope to better constrain the ages, extents and most importantly improve understanding of the frequencies and durations of very large eruptions. What led to the generation of these provinces, and what role did rhyolitic and basaltic explosive eruptions have in impacting climate?