What’s better than doing science? Doing science outside!
Fieldwork is my passion, and I use it to answer fundamental questions about how active faults work. And whether deploying seismic instruments, mapping fault damage zones, or collecting samples for lab analyses, there is always room for contribution from all levels of student from high school to full professor.
My active research areas include the Denali fault in Alaska, the San Jacinto fault in California, and the Wasatch fault right here in my backyard (almost literally: the mapped trace of the Wasatch fault is 80 meters from my front door). I am also commonly scouring Utah’s mountain ranges for precariously balanced rocks, which act as paleoseismometers to tell us about ancient earthquakes that occurred before written records. These trips virtually always involve student assistants.
If you’re interested in stretching your legs while doing science, check out my Precariously Balanced Rock (PBR) page; your help is invaluable!
Graduate student Elizabeth Berg retrieves a seismometer from on top of a lateral moraine near the Denali fault, Alaska.
Graduate student Yadong Wang secures a 125lb sled full of seismometers during fieldwork in Alaska.
Graduate student Yadong Wang hauls a sled full of seismometers to the top of a terminal moraine along the Denali fault, Alaska.
Undergraduate Nick Lock stands guard for bears while Amir Allam deploys a seismometer near the Denali fault, Alaska.
Undergraduate Sam Clairmont searching for precariously balanced rocks above Causey Reservoir, Utah.
Undergraduates Sam Clairmont and Jake Reitman swim across the East Canyon Reservoir during fieldwork in the Wasatch Mountains, Utah.
Undergraduate Sam Clairmont takes photographs to build a 3D model of a precariously balanced rock near Morgan, Utah.
Visiting undergraduate Quentin Hirsch taking photos to build 3D models of a precariously balanced rock near Echo, Utah.
Cole Richards measuring fracture density in samples from the Wasatch Fault zone, Utah.
Undergraduates Sam Clairmont and Cole Richards make some new friends during fieldwork in the Oquirrh Mountains, Utah.
Undergraduates Austin McKell, Jan Mees, Alysha Armstrong, and Josh Freigenberg pointing out a precariously balanced rock near St. George, Utah.
Undergraduate Jan Mees looking for precariously balanced rocks near St. George.
Amateur enthusiast Valkyrie Allabush helps offload seismometers.
Amir Allam and Austin McKell look at offset strata in a paleoseismological trench along the San Jacinto Fault Zone.
Graduate Student Guanning Pang installs a seismometer with Amir Allam near the San Jacinto fault zone.
A seismometer had a close call with a thresher in Southern California.
A tired field team at the end of a long day on the San Jacinto Fault. (Austin McKell, Alysha Armstrong, Josh Freigenberg, Jan Mees)
Students Austin McKell and Michaela Lemen enjoy the results of typically poor Professorial driving skills of Amir Allam after a mild mishap near Hemet, CA.
USC grad student Cooper Harris standing in front of the San Jacinto Fault Zone. The Hemet stepover is clearly visible in the background.
USC graduat student Rob Zinke just standing around.
Amir Allam and undergrads Michaela Lemen and Austin McKell looking serious in front of a smashed field vehicle window.
Yellowstone National Park
Graduate Student Elizabeth Berg acquiring accurate GPS locations during an active-source seismic experiment near Old Faithful, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.
A lonely boardwalk near Old Faithful.
Professors Amir Allam and Jamie Farrell enjoy the scenery with students Elizabeth Berg and Yadong Wang.