My primary research interests are focused on the composition, dynamics and evolution of the Earth’s and planetary mantle(s). Magma-ocean crystallization processes set up the initial conditions for mantle convection. Density and viscosity variations as a function of temperature, major-element (e.g., Mg/Si ratio) and minor-element (e.g. volatiles) composition, as well as mineralogy (e.g., grain-size, fabric) control the evolution of the mantle through time, and to the present day. The modern mantle is sampled by geophysical data and mantle-sourced volcanism. Geological and geochemical data provide indirect insight into past mantle processes and dynamics.
I am interested to integrate the available geophysical, geochemical and geological data through the tool of numerical modeling in order to understand mantle evolution. I explore simplified models, grounded by mineral-physics constraints, and compare robust model predictions with observations. The study of other terrestrial planets provides key insight into planetary accretion and differentiation. Earth interior dynamics have sustained a life-friendly surface climate for billions of years, and I am interested to understand the relevant processes and initial conditions for such a sustainable evolution.