Assistant/Associate Specialist in Volcanology and Tectonics

University of California Davis Mathematical and Physical Sciences

United States

Assistant/Associate Specialist in Volcanology and Tectonics

Job #JPF04053
  • EARTH AND PLANETARY SCIENCES / Mathematical and Physical Sciences / UC Davis

Recruitment Period

Open date: March 11th, 2021

Next review date: Thursday, Apr 1, 2021 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee.

Final date: Friday, Apr 30, 2021 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.

Position description

Assistant/Associate Specialist in Volcanology and Tectonics- 80.0% FTE

The primary responsibility of the Specialist will be making new, detailed geologic maps of volcanic rocks and intrusions, and associated faults, in the eastern Sierra Nevada-Walker Lane belt of eastern California and western Nevada, supported by lab data, and preparing a journal article on the results. The field area lies 2-3 hours from Davis by car, so all three aspects of the work can overlap in time; this is ideal for field-based geologic research.

A. Field Work (25%)
Geologic maps will be made using aerial photography, oblique aerial photos, satellite images and topographic maps. All data points, including samples and all field observations, will be located in the field using GPS. The GPS data will be backed up to a field laptop every night, along with typing in associated field observations and sample descriptions. These data will in turn be backed up nightly to an external hard drive to carry in the field, in case the laptop is stolen from the field vehicle. Many traverses will require being away from the vehicle all day. A field assistant will be provided for safety.

B. Lab Work (50%)
The mapping will be supported by petrographic and geochemical data collected and analyzed on a suite of GPS-located rock samples, as well as 40 Ar/39Ar geochronological data. Thin sections will be made by the lab in-house, and the Associate Specialist will collect and tabulate petrographic data, and take photomicrographs annotate them. Whole rock major element geochemistry will be done by the Associate Specialist at collaborator Professor Putirka’s lab (CSU Fresno), and sent to an outside lab for trace elements. The Associate Specialist will also participate in collecting and interpreting mineral chemistry data, using the in-house electron microprobe. The Associate Specialist will carry out mineral separations for the geochronology and may participate in the collection of the age data at UNAM Juraquilla (Mexico). The Associate Specialist will also participate in interpreting isotopic analyses, which will be carried out on his samples by an outside lab.

Data Management (25%)
Data management will include compilation of geologic map data in ArcGIS for manipulation and for publication (these files are normally published in supplementary information). This will be brought into Adobe Illustrator for lecture presentations and journal article illustrations. Tasks will also include compilation of lab data tables and construction of geochemical and petrographic plots for publication. Field photos and photomicrographs will be annotated, and conceptual drawings will be drafted. Each component of the field and lab work will be written up as soon as it is completed. The final result will be a journal article.

The primary worksite location is the Earth and Physical Sciences Building. Dr. Busby will be the supervisor, and the Associate Specialist will interact broadly with the larger tectonics, volcanology and geochemistry groups in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences.

More Info:

Application Requirements

Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter (Optional)
  • Statement of Research (Optional)
  • Statement of Teaching (Optional)
  • Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion - Contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion documented in the application file will be used to evaluate applicants. Visit for guidelines about writing a statement and why one is requested.
Reference requirements
  • 3 required (contact information only)

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