Long-runout landslides, though uncommon on Earth, are prevalent throughout the solar system and well-preserved on Mars due to low rates of erosion. Although mineral composition, specifically presence of clay minerals, has been found to be an important predictor variable in susceptibility models of highly mobile terrestrial landslides (Lee and Min, 2001; Van Den Eeckhaut et al., 2006; Yalcin, 2007), most studies of Martian landslides have not directly considered composition (Watkins et al., 2020).
St. Lawrence University is located in a geologically unique location close to the boundary of the Adirondack highlands and lowlands. In these waterways, insoluble elements systematically decrease downriver from the Adirondacks to the St. Lawrence Lowlands, while the water pH increases. Freshwater bivalves are threatened because of degradation of their habitats due to human activities. Anthropogenically induced changes in pH like for example due to acid rain are among the factors imperiling these organisms.
Changes in river discharge have been measured throughout the last century by the U.S. Geological Survey, with data recorded as far back as 1889. The USGS Streamgaging Network provides data related to river flow and chemical and physical parameters, in almost real time. Through the USGS database it is possible to observe long-term trends in discharge rates over a period of time when global population, the use of resources, and a myriad of environmental changes have accelerated. During this project I chose to focus on the Arkansas River and its tributaries.
Coarse-woody debris (CWD) is a basic part of the forest-floor ecosystem and provides stabilization for topsoil and a habitat for various animals and fungi. Understanding differences in CWD across select Adirondack (ADK) lake basins may provide insight into forest dynamics and palaeoclimate work. As an extension of previous works by Freimuth et al. (2020), we selected four basins from their work to evaluate CWD within their catchments: Debar Pond (DP), Moose Pond (MP), Heart Lake (HL), and East Pine Pond (EPP).
This project involves writing a grant proposal for research that will be a component of a NASA Future Investigators in Earth and Space Science and Technology (FINESST) project called “Compositional and Thermophysical Controls on Martian Mass Movements,” by Helen Eifert '18.