The urban corridor lies within the Puget-Willamette lowland, a seismically active forearc basin overlying the Cascadia subduction zone. Current research is focused in the following areas:
We are documenting the location, arrangement, size, and history of crustal fault zones and intervening basins beneath the Puget Lowland and Northern Willamette Valley.
Lowland sedimentary basin deposits record a history of deformation and changing environments in the Lowlands. Deposits left during the last glacial maximum cover the Puget Lowland, and related glacial outburst floods inundated the Columbia and Willamette Valleys.
The lowland basins commonly contain important groundwater resources. In the Willamette basin of NW Oregon, the Miocene Columbia River Basalt is an important strain marker for late Cenozoic deformation and is also a significant ground water aquifer.
We are integrating crustal structure, seismicity, and deformation into a predictive tectonic model. We are also building uniform geospatial databases that are web-accessible and applicable to urban natural hazard and resource issues.
Research is nearing completion in the following areas:
5. Tyee Basin
The Tyee basin in the southern Oregon Coast Range is large, early Tertiary sedimentary basin with long recognized hydrocarbon potential. New mapping and resource evaluation in cooperation with the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries provides a clear picture of potential targets.
The largest historic crustal earthquake in Washington occurred in the North Cascades in 1872. Nearly completed geologic mapping of over 10,000 square miles of rugged terrain by Rowland Tabor and his colleagues provides new insight into its crustal structure and tectonics.
Geologic mapping resources for the peninsula and the Geologic Story of Olympic National Park are outlined in these pages.