Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions
Disciplinary sessions AS–GM
Disciplinary sessions GMPV–TS

Session programme


TS – Tectonics & Structural Geology

Programme group chair: Claudio Rosenberg

TS9 – Tectonics and surface processes

Programme group scientific officer: Lucilla Benedetti


The consideration of entire “Source to Sink" systems is one of the most recent and challenging advance in earth surface dynamics and sedimentary geology. To understand S2S systems it is necessary to promote and enhance sharing of knowledge and concepts between previously separated disciplines that are involved in the analysis of S2S systems. In particular, studying S2S systems implies knowledge and skills from (1) geomorphology, which focuses on the understanding of erosion processes driving landform evolution and sediment fluxes, (2) stratigraphy/sedimentology, which focuses on the nature of sedimentary deposits and their distribution in time and space, and (3) tectonics and structural geology, which set the dimensions, geometry and dynamics of source/transfer areas and sedimentary basins (the sink). Understanding S2S systems also involves other Geosciences disciplines such as paleoclimatology and geochemistry, because they allow quantifying the factors controlling S2S systems dynamics (climatic controls on erosion, solid vs solute fluxes, etc.). The sedimentary record captures Earth’s environmental evolution through interactions with humans. Developing innovative strategies for shaping a sustainable future and responsible growth requires a holistic understanding of Earth’s resources and our impact on the environment that can be informed by the sedimentary archives.
The aim of this general session is to invite contributions from all S2S-related research fields in order to foster connections around a central theme and kickstart the emergence of a European S2S research community. In addition, we propose to use this session to initiate discussion on developing a strategy for S2S training of early-stage researchers to enable them to address the sedimentary system from source to sink and inform them of potential career opportunities in both the academic and non-academic sectors. We welcome all S2S-related and environmental signal propagation contributions, and in particular those addressing 1) perennial S2S dynamics in response to long-term tectonic and climatic signals in deep time, 2) transient S2S dynamics in response to short-term signals and extreme events, 3) generic S2S models inspired by nature, 4) relationships and feedbacks between human and S2S systems, 5) global to regional scale source-to-sink systems and the economic benefits of thinking in this mindset, and 6) innovative S2S training in academia and industry.

Co-organized by GM4/SSP3, co-sponsored by IAS
Convener: Francois Guillocheau | Co-conveners: Jean Braun, Charlotte FillonECSECS, Benjamin Gréselle, Tor Somme
| Attendance Fri, 08 May, 08:30–10:15 (CEST)

Active tectonics and volcano-tectonic processes are related to earthquakes, fracturing, fault motion (such as creeping), volcanic eruptions, caldera or flank collapse and magmatic intrusions, such as dyking. Satellite data using optical or thermal sensors provide first order information about faulting and volcanic activity, however, there is a resolution gap below the meter-scale, critical to detect and analyse small structures over broad areas and to better assess how faults, magma intrusions and collapses nucleate and evolve. During large deformations (earthquakes, dyke intrusions, collapses), the near-field area where satellite radar signal (InSAR) becomes incoherent remains poorly studied. In addition, classical field surveys and data collection are, very often, not feasible due to difficult logistic condition, hazardous accesses and/or inaccessible areas. Therefore, there is a need to collect higher resolution data to better understand faulting and volcanic processes at scales from cm to several meters, that complement classical field studies and satellite data. The scientific community has adopted modern direct and indirect methods to develop in the last decade, like the Structure from Motion (SfM) techniques.
SfM techniques have been applied using imagery acquired from field and aerial survey, using cameras and mobile phones, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs, i.e. drones), balloons, airplanes and helicopters. This technique produces digital surface models (DSM), ortho-mosaic imagery, dense point clouds and 3D models, creating a high-resolution environment reconstruction for a single outcrop or a wide area. The session will focus on the application of the SfM techniques for research in the field of structural geology, with particular regard to active tectonics and volcano-tectonic processes. The session covers, without being limited to, the following topics: i) case studies where the SfM has been employed; ii) SfM methods, 3D reconstruction and successive analysis; iii) innovative application for SfM for survey, such as ground deformation analysis; iv) integration and comparison of SfM-derived, field and satellite data; v) new tools and methods for data analysis on SfM-derived models; and vi) future works and applications of SfM techniques.

Co-organized by GMPV9
Convener: Fabio Luca BonaliECSECS | Co-conveners: Fabio MarcheseECSECS, Joël Ruch, Daniele TrippaneraECSECS, Malcolm Whitworth
| Attendance Thu, 07 May, 08:30–10:15 (CEST)

The Arabian Plate recorded several plate reorganizations from the Neoproterozoic to present, including the Angudan Orogeny, Late Paleozoic rifting and Alpine Orogeny. Active tectonics are framing the Arabian Plate and produce a variety of structures including extensional structures related to rifting of the Red Sea and Gulf and Aden, strike-slip structures at the Dead Sea and Owen transform faults and compressive structures related to the Zagros-Makran collision zone. The Arabian Peninsula contains the planet’s largest hydrocarbon reservoirs owing to its geological history as passive margin of Gondwana during the Permo-Mesozoic. Moreover, the Semail Ophiolite as largest exposed ophiolite on Earth offers a unique example of large scale obductions and overthrusted sedimentary basins. This and the spectacular outcrop conditions make the Arabian Peninsula an important and versatile study area. Ongoing research and new methods shed new light on, e.g., mountain building processes and its geomorphological expression as well as hydrocarbon development/migration.

We invite contributions that utilize structural, geophysical, tectonically, geochronological, geomorphological, sedimentary, geochemical/mineralogical, and field geological studies from the Arabian Peninsula and surrounding mountain belts and basins. These studies may include topics dealing with structures/basin analyses of any scale and from all tectonic settings ranging from the Neoproterozoic until today.

Convener: Frank Mattern | Co-conveners: Christopher Bailey, Ivan Callegari, Andreas Scharf
| Attendance Thu, 07 May, 10:45–12:30 (CEST)

The coupling between tectonics, climate and surface processes governs the dynamics of mountain belts and basins. First order constraints on this coupling are provided by geomorphic and sedimentary records, including longitudinal river profiles, fluvial terraces, downstream fining trends, growth strata, sediment provenance, sequence stratigraphy, and changing depositional environments. Moreover, the increasing integration of geochronological methods for quantifying erosion rates and source-to-sink sediment transfer with landscape evolution, stratigraphic, climatic, and tectonic models allows to advance our understanding of the interactions between surface processes, climate and tectonic deformation.

We invite contributions that use geomorphic and/or sedimentary records to understand tectonic deformation, climate histories, and surface processes, and welcome studies that address their interactions and couplings at a range of spatial and temporal scales. In particular, we encourage coupled catchment-basin studies that take advantage of numerical/physical modelling, geochemical tools for quantifying rates of surface processes (cosmogenic nuclides, low-temperature thermochronology, luminescence dating) and high resolution digital topographic and subsurface data. We also encourage field or subsurface structural and geomorphic studies of landscape evolution, sedimentary patterns and provenance in deformed settings, and invite contributions that address the role of surface processes in modulating rates of deformation and tectonic style, or of tectonics modulating the response of landscapes to climate change.

Co-organized by TS9
Convener: Dirk Scherler | Co-conveners: Anneleen Geurts, Duna Roda-BoludaECSECS, Alex Whittaker
| Attendance Tue, 05 May, 10:45–12:30 (CEST), Attendance Tue, 05 May, 14:00–15:45 (CEST)