M.S. Graduate Thesis

USING AMS TO HELP DIFFERENTIATE BETWEEN GLACIOGENIC DEPOSITS OF THE LATE PALEOZOIC ICE AGE IN THE PARANÁ BASIN, BRAZIL 

Advisor(s): Dr John Isbell and Dr Julie Bowles of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Dept of Geosciences

There are many paleoenvironmental aspects of the Late Paleozoic Ice Age (LPIA) that are still unknown, including whether or not Gondwana was covered by one large ice sheet or if multiple smaller ice caps were spread across the supercontinent. In general, the occurrence of diamictites within the Gondwana succession has been traditionally used to indicate the occurrence of subglacial deposition despite the potential occurrence of other depositional modes. The ability to better differentiate between subglacial from glacial marine processes (e.g., subaqueous resedimented gravity flows, and rainout resulting from ice rafting) in addition to determining glacier flow or mass transport directions, will allow scientists to more accurately reconstruct and interpret diamictite deposits of the LPIA. One area of interest in Gondwana where these types of deposits are known to occur is in the Paraná Basin, Brazil.

In sedimentary fabrics, anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility (AMS) has been used to determine the preferred orientation of the constituent grains to differentiate between modes of deposition (suspension, current, mass transport, lodgment), and to determine paleocurrent orientations. My research aim is to better understand if AMS can be used to delineate glaciogenic deposits of the LPIA


TALKS & POSTERS PRESENTED

  • AMATO, James (1), 2016. FOREST FIRE RISK ASSESSMENT OF THE ANGELES AND SAN BERNARDINO NATIONAL FORESTS, CALIFORNIAUniversity of Wisconsin Research Symposium. Milwaukee, WI. April 2017.
(1Dept. of Geosciences, UW-Milwaukee, 3209 N. Maryland Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53211
 
  • AMATO, James (1), AL-CHOKHACHY, Robert (2), HOSTETLER, Steven (3), 2016. UNDERSTANDING VARIABILITY OF STREAM TEMPERATURE TO POTENTIAL CLIMATIC DRIVERS IN HEADWATER ECOSYSTEMS: A NEED FOR SALMONOID CONSERVATIONAGU's Virtual Poster Showcase. San Francisco, CA. December 2016. 
(1) USGS / NAGT Internship, 3209 N. Maryland Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53211, (2) U.S. Geological Survey, 2327 University Way, Suite 2, Bozeman, MT 59715, (3) U.S. Geological Survey, 104 CEOAS Administration Building, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon 97331
 
  • AMATO, James (1), HOOYER, Thomas (1), MCCRACKEN, Reba (2), IVERSON, Neal (2), and SCHOMACKER, Anders (3), 2014. PATTERNS OF GLACIER SLIDING ON DRUMLIN SURFACES, MULAJOKULL, ICELAND. GSA North-Central Section Meeting. Lincoln, NE. April 2014; National Conference Undergrad Research at University of Kentucky. Lexington, KY. April 2014; University of Wisconsin Undergraduate Research Symposium. Milwaukee, WI. April 2014. 
(1Dept. of Geosciences, UW-Milwaukee, 3209 N. Maryland Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53211, (2) Dept. of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences, Iowa State University, 253 Science I Hall, Ames, IA 50011, (3) Department of Geology, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Sem Saelands Veg 1, Bergbygget, Trondheim, N-7491, Norway

RESEARCH AID GRANTS

  • 2016: University of Minnesota Institue of Rock Magnitism US Student Fellows
  • 2016: Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies Tinker Field Research Grant
  • 2016: Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies Travel Grant 
  • 2016: Society for Sedimentary Geology Student Assistance Research Grant
  • 2016: Wisconsin Geological Society Research Grant
  • 2014: UW-Milwaukee Dr. Robert E. Gernant Summer Field Work Scholarship
  • 2013: Geological Society of America ‘On to the Future’ Travel Grant
  • 2013: UW-Milwaukee Stipend for Undergraduate Research Fellows Award

USGS/NAGT Cooperative Field Training Program

Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center
Bozeman, Montana: June - August 2016
Supervisor(s): Dr. Robert Al-Chokhachy, Dr. Adam Sepulveda

Established in 1965, the USGS/NAGT Cooperative Summer Field Training Program is one of the longest continuing science internship programs in the country, with many participants proceeding on to distinguished careers with the USGS, with academia, and with industry. Because of James' exemplary performance at field camp, he was nominated by his field camp director to participate in the program.

In 2016, James was selected to assist Dr. Robert Al-Chokhachy and Dr. Adam Sepulveda from the Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center on their ecology research projects in the Greater Yellowstone area. The projects entailed sampling for fish and amphibian distributions, in addition to deploying instrumentation to collect stream discharge and temperature information. The summer internship was a valuable experience for James, allowing him to gain a better understanding of what it's like conducting research for a federal agency, and the opportunity to develop a broader perspective for the field of biology.


FIELD CAMP

University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh Geology Field Camp
Park City, Utah: June - July 2015
Instructor(s): Dr Tim Paulsen, Tom Suszek

Field camp is a tradition in the education of a geologist. It is an intensive six week summer course that applies classroom and laboratory training to solving geological problems in the field. The UW-Oshkosh Geology Field Camp is designed to expose students to a wide variety of rock types and geologic settings. Projects were conducted in the Wasatch Mountains, among other parts of Utah and Nevada examining various aspects of the contractional and extensional tectonic history of the North American Cordillera. Field areas included intrusive rocks, deformed sedimentary rocks, contact and regionally metamorphosed rocks, and Quaternary landscapes and deposits. Projects involved geologic mapping, rock descriptions, cross-section construction, stratigraphic section measurement, stereonet analyses, and interpretations of geologic histories.


FIELD ASSISTANT - ICELAND

UW-Milwaukee - Department of Geosciences
Iceland: July - August 2013
Advisor: Dr Thomas Hooyer

In 2013, James participated in two Iceland-­based research projects as a student worker. He assisted Dr. Neal Iverson (Iowa State University) and Dr. Thomas Hooyer (UW-Milwaukee) collecting AMS samples for their drumlin formation research project at Múlajökull; an outlet glacier located in the Central Highlands. After, James assisted Bill Jacobson, a Ph.D. student at UW-Milwaukee, in collecting cores for his basal-ice research project at Flàajökull; an outlet glacier located in the Southeast. Participating in these projects was a valuable experience for James, allowing him to develop his skills of collecting data in the field and analyzing it in the lab. James went on to conduct his own undergraduate research project, investigating the direction of ice flow on drumlin surfaces.