CREEP host institution: Institut für Geophysik, Münster, Germany
Background: I received my bachelor in Geology at University of Bari (Italy), with specialization in mineralogy and petrography, and I earned a M.Sc. degree in Geophysics at the same Institution. During my Master Thesis, I focused my attention on seismic waves scattering and attenuation phenomena in complex media applied to the deformed continental crust of the fold and thrust belt in northern Apennines, Italy (Pisconti et al., 2015, GJI, doi:10.1093/gji/ggv055).
CREEP project: In my PhD project (ESR11) within CREEP, I use seismology for probing anisotropy and structure of the lowermost mantle, the so-called D’’ region. This region seems to have a key role in the Earth dynamic and mantle convection, being the place where global tomographic image found lithospheric slab graveyards and deep plumes birthplace. The recently discovered phase transition, across the D’’ seismic discontinuity, from perovskite (pv) to post-perovskite (ppv), seems to explain both complex seismic anisotropy and reflectivity pattern in D’’ (Thomas et al., 2011, EPSL). Using different cross wave paths for a given region, the azimuthal variation in seismic waves properties sampling the D’’ will be modelled using recent mineral physics results on slip systems, crystal preferred orientation and anisotropy in pv-ppv. Since anisotropy is generated and controlled by deformation, I expect to better constrain rheology and mantle flow patterns at the bottom of the mantle.
Supervisors: Prof. Dr. Christine Thomas1, Dr. James Wookey2, Prof. David Mainprice3, Prof. Hanneke Paulssen4.
1 Institut für Geophysik, Münster, Germany
2 School of Earth Science, Bristol, UK
3 Geosciences Montpellier, France
3 Department of Earth Science, Utrecht, Netherlands