2014 CIG Mantle Convection and Lithosphere Dynamics Workshop

Joint with the Canadian Geophysical Union and the Canadian Society of Soil Science

This workshop is the first joint meeting with the Canadian Geophysical Union (CGU) and the 5th CIG sponsored workshop intended to bring together researchers who study the dynamics of the Earth’s mantle and lithosphere through numerical modeling. This workshop follows the meetings in Boulder, Colorado (2005), UC Davis (2008), UC San Diego (2010) and UC Davis (2012). The meeting will focus on numerical modeling, mantle dynamics and the geodynamics of lithospheric evolution and will combine invited and conributed talks and poster sessions. An introductory tutorial on ASPECT will also be offered. 

Participants can attend and submit abstracts to any of CGU, CSSS or CIG sessions.

See Logistics for more information on registration, travel and accomodations.

Organizing Committee

   Julian Lowman, Chair, University of Toronto
   Claire Currie, University of Alberta
   Lorraine Hwang, University of California, Davis
   Louise Kellogg, University of California, Davis
   Allen McNamara, Arizona State University
   Dave May, ETH


Monday: Advancing the state of the art in computational modeling of mantle and lithosphere dynamics (keynote speakers: Louis Moresi, Tobias Keller, Margarete Jadamec, Timo Heister)

Tuesday: New insights from mantle convection modeling: Exploring mantle dynamics from the lithosphere to the base of the mantle (keynote speakers: Ulrich Hansen, Scott King, Shijie Zhong, Abigail Aller)

Wednesday: Geodynamics of lithosphere evolution: Numerical models and observational constraints (keynote speakers: Laetitia Le Pourhiet, Jared Butler, Lucy Flesch, Roger Buck

Complete Workshop Agenda.

CIG Session Descriptions

CM: Advancing the state of the art in computational modeling of mantle and lithosphere dynamics

The use of numerical modeling to understand geological processes has a long and rich history in the Earth sciences. Through continual exposure, education and the ever increasing availability of large scale computer resources, the computational geodynamic community continues to develop at an ever increasing rate. This session highlights computational advances in all areas related to numerical modeling the dynamics of the lithosphere, mantle and fluid/melt transport. We seek contributions from all aspects of geodynamic computations including: accurate, robust multiscale discretizations; development of efficient, scalable solvers; utilization of next generation hardware; efficient and flexible implementations for the community; data assimilation with uncertainty quantification and techniques for three-dimensional visualization of big data.

MC: New insights from mantle convection modeling:  Exploring mantle dynamics from the lithosphere to the base of the mantle

Modeling of mantle convection remains a powerful tool to explore the dynamics of Earth’s interior. Moreover, examining distinct convective processes in the mantles of other terrestrial planets, both within and beyond the solar system, has gained increasingly greater attention.  This session is intentionally broad in scope, and it aims to cover the full range of new scientific advances obtained through geodynamical modeling, from either numerical or laboratory experiments. We welcome contributions from all areas of mantle convection modeling, covering all regions from the lithosphere to the bottom of the mantle.

LE: Geodynamics of lithosphere evolution:  Numerical models and observational constraints

Numerical modeling has become an important tool for investigating lithosphere dynamics over geological timescales (104-109 years) and for aiding in the interpretation of geophysical and geological observations of lithosphere structure.  Advanced models include coupled thermal-mechanical calculations, non-linear rheologies and deformation at a range of spatial scales.  Many challenges remain, such as the need to model processes at higher resolution and incorporate surface processes and multiphysics (e.g., two-phase flow).  In addition, the relationship between numerical model predictions and observational data is often complex.  This session will address the advances and challenges in understanding lithosphere structure and evolution.  We welcome contributions that examine lithosphere dynamics from plate margins to plate interiors, as well as studies that explore linkages between lithosphere dynamics, surface erosion/sedimentation, and mantle convection.

Abstract Submission

Participants may submit abstracts to the CGU and the CIG meetings.  CGU abstract submission deadline is February 28. Please see the CGU website for more details.

*** Abstract Submission Closed ***

For CIG Sessions, please use the Abstract Template. Abstract should be submitted by March 28, 2014 to Please use the following filename convention when submitting your abstract: [session ID][lastname][opttxtstring]. Session ID is either CM, MC, or LE.

Late abstracts may not be listed in the official meeting program. 

Please check back for a full listing of accepted abstracts.


All posters should be posted before the general poster session on Monday May 5 @ 3:30pm.  Please check event staff for the location  reserved for the CIG poster sessions. Boards will be available on a first-come first-serve basis.

Posterboard size: 7'9" x 4'.

See Presenter Guidelines for more information and helpful tips.


Registration is through CGU.  Please see the main conference website and Logistics. We STRONGLY recommend that everyone join CGU for the best rates.

Travel Support

We expect to be able to support up to 60 participants providing up to $1200 USD  for registration, airfare and accommodation to participants from U.S. Instiutions. Higher priority of funding will go to graduate students, postdocs and early career scientists. We recommend that participants book their air travel early. Travelers MUST use a US carrier or provide code share information.

Apply for travel support. Participants will be notified by March 28, 2014. Closed.


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