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USGS Scientists to "Dish The Dirt" on Mars; Describe Ancient Impact Crater in Nevada; and Simulate The "Greenhouse Effect" at Salt Lake City Meeting
Released: 10/17/1997

Contact Information:
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
Office of Communication
119 National Center
Reston, VA 20192
Pat Jorgenson 1-click interview
Phone: 650-329-4000 | FAX: 650-329-4013

What the rover really saw on Mars, the effects of an asteroid impact in southern Nevada 370 million years ago, and how climate change will affect society and the environment are a sample of the earth-science topics that will be presented by scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey during a national science meeting in Salt Lake City next week.

More than 100 USGS scientists will join an estimated 4,000 earth scientists from around the nation at the Salt Palace Convention Center in downtown Salt Lake City for the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America (GSA), Oct. 19-23.

The meeting will get underway Sunday, Oct. 19, with several sessions devoted to the theme of this year’s meeting, "Global Connections."

In subsequent sessions, Monday through Thursday, USGS scientists will present the following: What Sojourner Saw -- The images that the Mars rover, Sojourner, sent back from Mars show rocks and sand that resemble those in Utah, according to Henry Moore, of the USGS astrogeology team in Menlo Park, Calif. Moore will review the Mars Pathfinder images and what they tell us about the Red Planet at 4 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 21, in Room 255 of the Convention Center.

"Remember the Alamo?" Not the one in Texas, but the "Alamo" impact crater that was created in what is southern Nevada, about 370 million years ago when a comet slammed into the ancestral Pacific Ocean, which covered the area at the time. The splash that was created will be described by Charles A. Sandberg, geologist emeritus of the USGS in Denver, Colo. Sandberg will present his findings at 10:30 a.m., Monday, Oct. 20, in Room 250 of the Convention Center.

The "Really Big" Impact, "Chicxulub," — which is believed to have caused extinction of the dinosaurs, will be demonstrated in a computer animation created by Tau Rho Alpha, of the USGS in Menlo Park, Calif. Alpha will demonstrate his newest science-education animation at 9:45 a.m., Tuesday, Oct. 21, in Room 150 of the Convention Center.

Lanslide Prone Areas — throughout the United States are easy to locate on the USGS’s new "Landslide Incidence and Susceptibility Map" that will be featured at a poster session from 8 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, Oct. 22, in Hall C, Booth 69. Debris Flows — in areas along the Pacific Coast will be described by Raymond Wilson and Mark Reid of the USGS in Menlo Park, Calif., in a session on the hydrogeology of landslides. The session begins at 8 a.m., Monday, Oct. 20, in Room 259 of the Convention Center.

Society Heats Up Over Global Change — The potential regional scale impacts of climate change will be demonstrated by Robert Thompson, of the USGS in Denver, Colo, with a spatial-resolution model, Wednesday, oct. 22, at 10:30 a.m., in Room 151 of the Convention Center.

The Humboldt River - one of the longest "internally drained" rivers in the United States, plays an important role in the ecosystem of northern Nevada. Just how important will be explained by David Ponce of the USGS in Menlo Park, Calif., in a poster session from 8 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, Oct. 22, in Hall C, Booth 94.

Editors: Interviews with these GSA presenters may be arranged during the convention by calling the GSA news room at 801-364-6140; or post-convention, by calling the USGS Outreach Office in Denver, Colo., 303-236-5900; or Menlo Park, Calif., 415-329-4000.

The USGS serves the nation by providing reliable scientific information to describe and understand the Earth; minimize loss of life and property from natural disasters; manage water, biological, energy, and mineral resources; and enhance and protect our quality of life.

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