Earth and Environmental Sciences Faculty

Ethan Baxter

Professor

Department Chair

Profile

I am a geochemist interested in the broad processes occurring within and between the Earth’s crust, mantle, and surface. An interest in unraveling the history of the Earth, as well as predicting certain aspects of its future, is at the heart of much of the research going on in my group. By studying the vast geological record, we interpret the chemistry of diverse Earth materials (rocks, minerals, sediments, and more) to elucidate the timescales, rates, and mechanisms of broad and interdependent geological processes such as tectonics, metamorphism, subduction, global geochemical cycles, lithosphere-hydrosphere-atmosphere interactions.  My research brings together approaches including isotope geochemistry, geochronology, field geology, petrology & mineralogy, thermodynamics, and numerical modeling. My research has taken my students and me to field areas including Austria, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Scotland, the Greek Isles, China, Ontario, California, and throughout New England.


CURRENT GRADUATE STUDENTS AND PROJECTS
  • Thomas Farrell: Dating tectonic evolution of the Iberian Peninsula using microstructures preserved in garnet
  • Anna Gerrits: Assessing redox change due to subduction zone dehydration using Fe-isotope and chemical zonation in garnet
RECENT M.S. ALUMNI AND PROJECTS
  • Jamie Kendall: Sm/Nd garnet geochronology and pressure-temperature paths of eclogites from Syros, Greece: Implications for subduction zone processes and water loss from the subducting slab (2016)
RECENT PUBLICATIONS ( * = Baxter student coauthor;  = TIMS Facility user/collaborator)
  • *Stewart, E.M., Baxter, E.F., Ague, J.J. (2017). Initiation and duration of Grampian orogenesis constrained by refined Sm–Nd garnet geochronology of the Ballantrae ophiolite, Scotland. Journal of the Geological Society, London. doi.org/10.1144/jgs2017-010
  • Baxter, E.F., Caddick, M.J., Dragovic, B. (2017). Garnet: A Rock Forming Mineral Petrochronometer. Reviews in Mineralogy & Geochemistry, 83, p. 469-533.
  • Schoene, B., and Baxter E.F. (2017). Petrochronology and TIMS. Reviews in Mineralogy & Geochemistry, 83, p. 231-260.
  • Collings, D.A., Savov, I., *Maniero, K., Baxter, E., Harvey, J., Dimitrov, I. (2016). Late Cretaceous UHP metamorphism recorded in kyanite-garnet schists from the Central Rhodope Mountains, Bulgaria. Lithos, 246-247, p. 165-181
  • *Dragovic, B., Baxter E.F., Caddick,M.J. 2015. Pulsed garnet growth and dehydration at blueschist facies conditions, Sifnos, Greece. Earth & Planetary Science Letters, 413, p.111-122.