GMEG - Mineral and Environmental Resources
Complex systems analysis of basin margins in southwestern North America project tasks
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Task 1: Models of the interaction of an ore deposit system with economic, social, and climatic change variables.
The objective of this task is to build complex systems models of a selected ore deposit system. Porphyry systems are the best candidate for evaluation of complex systems modeling of ore deposit utilization because they are well-studied and a large literature of data is available, porphyry systems are important in the local area (Southwest U.S.), and they offer an excellent opportunity for a collaborative project with University of Arizona Geosciences Department (Center for Mineral Resources) through the Porphyry Copper Deposit Life Cycles Project. Work will continue in three areas: fuzzy cognitive map theory development, software tools development, and literature compilation of historical data that can be used in model building and testing.
Task 2: Models of the geology and physical properties of basin marginal zones.
The objectives are :
- to map, in 3 dimensions, the boundary of the basin margin and bedrock and to examine the physical properties of the sediment fill and bedrock in the basin marginal zone;
- to develop methods to detect and map the water table in these basins, especially along the basin marginal zone;
- to develop new methods to visualize relationships and physical properties of basin fill, the water table, vertical permeable zones and their importance to water table recharge, and bedrock (its geometry, structure, and lithology) in the basin marginal zones; and
- to develop models of the physical properties of geologic materials and structures in the basin marginal zone.
Subtask 2.1: High-speed parallel processing computing and geoscience applications.
Subtask objectives include:
- establish the USGS Supercomputing Center for Geoscience Applications in Tucson based on our existing 30-node Beowulf cluster.
- establish the USGS Supercomputing Center for Geoscience Applications in Tucson as a shared USGS-University of Arizona facility. Also, to examine the possibility of charging UofA clients for use of this facility. The funds received will be used to run, maintain, and enlarge the USGS Supercomputing Center for Geoscience Applications.
- build a software package on the Beowulf cluster multiprocessor computer that can invert TEM data. This software will allow us to have full control over the inversion process. We can therefore input initial starting conditions that are geologically reasonable and perform sensitivity analysis on the results.
- develop and run geophysical dat analysis and interprataionsoftware on the Beowulf cluster.
- develop and run complex systems modeling software on the Beowulf cluster.
Subtask 2.2: Geologic framework and ground-water movement in the Verde River watershed, Arizona.
The primary objective of this subtask is to build a better understanding of the geologic framework in order to identify physical constraints that may serve as barriers or conduits to ground water. A goal is to delineate the geologic feasibility of ground-water flow paths from source (recharge zones) to sinks (discharge zones). A detailed understanding of the geologic framework of alluvial basins and its effect on ground-water movement is critical towards managing base flow in the Verde River watershed, Arizona---an area of rapid population growth where surface-water resources are scarce and municipal water supplies depend on ground-water pumping. Present pumping and future plans for additional pumping are centered on the large basin-fill aquifers that are interconnected with the Verde River.
Task 3: Chemical transport properties of basin marginal zones.
The objectives of Task 3 are:
- In coordination with Task 2, characterize in 3 dimensions the Mexican headwaters of the San Pedro and adjacent Cabullona Basin to the east utilizing innovative geologic databases and newly developed geophysical methods
- to create a realistic model of the sub-basin configuration, groundwater barriers and flowthrough zones and visualize the downstream link to surface flow characteristics prior to the entry of these waters into US territory
- combine developed individual models (GIS-based SEDMOD, NETPATH) with precipitation/chemical stream-loading process data to develop a Discrete Event System Specification (DEVS) scenario to present and calculate the properties that affect attenuation factors. Cognitive maps will be developed to characterize potential contaminant source areas and their specific mode(s) of dispersion within a watershed context.
Task 4: Predictive modeling of diseases dependent on geologic and climatic variables.
The objectives of this task include:
- Summarize all soil-borne diseases occurring worldwide
- Continue work on modeling C. immitis habitat and work with the coccidioidomycosis task the Southwest Climate Impacts project
- Define other diseases and or environmental contaminants that can be spatially and temporally modeled. Begin to develop cognitive maps to describe how the disease is affected by geology and climatic change
- Improve the understanding of baseline pollution from geologic materials including the development of non-point source pollution models that will help in the understanding of these sources of contaminants.
Task 5: Modeling Methods for Complex Systems.
Modeling of complex systems can be broken down into two distinct parts. The first part, which involves the observation and modeling of patterns, drives the second part, the modeling of the system dynamics. The goal of this task is the development of a set of universality models for processes relevant to pressing issues in the geosciences, and to advance our under-standing of how such models can be used for land use management and decision making. A secondary objective is communication of the methods of complex systems science to potential beneficiaries of this new science.
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