Geology in the News

The UB Department of Geology stands at the forefront of pressing global issues, such as climate change, resource management and environmental protection. Learn more about how our expert faculty and fearless students conduct research that impacts the world around us. 

Buried under the ice!

Scientists journeyed to Greenland in an unprecedented experiment to drill for rocks beneath the ice sheet. But a crack in the ice threatened their mission — and their ability to predict the fate of the warming world.

Lava Penetrometer.
Martin and the lava penetrometer he built over the past year - now in action in Iceland!
  • UB student makes rare fossil discovery
    UB Geology student James Hanna discovered a rare fossil while digging at Penn Dixie Fossil Park and Nature Reserve in Hamburg, where he is a staff educator. Another Penn Dixie staffer and UB Geology student, Jonathan Hoag, found a similar fossil a few days later.
  • Nowicki recognized with Richardson Medal
    Sophie Nowicki and the ISMIP6 team she leads were recognized with the Richardson Medal by the International Glaciological Union for their academic and leadership activities in the design and production of future sea-level projections.
  • An earthquake in WNY?
    Did you feel the earthquake? That was the hot topic of conversation on Monday, as many of us awoke to a natural phenomenon that is common in California, but not here on the shores of Lake Erie. UBNow caught up with Tracy Gregg, professor and director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Geology, College of Arts and Sciences, to get her insights on earthquakes in general and on Monday’s event that had its epicenter in West Seneca — a little more than 16 miles from the UB North Campus.
  • Volcanic risk areas may be larger than previously thought, UB-led research suggests
    A study led by UB geologist Greg A. Valentine on the potential reach of volcanic eruptions could have significant impact on how hazard assessments are conducted in areas prone to eruptions.
  • UB scientists spend five days on Helheim Glacier
    After months of preparations, UB glaciologists Jessica Mejia and Courtney Shafer landed on Helheim Glacier in southeast Greenland in early September. Fog delayed their arrival by helicopter. Blistering winds in the forecast forced them to shorten their trip. Scarce resources for scientists on Greenland, a continuation of effects from the pandemic, caused other changes in plans.

Short News Stories

Mr. Jason Hanania (BS, 2023, expected) won First Place in the undergraduate poster competition for the Hydrology Division of the Geological Society of America (October 9 – 12, Denver, Colorado). Jason presented at this national conference that he conducted with Prof. Chris Lowry. Jason and Chris investigate infiltration and the storage of water in rain gardens on the west side of Buffalo. These rain gardens are one method that Buffalo uses to reduce combined sewer overflows. Jason was able to identify relationships between wetting and drying cycles based on the soil-moisture data he collected. He quantified the conditions where plants within the rain garden were able to maximize root water uptake, thus reducing flows into the stormwater system. Using a variably saturated flow model, he identified optimal soil types to maximize water storage. Congratulations, Jason! 

Jason Hanania next to his prize-winning poster at the Hydrology Division of the Geological Society of America (October 9 – 12, Denver, Colorado).