Research Activities -- John L. Isbell



UWM -- Clastic Sedimentology and Stratigraphy


Research Interests: Clastic Sedimentology and Stratigraphy, Sequence Stratigraphy, Historical Geology, Glacial and fluvial deposits and processes, The Late Paleozoic Ice Age, Gondwana Geology (Geology of the Southern Hemisphere: Antarctica, Argentina, South Africa, Australia), Landscape evolution during the Cretaceous and Tertiary, Experimental Sedimentology, Mars Analogues.


The Geologist Range at the head of the Nimrod Glacier, Antarctica

Field Area near Uspallata, Argentina.
Research Locations and Collaborators
  • Antarctica                                 
    • Beardmore Glacier Region -- with  Molly Miller (Vanderbilt University) and Chris Sidor (University of Washington).
    • Nimrod and Byrd Glacier Regions.
    • Shackleton Glacier Region.
    • Darwin Glacier Region -- with Rosemary Askin (Ohio State University) and Anne Grunow (Ohio State University).
    • Pensacola Mountains -- Ian Dalziel (University of Texas-Austin) Bryan Storey (University of Canterbury, New Zealand) and David Macdonald (University of Aberdeen, U.K.).
    • Southern Victoria Land -- with Rosemary Askin (Ohio State University) and Anne Grunow (Ohio State University).
    • Allan Hills ---- with Molly Miller (Vanderbilt University) and Chris Sidor (University of Washington).
    • Central Tranantarctic Mountains -- Study of ecosystems across the Permian−Triassic boundary with Edith Taylor (University of Kansas) Thomas Taylor (University of Kansas), Ruben Cuneo (MEF, Argentina).
    • Dominion Range --Study of detrital zircon isotope characteristics and sandstone analysis of Beacon strata with David Elliot (The Ohio State University).
  • Appalachian Basin
    • Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, and Ohio.
  • Argentina
    • Calingasta-Uspallata, Rio Blanco, and San Rafael Basins -- with Carlos Oscar Limarino (Univ. of Buenos Aires), Ana Tedesco (Universidad de Buenos Aires), Patricia (Pato) Ciccioli  (Universidad de Buenos Aires) and Sergio Marenssi (Univ. of Buenos Aires).
    • National  Science Foundation IRES Project: Integrated Research & Educational Training of Geoscience Students in Deep-Time Paleoclimatology, Western South America-- with Isabel Montañez (Univ. of California-Davis), Margaret Fraiser (UWM), Carlos Oscar Limarino (Univ. of Buenos Aires)Sergio Marenssi (Univ. of Buenos Aires).
    • Tepuel Basin--with Alejandra Pagani (MEF, Trelew, Argentina), Arturo Taboada (Universidad Nacional de la Patagonia),  Carlos Oscar Limarino (Univ. of Buenos Aires), Ruben Cuneo (MEF, Trelew, Argentina), Patricia (Pato) Ciccioli  (Universidad de Buenos Aires), and Margaret Fraiser (UWM).
  • Falkland Islands
    • Petrographic study.
  • Illinois Basin
    • Illinois and Iowa.
  • Mars
    • Collaborator on a NASA grant to R. Aileen Yingst, (Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium, UW-GB).
  • South Africa
    • Karoo Basin -- with Doug Cole (Counsel of Geosciences, South Africa) and Octavian Catuneanu (University of Alberta).
  • Western Interior Basins
  • Wisconsin

Wahl Glacier, Antarctica

The Late Paleozoic (Gondwana) Ice Age
Workin on glacial deposits of the Pagoda Tillite
near Mt. Mackellar, Antarctica (Photo by Pete Flaig).

Dolerite!  Why does it have to be dolerite?
John getting ready to board a helo at the
summit of  Mt. Isbell , Geologist Range,
Antarctica (Photo by Pete Flaig).

Late Paleozoic Glacial Deposits of the Pagoda Formation, Arrowhead Nunatak, Nimrod Glacier, Antarctica
Grants
Active Grants:
  • 2010-2013, National Science Foundation: Office of Polar Programs: Collaborative Research: Antarctic Ecosystems across the Permian−Triassic boundary: Integrating Paleobotany, Sedimentology, and Paleoecology. Co-PIs; Edith Taylor (University of Kansas), Thomas Taylor (University of Kansas), and John Isbell (UWM).
  • 2010-2013, National Science Foundation: Office of Polar Programs: Collaborative Research: Application of detrital zircon isotope characteristics and sandstone analysis of Beacon strata to the tectonic evolution of the Antarctic sector of Gondwana. Co-PIs; David Elliot (The Ohio State University) and John Isbell (UWM).
  • 2008-11, National Science Foundation: Office of International Science and Engineering; Research Grant: Collaborative IRES: Integrated Research & Educational Training of GeoscienceStudents in Deep-Time Paleoclimatology, Western South America. P.I.s Isabel Montañez, (Univ. of California Davis), John Isbell (UWM), and Margaret Fraizer (UWM).  
Pending Proposals:
  • 2010-2013, National Science Foundation: EAR - Sedimenatary Geology and Paleobiology: COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH: Testing sea-level rise, tectonism, and extinction as causes of environmental disruption at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary (MT, ND, USA). Co-PIs, David Fastovsky (University of RI), Peter Sheehan (Milwaukee Public Museum),  John King (University of RI), and John Isbell (UWM).

Total Grants:
  • National Science Foundation Grants
    • 12 NSF Research Grants
    • 2 NSF Workshop Grants
    • 1 Contributor on NSF RET Grant
    • 2 NSF Travel Grants
  • 2 UWM Graduate School Grants
  • 1 UWM Center for Latin American and Carribean Studies Travel Grant.
  • 1 Shell Oil Company Grant
  • 1 Chevron Oil Company Grant
  • 1 NASA Grant (Contributor)
  • 1 CIC Grant
  • 1 Byrd Polar Research Center Grant (Ohio State)
  • 1 Presidential Fellow Grant (Ohio State)
  • 1 Friends of Orton Hall Grant (Ohio State)
  • 1 Basin Analysis Group Grant (Ohio State)
  • 1 Goldich Fund Grant (Northern Illinois)
  • Total Grants ~ $1.9 Million.


John at Field Camp,
Wind River Mountains, Wyoming

Glacigenic deposits of Namurian age, Río del Peñon, Argentina.

Fossil Cliffs, with exposures of the Basal Beds and the Darlington Limestone, Maria Island, Tasmania, Australia
Activities and Awards
Selected Activities and Awards:
  • Chair, Dept of Geosciences UWM. (Fall 2009-Spring 2012)
  • Professor and Research Scientist, Dept. of Geosciences, UWM
  • Faculty affiliated with Conservation and Environmental Science Major, UWM.
  • Fellow, Geological Society of America
  • Associate Editor of the international geological journal PALAIOS
  • Co-Editor, Geological Society of America Special Paper 441: Resolving the late Paleozoic Ice Age in Time and Space
  • Delegate: The International Gondwana Subcommission.
  • Chief Scientist, 03-04 Beardmore Remote Research Camp, Antarctica
  • Field Leader and/or participant of 14 Research expeditions to Antarctica
  •  Field Leader and/or participant of 6 Research expeditions to South America (Argentina and Brazil)
  • Co-Host, National Science Foundation International Workshop on the Late Paelozoic Ice Age.
  • Mt. Isbell  --   Find this site in Google Earth
  • Antarctic Service Medal--Established by Congress and awarded by U.S. Department of Defense
  • Chair, Division of Natural Sciences Executive Committee, UWM. 2006-08.
  • UWM Graduate School, Research Committee Award Recipient
  • UWM Graduate School, Research Growth Initiative Award Winner
  • Mentor, UWM CIC and Ronald McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program
  • Mentor, National Science Foundation RET (Research Experience for Teachers) Program at UWM.
  • Research Scientist, Byrd Polar Research Center, The Ohio State University
  • Research Assistant, Byrd Polar Research Center, The Ohio State University
  • The Ohio State University, Distinguished Ph.D. Research Award
  • The Ohio State University,  Speaker Research Award
  • The Ohio State University, Presidential Fellowship Award
  • The Ohio State University, Shell Fellowship Award
  • Geology Student President, The Ohio State University.
  • Northern Illinois University, Rhoten Smith Award
  • Nothern Illinois University Goldich Award
  • Total Research Funding of  ~ $1.3 Million
Professional Memberships














The Cretaceous Hell Creek and the Tertiary Fort Union Formations, Makosika State Park, Montana

Ice Contact Delta, West Bend, Wisconsin.
 Tom Hooyer for scale.
Recent Publications

Recent Books:

Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., and Isbell, J.L. (Editors), 2008, Resolving the Late Paleozoic Ice Age in Time and Space: Boulder, CO, Geological Society of America Special Publication 441, 354 p.

Recent Papers:

Henry, L. C., Fraiser, M. L., Limarino, C.O., and Isbell, J. L., in review, Panthalassan margin volcanism: a driver of late Paleozoic deglaciation and extinction?:Journal of South American Earth Sciences.

Henry, L.C., Isbell, J.L., Limarino, C.O., McHenry, L.J., and Fraiser, M.L., in press, Mid-Carboniferous deglaciation of the Protoprecordillera, Argentina, recorded in the Agua de Jagüelpaleovalley: Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology.

Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., Isbell, J.L., Henry, L. C., and Domack, E.W., in press, Stratigraphic signature of the late Palaeozoic Ice Age in the Parmeener Supergroup of Tasmania, SE Australia, and inter-regional comparisons: Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology.

Isbell, J.L., in press, Environmental and paleogeographic implications of glaciotectonic deformation and glacial basinal deposits within Permian strata of the Metschel Tillite, Southern Victoria Land, Antarctica, In Lopez-Gamundi, O. and Buatois L., eds, Late Paleozoic glacial events and postglacial transgressions in Gondwana: GSA Special Paper.

Gulbranson E.L., Montañez, I.P., Schmitz, M., Limarino, C.O., Isbell, L.J., Marenssi, S.A., and Crowley, J., in press, High-resolution U-Pb Calibration of Carboniferous Glacigenic Deposits, Río Blanco and Paganzo basins, Northwest Argentina: Geological Society of America Bulletin.

Briggs, D.E.G., Miller, M.F., Isbell, J. L., and Sidor, C.A., in press, Permo-Triassic arthropod trace fossils from the Beardmore Glacier area , central Transantarctic Mountains, Antarctica: Antarctic Science.

Miller, M.F. and Isbell, J.L.,in press, Reconstruction of a high-latitude, postglacial lake: Mackellar Formation (Permian), Transantarctic Mountains, In Lopez-Gamundi, O. and Buatois L., eds, Late Paleozoic glacial events and postglacial transgressions in Gondwana: GSA Special Paper.

Caputo, M.V., de Melo, J.H.G., Streel, M., and Isbell, J.L., 2008, Late Devonian and Early Carboniferous glacial records of South America, in Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., and Isbell, J.L., eds., Resolving the Late Paleozoic Ice Age in Time and Space: Boulder, CO, Geological Society of America Special Publication 441, p. 161-173.

Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., and Isbell, J.L., 2008, The late Paleozoic ice age--A review of current understanding and synthesis of global climate patterns, in Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., and Isbell, J.L., eds., Resolving the Late Paleozoic Ice Age in Time and Space: Boulder, CO, Geological Society of America Special Publication 441, p. 343-354.

Henry, L.C., Isbell, J.L., and Limarino, C.O., 2008, Carboniferous glacigenic deposits of the proto-Precordillera of west-central Argentina, in Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., and Isbell, J.L., eds., Resolving the Late Paleozoic Ice Age in Time and Space: Boulder, CO, Geological Society of America Special Publication 441 , p. 131-142.

Isbell, J.L., Fraiser, M.L., and Henry, L.C., 2008, Examining the Complexity of Environmental Change during the Late Paleozoic and Early Mesozoic: PALAIOS, v. 23, p. 267-269.

Isbell, J.L., Koch, Z.J., Szablewski, G.M., and Lenaker, P.A., 2008, Permian glacigenic deposits in the Transantarctic Mountains, Antarctica, in Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., and Isbell, J.L., eds., Resolving the Late Paleozoic Ice Age in Time and Space: Boulder, CO, Geological Society of America Special Publication 441, p. 59-70.

Isbell, J.L., Cole, D.I., and Catuneanu, O., 2008, Carboniferous-Permian glaciation in the main Karoo Basin, South Africa: stratigraphy, depositional controls, and glacial dynamics, in Fielding, C.R., Frank, T.D., and Isbell, J.L., eds., Resolving the Late Paleozoic Ice Age in Time and Space: Boulder, CO, Geological Society of America Special Publication 441, p. 71-82.

Sidor, C.A., Miller, M.F., and Isbell, J. L., 2008, Tetrapod burrows from the Triassic of Antarctica: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 28, p. 277-284.

Montañez, I.P., Tabor, N.J., Niemeier, D., DiMichele, W.A., Frank, T.D., Fielding, C.R., Isbell, J.L., Birgenheier, L.P., and Rygel, M.C., 2007, CO2-forced climate and vegetation instability during Late Paleozoic deglaciation: Science, v. 315, p. 87-91.

Camp Move using a Twin Otter, Bowden Neve, Antarctica.


Camp move to Moody Nunatak on the Marsh Glacier, Antarctica.
Photo by Pete Flaig (UWM).

Allan Hills Camp, SVL, Antarctica
Description of  Current Research Teaching Activities
Selected Field Photos Condensed  Vitae
UWM



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University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Last Modified : 6-14-09