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Jason Padgett

I'm a coastal field geologist and it is my goal to help improve understanding of megathrust earthquakes and coastal hazards. I analyze geologic evidence of past earthquakes, tsunamis, storm surge, and coastal landscape evolution. My research interests revolve around relative sea-level changes over varying timescales from minutes to millennia.

My field-based interdisciplinary research bridges the gap between short-term instrumental records and long-term geologic reconstructions of coastal landscape evolution. To extend seismic and coastal hazard records over centennial and millennial timescales, I employ a combination of paleoseismology, micropaleontology, stratigraphy, geomorphology, geospatial analysis, geophysical modeling, and sea-level research techniques. Inferences of coseismic land-level change, tsunami, and storm surge inundation heights are supported through sedimentological, geochemical, and microfossil (e.g., foraminifera) laboratory analyses. I specialize in foraminifera analysis, which is particularly valuable to reconstruct past relative sea-level elevations and identifying anomalous sand beds deposited by storms and tsunamis. I construct numerical age models to develop robust chronologies based on radiocarbon, 137Cs, heavy metal concentrations, and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating techniques. Much of my research is based along the Cascadia coastal margin, e.g., northern Humboldt Bay and Washington; however, I am also a part of active research projects in Rhode Island and Alaska.

At Pacific Coastal Marine Science Center, I manage the core labs and I’m the curator of the core repository. In the core labs, we conduct sediment core analysis, which could involve RXCT density imagery, MSCL analysis, core splitting, and subsampling. At the core repository, we maintain a vast of collection of >17,000 sediment cores which have been collected over the past ~50 years from all over the world.