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Burke Minsley

Burke Minsley is a Research Geophysicist with the Geology, Geophysics, and Geochemistry Science Center.

Burke Minsley joined the USGS in 2008 as a Research Geophysicist with the Geology, Geophysics, and Geochemistry Science Center in Denver, Colorado. After receiving a B.S. in Applied Physics from Purdue University in 1997, Burke began his career as a field geophysicist working on offshore seismic vessels before receiving a Ph.D. in Geophysics from MIT in 2007. His work involves the development and implementation of innovative ground-based and airborne geophysical methods used in interdisciplinary studies to improve our understanding of Earth's geosphere, hydrosphere, and cryosphere. Burke's projects are interdisciplinary and geographically diverse, including permafrost mapping in Alaska, critical zone studies in a mountain headwater system in Colorado, and a large regional water availability study in the lower Mississippi River valley. He also works on development of computational methods for uncertainty quantification in geophysical datasets and associated geologic or hydrologic interpretations. In 2012, Burke received the PECASE award for his fundamental research on advancing airborne electromagnetic survey methodology and its use in studying permafrost. He is currently serving as President of the Near-Surface Geophysics Section of AGU from 2021-2022.

Professional Experience

  • 2008 - present: Research geophysicist, Geology, Geophysics, and Geochemistry Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Denver, CO

  • 2007 - 2008: Postdoctoral research fellow, Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

  • 2002 - 2007: Research assistant, Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

  • 1997 - 2002: Field geophysicist with WesternGeco, offshore

Education and Certifications

  • Ph.D. Geophysics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2007

  • B.S. Applied Physics, Purdue University, 1997

Affiliations and Memberships*

  • American Geophysical Union: President of the Near-Surface Geophysics Section of AGU from 2021-2022

Honors and Awards

  • USGS Unit Award for Excellence of Service - LandCarbon team member, 2017

  • Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering (PECASE), 2012

  • USGS Superior Service Award, 2012

  • Paper one of 'Ten Best of SAGEEP' 2010, 2011

  • Outstanding Student Paper Award, Near Surface section, Fall AGU, 2006

  • Martin Family Society Fellowship for Sustainability, MIT, 2004 - 2005

Science and Products

*Disclaimer: Listing outside positions with professional scientific organizations on this Staff Profile are for informational purposes only and do not constitute an endorsement of those professional scientific organizations or their activities by the USGS, Department of the Interior, or U.S. Government