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The University of Southampton
Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton

Dr Derek Keir awarded Jason Morgan Early Career Award

Published: 7 October 2011

Dr Derek Keir, Lecturer in Earth Science, has been awarded the prestigious Jason Morgan Early Career Award, presented by the American Geophysical Union's (AGU) Tectonophysics section.

The award recognises the outstanding research contributions of the awardee at their career stage and their exceptional future potential for continued contributions to tectonophysics.

Dr Derek Keir

Derek, a member of the Geology & Geophysics group, uses seismology to understand deformation processes at plate boundaries, with particular focus on the evolution of continental rifts through to formation of new ocean basins and associated passive continental margins.

His current research projects are based in the three rifts (East African, Red Sea, and Gulf of Aden rifts) forming the Afar triple junction, and as a result, his work also impacts understanding the tectonic evolution of the region.

Derek is also interested in the interaction between magmatic and tectonic processes at volcanoes, as well as seismic and volcanic hazards associated with plate boundaries.

As well as his active research, Derek is the coordinator of Ocean and Earth Science's undergraduate remote sensing and GIS modules, and also contributes to teaching Geology field courses.

Professor Tim Minshull, Head of Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton, says: "I congratulate Derek on a very prestigious award – this degree of international recognition at an early career stage bodes very well for the future."

The Final Rift

Research completed by Dr Derek Keir into the final stages of continental break-up has shown a final episode of plate stretching may be responsible for the eruption of large volumes of magma often seen at magmatic rifted margins.

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