Ph.D. (Geology) University of New Brunswick, 1998
B.Sc. (Geology) Cardiff, 1991
Director of Teaching and Learning,
St. Thomas University
51 Dineen Drive
Fredericton , NB
Canada , E3B 5G3
Tel: 506-452-0610 (office)
Email:jamesw at stu.ca
All-Sky Camera Project Research Interests Service Teaching Publications TED Talks
Research Interests: I have been engaged in terrestrial and martian impact cratering since 1998. This has included a research program in conjunction with Richard Grieve (Chief Geoscientist, Natural Resources Canada) and Jim Garvin (Chief Scientist, NASA HQ). The goal of this research is to better understand cratering processes by studying cratering morphometry data collated in a new, extensive database of Martian impact craters. High resolution measurements of Martian craters in this database, in conjunction with Viking and Mars Global Surveyor MOC images, have allowed us to evaluate correlations in depth-diameter relations with elements of latitude, inferred target geology, altitude etc.
One focus of first post-doctoral research contract was the 100 km diameter Popigai impact structure, northern Siberia, Russia. This is the joint-fourth largest impact structure on Earth, which formed 35.7 million years ago by the impact of a 5 km diameter asteroid. I studied the petrology, mineralogy and geochemistry of the impact melt rocks found in the structure in order to refine the formation - cooling history of these rocks. Studies are also underway to better characterise some of the shock metamorphic transformations that minerals from Popigai have experienced due to the immense pressures generated during the impact, including variants of quartz such as the ballen quartz and brownish toasted quartz (published May 2002 in Geology).
A completed study (published 2000, EPSL, see below) of the isotopic compositions of material ejected from Upper Eocene impact craters indicates that Popigai is the source to melt ejecta droplets (known as microtektites and microkrystites) in samples from drill cores of ocean sediments from the Indian, Pacific, Atlantic Oceans and the Caribbean Sea. Statistical analysis of the compositions of Upper Eocene ejecta (published July, 2002, Mathematical Geology), also indicate that there are two geochemically discrete microtektite layers - the uppermost originating from the Chesapeake impact structure, the lowermost from Popigai.
- Small Bodies Discipline Working Group - Canadian Space Agency
- Member of the Astromaterials Working Group
- Past-President (Executive position), Science East Association Inc.
- Learning and Teaching Development Officer, St Thomas University
- Faculty Representative, Standing Committee on Information Technology, STU
- STS1713 Science Technology and the Earth (3ch)
- STS2303 Natural Disasters (3ch)
- STS2803 Controversies in the Earth and Environmental Sciences (3ch)
- STS3803 Space Exploration (3ch)
Spray, J., Hines, J., Grieve, R. and Whitehead, J. 2007. Meteor impact craters of North America. In: Kelly, P., Observers Handbook, Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. p.208-211.
Whitehead, J. 2006. Meteorite impact craters of North America. Observers Handbook, Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, p.224
Whitehead, J. 2005. Meteorite impact craters of North America. Observers Handbook, Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, p.
Grieve, R.A.F. and Whitehead, J. 2003. Meteorite impact craters of North America. Observers Handbook, Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, p.225-228.
Whitehead, J., Grieve, R.A.F, Spray, J.G. and Garvin, J.B. (2010). The effects of crater degradation and target differences on the morphologies of Martian complex craters. Geological Society of America Special Paper, v.465, p.67-80. PDF version coming soon.
Park, A.F. and Whitehead, J. 2003. Structural transect through the Silurian turbidites of the Fredericton Belt southwest of Fredericton, New Brunswick: the role of the Fredericton Fault during late Iapetus closure. Atlantic Geology, v.39, p.227-237 PDF version available
Whitehead, J., Grieve, R.A.F. and Spray, J.G. 2002. Petrology and mineralogy of melt rocks from the Popigai impact structure, Siberia, Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 37, p.623-648. PDF version available
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G. and Grieve, R.A.F. 2002. The origin of toasted quartz in terrestrial impact structures. Geology, 30, p.431-434. PDF version available
Marchand, E. and Whitehead, J. 2002. A multivariate and discriminant statistical analysis of the compositions of upper Eocene impact ejecta. Mathematical Geology, 34, p.553-570. PDF version available
Whitehead, J. 2001. The geology of the Fredericton-Mactaquac Dam area. In: Pickerill, R.K. and Lentz, D.L. (eds), Geology of New Brunswick, New England Intercollegiate Geological Conference, Guidebook, 83, p.A1-1 - A1-12 PDF version available
Whitehead, J., Papanastassiou, D.A., Spray, J.G., Grieve, R.A.F. and Wasserburg, G.J. 2000. Late Eocene impact ejecta: geochemical and isotopic connections with the Popigai impact structure, Earth and Planetary Science Letters 181, p.473-487.
PDF version of the paper
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G. and Dunning, G.R. 2000 U-Pb geochronology and origin of granitoid rocks in the Thetford Mines ophiolite, Canadian Appalachians, Bulletin of the Geological Society of America 112, p.915-928.
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G. and Reynolds, P.H. 1996. 40Ar/39Ar age constraints on the Taconic and Acadian orogenies in the Quebec Appalachians, Geology 24, p.359-362.
PDF version of the paper
Whitehead, J., Reynolds, P.R. and Spray, J.G. 1995. The sub-ophiolitic metamorphic rocks of the Quebec Appalachians, Journal of Geodynamics 19, p.325-350.
Whitehead, J. 2007. Invited review of Impact Structures in Canada by R.A.F. Grieve, Economic Geology, v.102, p.162.
Whitehead, J. 2010. Circles and squares: An exercise in effective communication and critical reading. Association of Atlantic Universities Teaching Showcase Proceedings, University of Prince Edward Island. Sept 24-26, 2010.
Whitehead, J., Butler, K.E.B. and Parrott, D.R., 2008. The Quaternary erosional and depositional history of the Black Point area, Saint John, NB based on seismic sub-bottom profiles. Atlantic Geological Society, 34th Annual Colloquium, Halifax, Nova Scotia, February, 2008. Atlantic Geology.
Whitehead, J. and Pheeney, P. 2008. Using the Atlantic All-sky Camera System to enhance space science delivery in New Brunswick, Annual meeting of the Canadian Space Agency's Small Bodies Working Group, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, 9-10 November, 2007. Journal of the Royal Astonomical Society of Canada, April, 2008, p.50.
Jutson, D., Macquaker, J., Whitehead, J., Bidgood, M and Johnson, B. 2004. Nannofossil and microfaunal analyses of ditch cutting samples from two wells from within the Silverpit impact crater, British Sector, North Sea: Evidence towards confirming the age and origin of the structure.10th International Nannoplankton Association Conference, 28th August-5th September, Lisbon, Portugal.
Whitehead, J, Jutson, D., Grieve, R.A.F., and J. G. Spray, J.G. 2004. Late Paleocene spherules from the North Sea: Probable sea floor precipitates - a Silverpit provenance unproven. Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, v.35, Abstract 1373, Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston (CD-ROM).
Whitehead, J. and Grieve, R.A.F. 2004. Shocked basement rocks from within the proposed Chesapeake Bay impact drill core. International Continental Drilling Project, United States Geological Survey workshop on deep drilling the Chesapeake Bay impact structure. Washington D.C.
Whitehead, J., Jutson, D., Grieve, R.A.F. and Spray, J.G. 2003. The origin of late Paleocene spherules from the North Sea and their relationship to the Silverpit structure. International Symposium on Impact Events in Japan, Southeast Asia and Pacific Rim, Yamaguchi, Japan, November 21-25.
Whitehead, J. and Miura, Y. 2003. Impact structures: Threat and effects. International Symposium on Impact Events in Japan, Southeast Asia and Pacific Rim, Yamaguchi, Japan, November 21-25.
Whitehead, J. Grieve, R.A.F. and Spray, J.G. 2003. The world crater database - 2002/2003. Recent updates. Keynote address, International Symposium on Impact Events in Japan, Southeast Asia and Pacific Rim, Yamaguchi, Japan, November 21-25.
Whitehead, J., Grieve, R.A.F. and Garvin, J.B. 2002. An evaluation of the scatter in MOLA depth vs diameter data for Martian complex craters using Viking and MOC images. 65th Annual Meteoritical Society Meeting, Los Angeles, CA. Supplement to Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 37(7), p.A150.
Whitehead, J. and Spray, J.G. 2001. The origin of toasted quartz in meteorite impact structures. Microscopical Society of Canada Annual Meeting, Fredericton, New Brunswick, July 6-8th, Abstracts with Program.
Whitehead, J., Grieve, R.A.F., Spray, J.G. and Masaitis, V.L. 2001. Shock metamorphosed minerals in the Popigai impact structure, Siberia. Atlantic Geoscience Society/Geological Association of Canada Environmental Earth Science Division Meeting, Feb. 10-12, Fredericton, NB. Abstracts with Program, p.45-46.
Whitehead, J., Grieve, R.A.F. Spray, J.G., Papanastassiou, D.A., Wasserburg, G.J. and Masaitis, V.L. 2000. In-situ and ejected melt rocks from Popigai, In: Plado, J. and Pesonen, L.J. (eds) Meteorite impacts in Precambrian shields. Programme and abstracts, 4th Annual Workshop of the European Science Foundation Impact Programme, Lappajarvi, Finland, May24-28, 2000, p.60-61.
Whitehead, J. and Park, A.F. 2000. The search for the Fredericton Fault: new exposures along the Longs Creek to Fredericton section of the (toll free) Trans-Canada Highway. Atlantic Geoscience, Atlantic Geoscience Society/Geological Association of Canada Environmental Earth Science Division Meeting, Feb. 10-12, Fredericton, NB. Abstracts with Program, p.45-46.
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G. and Grieve, R.A.F. 2000. Impact melt ejecta sources: Comparisons between several impact structures and their ejecta. Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Reno, Nevada, November, 2000.
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G., Grieve, R.A.F., Papanastassiou, D.A., Ngo, H.H. and Wasserburg, G.J. 2000. Rb-Sr and Sm-Nd of upper Eocene microtektites: A potential Popigai source. Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 31, Abstract 1373, Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston (CD-ROM).
Whitehead, J., Grieve, R.A.F., Masaitis, V.L. and Spray, J.G. 1999. Global ejecta from the upper Eocene Popigai impact structure, Siberia? Geological Association of Canada, Mineralogical Association of Canada Annual General Meeting, Sudbury 24, p.136.
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G. and Dunning, G.R. 1996. Oceanic and emplacement-related ages from the Thetford Mines Ophiolite, Quebec Appalachians, Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs, Annual Meeting, Denver, Co. 28, no.7, p.A438-439.
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G. and Reynolds, P.R. 1995. 40Ar/39Ar age constraints on obduction, Taconian and Acadian events in the south-western Quebec Appalachians, Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs, Northeastern Section, 27, p.91-92
Whitehead, J., Spray, J.G. and Reynolds, P.H. 1993. A new refined 40Ar/39Ar age for the dynamothermal sole of the Thetford ophiolite, and preliminary results from the Asbestos ophiolite, Canadian Appalachians. Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs, 25, p.A421
Whitehead, J. and Spray, J.G. 1992. Origin of shear-zone hosted plagiogranites within the Shetland Islands oceanic fragment, Scottish Caledonides, Geological Society of Canada/Mineralogical Society of Canada Abstracts with Programs, 17, p. A116
Return to the Top of the Page
Last updated October 14, 2012
by James Whitehead mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
This document: http://people.stu.ca/~jamesw