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My current grad-students & main master projects (for PhD projects, see Research)

Plaster experiments (with Eivind Bastesen and Atle Rotevatn)

Plaster can be used to model different kinds of (mostly) brittle deformation in the laboratory. Three students have recently started to model within the three principal tectonic regimes; extension, contraction and strike-slip.

• Study fault geometries formed in the three different regimes
• Compare with real examples from outcrop and seismic data sets
• Explore the temporal development of structures in the different settings under different boundary conditions.
• Understand the range of likely and possible deformation styles in the three different regimes, from large- to small-scale structures.

YouTube movie of plaster experiment. Plaster people

Strike-slip model (Nov 13, 2013).

Extensional model.



Utah sandstone project I (3 students, with John Howell)

The background for these theses is the fact that different sandstone units on the Colorado Plateau weather and fracture differently. Some form mesas with very steep (subvertical) cliffs, while others form more undulating and “soft” shapes with less steep slopes. We can quantify this in 2d by measuring slopes along traverses/profiles, or in 3d by means of digital elevation models. The differences in weathering and the way that the sandstones fracture are closely related. Some developed lots of fractures (joints) while others develop very few.

These studies will involve
•Comparing sedimentary facies
•Comparing fracture development
•Comparing diagenesis, burial depth, rock mechanical properties, grain size, grain size distribution etc.

Navajo Sst atop Wingate Sst. The Wingate fracture heavily, making steep cliffs while the Navajo erodes into more gentle landforms with less prominent fractures.

Moab Mbr showing systematic fracture pattern above much less-fractured Slickrock Sandstone near Moab.

Utah sandstone project II: contractional deformation of sandstone

• Structural mapping of thrust faults in the Entrada and Curtis Formations.



Plaster experiments:

Margrethe Sæterdal Bøyum
: Eextensional regime.

Marie Djupevåg Eri
: Contractional regime.

Maria Seim
: Strike-slip regime.

Christine Andersen
: Seismic modeling of faulted strata, based on plaster experiments (Main advisor: Tor Arne Johansen)

Utah sandstone project I:

Linn Heienberg: Mineralogical and lithological controls on fracture patterns of selected arid continental deposits on the Colorado Plateau. With John Howell.

Mette Lundberg: Mineralogy and weathering characteristics of selected Cretaceous shallow marine and paralic deposits of the Colorado Plateau With John Howell.

 Ragnhild Tunheim: Mineralogy and weathering characteristics of selected arid continental deposits of the Colorado Plateau. With John Howell.

Utah sandstone project II:

Marita Thommassen
: Contractional deformation of sandstone.

Rift-related projects:

Rosa Polanco-Ferrer: Northern North Sea rift system, with emphasis on the Tampen area. Project: MultiRift.

Chao Deng (PhD, U of Bergen): North Sea Rift, modeling. Project: MultiRift

Anette Broch Mathisen Tvedt: Salt tectonics (Main advisor: Atle Rotevatn). Project: SALTEC.

Cleber Peralta
: Sinai/Red Sea rift project, comparing the structural pattern in the basement with the rift-related fault pattern in the overlying sediments.

Flavio Almeida
: North Sea rift project; fault growth and fault interaction.

Deformation of porous sandstones:

LuisaLuisa Zuluaga: Contraction of porous sandstones (COPS). Project: COPS.

Elin SkurtveitElin Skurtveit : sandstone deformation experiments.ault interaction. (main advisor: Anita Torabi). Project: IMPACT

Sand injection, Utsira Fm:

ElisaElisa Christensen: Remobilization of sand, Utsira Formation, North Sea (Main advisor: Christian Hermanrud).

MaikenMaiken Haugvaldstad: Remobilization of sand, Utsira Formation, North Sea (Main advisor: Christian Hermanrud).


Martine Johnsen:
Seismic hazards in the Bergen area (Main advisor: Mathilde Sørensen).


Ester Cobles
Ester Cobles:
Structural/thermochronology study of the Lærdan-Gjende Fault, S Norway. (Main advisor: Anna Ksienzyk).