Glacial geology of northern Mongolia
The largest scientific expedition to Mongolia since the dinosaur hunt of 1924 occurred from late July to early September 2000. The four universities involved were Whitman College, the University of Washington, Humboldt State University, and Mongolian Technical University. The 22 scientists included Justin Brooks, Bob Carson, Alison Gillespie, Justin Merle, and Devon Macauley from Whitman.
The four objectives of the expedition were:
1) Quaternary geology of three sites where glaciation was predicted on the basis of satellite imagery. Four of these were at the margin of the Darhad depression in Khovsgol, Mongolia's northernmost aimag. We learned that there was interaction between the glaciers and a huge lake in the Darhad depression. Samples were collected for soil analysis and radiocarbon and cosmogenic dating.
2) Tectonics of tree sites in northern and central Mongolia where there are active faults.
3) Limnology and botany in northern Mongolia. We identified plants, particularly in and near lakes.
4) Samples of late Cenozoic intracanyon basalt flows in northern Mongolia were collected, with hope for future petrography, geochemistry, and radiometric dating.