College of Science & Engineering
This group's research in this area is focused on understanding controls on heat and mass transfer processes responsible for hydrothermal venting from the floor of Yellowstone Lake. Yellowstone Lake is the is the largest high-altitude lake in North America. Although Yellowstone National Park is famous for abundant and spectacular hydrothermal activity, recent geochemical and geophysical studies indicate the existence of hundreds of hydrothermal vents on the lake floor, issuing fluids with high concentrations of elements including: As, B, Li, Hg, Mo, CO2, and H2S. These researchers' investigation of Yellowstone Lake vents is part of the NSF funded Hydrothermal Dynamics of Yellowstone Lake (HD-YLake) project. This interdisciplinary project uses geophysical and geochemical instrumentation to study how the lake floor hydrothermal vents respond to tectonic, magmatic, and climatic processes. It is critical that heat and mass transport models be conducted to confirm field observations.