Solid Earth

The solid Earth provides a record of the Earth’s geological past, and also controls the characteristics and behaviour of processes active at the present day.

Remote sensing can be used to map the present-day motion of the Earth’s surface (e.g. using satellite geodesy techniques such as InSAR and GPS), and analyse the signs of active processes preserved in the landscape (using high-resolution images and topographic datasets). Multispectral imagery can be used to investigate the underlying geological structure, in tandem with field observations.


Alex Copley is an Earth Scientist, studying active tectonics from the scale of individual fault systems to large mountain ranges. His work spans observations of active deformation (using satellite geodesy, seismology, field 

Recent Publication

Reconciling Geophysical and Petrological Estimates of the Thermal Structure of Southern Tibet
In this paper, we summarize the range of these observations (combining petrological, geochemical, and geophysical observables) that are presently available and present a series of thermal models aimed at exploring what parameters for the thermal evolution of southern Tibet are capable of explaining all of these observations within a coherent framework. While present‐day observations require the presence of a cold India‐derived lithosphere underthrust beneath southern Tibet, geochemical and petrological data require that this was not present during the early Miocene and was removed prior to this. Further, to fit all observations, our models require that the average rate of underthrusting since the middle Miocene must have been greater than that observed at the present. Craig (2020) Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems