Activity Report

Activity Report of Open Application Course vol.18

International Joint Research Exchange relating to the Clarification of the Development Process from the Marine Plate to the Island Arc - Continent

Report from the Course in Earth and Planetary Science, Kanazawa University

From October 17 to November 1, 2019, seven young Indian and Filipino researchers were invited to conduct a joint research program.

<Object of 2019>

With the aim of understanding the formation process from the marine plate to the island arc and the continent, this laboratory conducts direct sampling from the marine plate, outdoor surveys of past marine plates and areas with island arc depths exposed to the surface and rock sample analyses. Because of the wide range of valuable research subjects in India and the Philippines, such as where past marine plates have been exposed to the surface, the dispatch of local researchers and students using the Sakura Science Exchange Program has been continually advanced.

Therefore, for the current year, the aim was to strengthen the joint research system relating to the processes of the formation from the marine plate to the island arc and the continent, not only with the material that constituted the marine plate, but also by sharing research themes of the materials of continental origin, how the areas consisting of these geological zones are currently involved in our daily lives (such as live faults and land sinking) and for some samples, by carrying out analyses at this research facility.

<Actual Exchange - Outdoor Survey and Field Discussion>

We conducted an outdoor survey near Obama City, Fukui Prefecture, where the ocean island arc depths are exposed to the coastline. However, outdoor research is not something that always goes as planned. The weather was poor so our observations had to be changed.

On the first day, the participants visited the Fukui Prefectural Varve Museum, where sediments from the Lake Suigetsu in Wakasa that successfully decoded the fluctuation records of the global environment over the past 70,000 years near where the survey was planned. They were excited with various geological records and exhibits that affect the global environment.

Scene of a quick stop to view the exhibits at the Fukui Prefectural Varve Museum
because of the poor weather

The following day, the weather recovered and a group of rocks could be observed from the upper crust as far as the upper mantle. Here was a new observation method according to the specialties of the students who were participating from the Philippines. We were able to share information in our research group.

Participants from the Philippines explaining to the participants the observational results drawing from their own experience, in areas where the marine plate is exposed to the surface

We also went on a tour to the Fossa Magna Museum in Itoigawa City, Niigata Prefecture, and had a panoramic view of the geological history of Japan and earth history which is a representative of the island arc, an exhibition of many rock groups, mainly jade, which is also recommended for Japanese stones. Also at nearby Fossa Magna Park, together we toured the faults that are interpreted to be plate boundaries. Everyone was moved, including by the excellence of its exhibition methods.

Commemorative shot at the plate boundary exposure in Fossa Magna Park

Analysis of rock samples: The University's chemical analysis facility was used to measure the primary elemental composition, and trace elemental composition of the minerals in the major rocks, and to study material changes that correspond to environmental changes from the marine plate to the island arc and the continent by studying the partial melting process of the rocks, their temperature and pressure history and their deformation history.

Chemical analysis using the chemical analyzers installed at Kanazawa University
The purpose of analyzing the samples was discussed beforehand and the results were also presented after the fact.
<Interaction with Students>

Sakura participating students gave their own research presentations and held discussions with students and participating faculty. Not only that, but they also participated in lectures in the form of active learning and held discussions in English with the students. The students also participated in the outreach activity "Touching Science," which is a project being undertaken by Kanazawa University, and they also interacted with tourists from the general public.

Participating in Kanazawa University outreach activity "Touching Science"
Contributing to the general dissemination of Earth science