I explore the tectonic evolution of Early Earth. More than 3.2 billion years ago, in contrast to plate tectonics, early Earth may have been evolved via hot stagnant-lid tectonics, where the lithosphere has been a single-plate dominated by volcanic processes. A global plate tectonic network only developed after the mantle sufficiently cooled. To test this hypothesis, I study Earth’s most ancient materials, including minerals and rocks that were formed during the Archean Eon. In particular, I focus on rocks preserved in southwest Greenland (Isua) and northwestern Australia (Pilbara) because they are the best-known rock records of Eoarchean or Paleoarchean, respectively. I use multi-disciplinary approaches coupled with advanced analytical tools (e.g., EBSD, TIMA, SIMS) to constrain their pressure-temperature-time-deformation pathways, thereby testing the tectonic models proposed for these ancient materials.
In addition to early Earth studies, I am also applying my research expertise to modern Earth’s plate tectonic subduction zones, including Himalaya.