DAVIES, GEOFFREY / Earth sciences / Researchers

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Earth sciences / DAVIES, GEOFFREY




Dr. Geoff Davies is a Senior Fellow in the Research School of Earth Sciences of the Institute of Advanced studies at the Australian National University, Australia.

Dr. Geoff Davies is an internationally prominent geophysicist whose attention has turned increasingly to the state of our societies and the way we live on planet Earth

Research interests

His work is mainly on mantle dynamics and related topics. Mantle dynamics includes mantle convection, the dynamics of plate tectonics and rising mantle plumes. Related topics are the interaction of mantle convection with chemical heterogeneties in the mantle, and the thermal evolution of the earth’s interior, which controls the tectonic evolution of the earth.
The work is mainly computational, with simpler theoretical modelling when possible. The modelling is always guided by broader fluid dynamical principles and by observational constraints from geophysics, geochemistry and broader fields of geology.

Davies is a distinguished scientist in the field of geodynamics. Specifically he has been a leader in elucidating the roles of plates and plumes in mantle convection, and in reconciling geochemical and geophysical constraints on mantle flow. He has also made fundamental contributions to our understanding of the thermal history of the Earth.

The work is of fundamental importance to the geological sciences, since mantle convection is the means by which the Earth's internal heat controls all internally-driven geological processes. A characterizing feature of Geoffrey F. Davies's work is the great clarity, deep physical insight and quantitative success it has brought to the field. This is evidenced by his work showing
• that tectonic plates comprise the driving thermal boundary layer of large-scale convection in the mantle. Plates thus control the structure of mantle flow and of many observables that depend upon it.
• that Earth's topography provides key constraints on the structure of mantle flow. From this it can be argued that the plate mode of mantle flow is the dominant flow mode, that plumes comprise a secondary mode of flow.
• and, most recently, that the longevity of trace-element heterogeneities in the convecting mantle might potentially be accounted for in single-layer convection models when the models account for faster convection in the past and include higher-viscosity plates and subducted lithosphere with a moderate increase of viscosity with depth.

Geoff also identified the former presence of a large tectonic plate in the Pacifie basin - named the Izanagi plate - from a small but crucial feature in seafloor magnetic anomalies, which illuminates the transition between the Mesozoic and Cenozoic plate systems in the Pacific basin.

Geoffrey F. Davies work has been presented systematically in his recently-published book Dynamic Earth: Plates, Plumes and Mantle Convection. The book, which appeared in 1999, is widely used for teaching because of its clear exposition of the subject. Geoffrey F. Davies scientific leadership has been manifest most obviously in the originality and influence of his research. For example, his most significant publications have been cited together more than 1000 times. In short, there are few individuals who have demonstrated such a remarkable in-depth understanding across the full range of geophysical observations, dynamical processes and geochemical constraints on the mantle as Geoffrey F. Davies.

Prizes and awards

EGU Augustus Love Medallist 2005 "for original contributions in the field of mantle dynamics, in particular for elucidating the role of plate and plumes and for fundamental contributions in understanding the thermal and chemical evolution of the Earth".


Davies, G.F. A case for mantle plumes. Chinese Science Bulletin 50, 1541-1554, 2005.

Davies, G.F. Economia: New economic systems to empower people and support the living world. First edition 498, ABC Books, Sydney NSW, 2004.

Electroactive Polymers
The electrostrictive response of an ideal polar rubber.
Yamwong T., Voice A.M. and Davies G.R.,
J. Appl. Phys, Vol. 91 (3), pp 1472 - 1476, (2002)

Dielectric and pyroelectric properties of poly(2,3-bis(trifluoromethyl)norbornadiene)
Davies G.R., Hubbard H.V.St.A., Ward I.M., Feast W.J., Gibson V.C., Khosravi E. and Marshall E.L.
Polymer, Vol. 36, 2, pp 235-243, (1995)

Polymer Gel Electrolytes
NMR studies of ionic mobility in polymer gel electrolytes for advanced lithium batteries
Ward I.M., Williamson M.J., Hubbard H.V.St.A., Southall J.P., Davies G.R.,
Journal of Power Sources, Vol. 82, pp 700-704, (1999)

Pulsed field gradient n.m.r. diffusion measurements on electrolyte solutions containing LicF3SO3
Williamson M.J., Southall J.P., Hubbard H.V. St. A., Davies G.R. and Ward I.M.,
Polymer, Vol. 40, 14, pp 3945-3955, (1999)

Hyperbranched Polymers
Computer simulation of dendrimers and hyperbranched polymers.
Adolf D.B., Lyulin A.V. and Davies G.R.,
Abstr. Pap. Am. Chem. Soc., Vol. 222, pp 264-PMSE, (2001)

Statics and dynamics of model dendrimers as studied by molecular dynamics simulations
Karatasos K., Adolf D.B. and Davies G.R.,
J. Chem. Phys., Vol. 115, 11, pp 5310-5318, (2001)

Computer Simulations of Hyperbranched Polymers in Shear Flows
Lyulin A.V., Adolf D.B. and Davies G.R.,
Macromolecules, Vol. 34 no 11, pp 3783-3789, (2001)

Brownian Dynamics Simulations of Dendrimers under Shear Flow
Lyulin A.V., Adolf D.B. and Davies G.R.,
Macromolecules, Vol. 33, 9, pp 3294-3304, (2000)

Brownian dynamics simulation of linear polymers under shear flow
Lyulin A.V., Adolf D.B. and Davies G.R.,
J. Chem. Phys., Vol. 111, 2, pp 758-771, (1999)

Simulation of the intrinsic viscosity of hyperbranched polymers with varying topology 1. Dendritic polymers built by sequential addition.
Widmann A.H., Davies G.R.,
Computational and Theoretical Polymer Science, Vol. 8, 1-2 Pt 2, pp 191-199, (1998)

Simulation of Relaxation in Glassy Polymers
Origin of the distribution of potential barriers for methyl group dynamics in glassy polymers: A molecular dynamics simulation in polyisoprene
Alvarez F., Alegría A., Colmenero J., Nicholson T.M., and Davies G.R.,
Macromolecules, Vol. 33, 21, pp 8077-8084, (2000)

A molecular dynamics study of methyl group rotation in poly(vinyl methyl ether).
Saelee C., Nicholson T.M. and Davies G.R.,
Macromolecules, Vol. 33, 6, pp 2258-2265, (2000)

Modelling of methyl group rotations in PMMA
Nicholson T.M., Davies G.R.,
Macromolecules, Vol. 30 18, pp 5501-5505, (1997)

Modelling of semi-crystalline Polymers
Mechanical properties of semicrystalline polymers with lamellar morphology
Al-Hussein M., Davies G.R. and Ward I.M.,
J. Pol. Sci. part B: Polymer Physics, Vol. 38, 5, pp 755-764, (2000)

Towards first principles modelling of the mechanical properties of oriented poly(ethylene terephthalate).
Zhou J., Nicholson T.M., Davies G.R., Ward I.M.,
Computational and Theoretical Polymer Science, Vol. 10, 1-2, pp 43-51, (2000)

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