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2023 AESC Special Symposium

Dynamic Evolution of Earth and its Environment: magnetics, geochemistry, data mining, and numerical simulation

Convenors: Zheng-Xiang Li, Maria Seton, Andrew Roberts

Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre | June 27-30
Perth Australia November 5th 2019:  Aerial panoramic view of the beautiful city of Perth on the Swan river at dusk

The 2023 Australian Earth Sciences Convention will be held in the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre, June 27-30, during which this special symposium will be held.

Plate tectonic theory developed 60 years ago answered many questions regarding crustal motions and dynamics. The Earth science community has been largely discipline-focused in the following decades, and many fundamental questions, such as the driving force(s) for plate tectonics and the relationships between Earth’s core, mantle, crust, biosphere and hydrosphere, remain unanswered. However, more holistic approaches, aided by open-source software and open-access databases, have been taken since the 1990s in order to understand the multiple Earth layers as a dynamically interrelated Earth System. A new, ongoing geoscience revolution has been occurring.

This special symposium is designed to take advantage of involvement by Australian researchers in this new revolution (including through running numerous IGCP projects, and contributions as lead research groups in international collaborations) to take stock of where we are in answering numerous blue-sky questions (underlined by the potential session themes listed below), and to develop new ideas and collaborations for the coming decades.

Session themes:

  1. Global reconstruction and supercontinent cycles: geology, tectonics, palaeomagnetism, and data mining

Our ability of reconstructing global palaeogeography beyond the past 540 Myr over the past 30 years, and the recognition of the cyclitic occurrence of Pangaea-like supercontinents since at least 2 billion years ago, have brought a fundamental shift in our understanding of how the Earth engine works through Earth history. In this session we will have some world leaders presenting the current state of the field, and invite researchers to contribute to the debate from all key approaches including geological records, geophysics/palaeomagnetism, data mining, and plate reconstructions through time.

Coordinators: Derya Gürer and Yebo Liu

Invited speakers:  Dietmar Müller, Mathew Domeier, David Evans, Trond Torsvik


  1. Evolving Earth dynamics: from observation to computer simulation

4D geodynamic modelling using supercomputer enables us to understand how the multiple layers of the Earth System interact with the evolving tectonic plates to produce the geologically- and geophysically-documented Earth history, and the present-day Earth structure, topography, and environment.

Coordinators: Rhodri Davies, Weronika Gorczyk and Chuan Huang

Invited speakers: Nicolas Flament, Shijie Zhong


  1. Chemical geodynamics and mantle heterogeneity: differentiation vs. remixing

The present-day mantle is the result of 4.5 billion years of differentiation and remixing driven by various tectonic and geodynamic processes. A more accurately documented heterogeneity of the present-day mantle, and its evolution history using preserved ancient mantle-sourced rocks, will provide vital clues regarding how Earth’s dynamic system, including the supercontinent cycle, may have evolved which controlled the distribution and cycling of Earth materials (including water and carbon) and the formation of critical mineral resources. In this session we welcome presentation on both mantle heterogeneity and related processes of varying scale.

Coordinators: Luc Doucet

Invited speakers: Grace Shephard, Ben Mather, James Day


  1. Evolving Earth environment and climate: an Earth System approach from the core to the biosphere and hydrosphere

The unique nature of planet Earth made it habitable for complex life. In this session we will explore from an Earth System point of view how Earth’s evolving environment and climate, primarily driven by its internal dynamics such as the geodynamo in the core and the changing manner of mantle convection along with the related emergence of plate tectonics and the supercontinent cycle, plus interplanetary interactions, enabled life to evolve from single cells to an ecosystem that we enjoy today.

Coordinators: David Heslop, Martin Van Kranendonk

Invited speakers: Richard Bono, Benjamin Mills, Liao Chang


  1. Rock magnetism and applications: from resource exploration to archaeology

This session covers the wide application of rock-magnetism, geomagnetism and palaeomagnetism to a variety of fields such as resource exploration, pollution monitoring and archaeology.

Coordinators: Jim Austin, Agathe Lise-Pronovost

Invited speakers: TBA

Abstract submission and Registration

Abstract submission and registration (Now Open) will be handled via the 2023 AESC website. Please visit the link below for more information.

This webpage will be updated once programs and timetables become available.