Roy Van Arsdale

Roy Van Arsdale


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  • B.A., Rutgers University at New Brunswick, 1972
  • M.S. , University of Cincinnati, 1974
  • Ph.D., University of Utah, 1979

Research Interest

My research interests lie in the fields of structural geology and geomorphology. Most of my research is in active tectonics within plate interiors. I have conducted research in the New Madrid seismic zone of the central Mississippi River valley, Arizona, Oklahoma, and southeastern Australia.

Courses Taught

  • Structural Geology
  • Geomorphology
  • Tectonics
  • Physical Geology
  • Landforms

Recent Articles

  • Van Arsdale, R.B., Cox, R.T., and Lumsden, D.N., 2019, Quaternary Isostatic Uplift in the Northern Mississippi Embayment, Journal of Geology, v. 127, no. 1, p. 1-13.
  • Woolery, E.W., Whitt, J.W., Van Arsdale, R.B., and Almayahi, A., 2018, Geophysical and Geological Evidence for Quaternary Displacement on the Caborn Fault, Wabash Valley Fault System, Southwestern Indiana. Seismological Research Letters, v. 89, n. 6, p. 2473-2480. doi: 10.1785/0220180220
  • Martin, R.V., and Van Arsdale R.B., 2017, Stratigraphy and structure of the Eocene Memphis Sand above the eastern margin of the Reelfoot rift in Tennessee, Mississippi, and Arkansas, USA.  Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 129, p. 970-996.
  • Ward, A., Counts, R., Van Arsdale, R., Larsen, D., and Mahan, S., 2017 Quaternary displacement rates on the Meeman-Shelby fault and Joiner Ridge horst, eastern Arkansas: results from coring Mississippi River alluvium. Seismological Research Letters, v. 88, p. 442-455.
  • Greenwood, M.L., Woolery, E.W., Van Arsdale, R.B., Stephenson, W.J., and Patterson, G.L., 2016, Continuity of the Reelfoot Fault across the Cottonwood Grove and Ridgely Faults of the New Madrid Seismic Zone.  Seismological Society of America Bulletin, v. 106, p. 2674-2685.  doi: 10.1785/0120150290.
  • Lumsden, D.N., Cox, R.T, Van Arsdale, R.B., and Cupples, W.B., 2016, Petrology of Pliocene Mississippi River Alluvium:  Provenance Implications.  Journal of Geology, v. 124, p. 501-517.
  • Cupples, W., and Van Arsdale, R., 2014, The Preglacial "Pliocene" Mississippi River. Journal of Geology, v. 122, p. 1-15.
  • Van Arsdale, R., Cupples, W., and Csontos, R., 2014, Pleistocene-Holocene transition in the central Mississippi River Valley. Geomorphology, v. 214c, p. 270-282.
  • Van Arsdale, R., 2014, The New Madrid seismic zone of the Central United States. In Intraplate Earthquakes, P. Talwani (Ed), Cambridge University Press, p. 162-197.
  • Cramer, C.H., Van Arsdale, R.B., Dhar, M.S., Pryne, D., and Paul, J., 2014, Update of Urban Seismic Hazard Maps for Memphis and Shelby County, Tennessee: Geology and Vs Observations. Seismological Research Letters, v. 85, p. 986-996.
  • Cox, R.T, Lumsden, D.N., and Van Arsdale, R.B., 2014, Possible relict meanders of the Pliocene Mississippi River and their implications. Journal of Geology, v. 122, p. 609-622.
  • Van Arsdale, R., Pryne, D., and Woolery, E., 2013, Northwestern extension of the Reelfoot North fault near New Madrid, Missouri. Seismological Research Letters, v. 84, n. 6, p. 1114-1123.
  • Van Arsdale, R., and Cupples, W., 2013, Late Pliocene and Quaternary deformation of the Reelfoot rift. Geosphere, v. 9, n. 6, p.p1819–1831. doi:10.1130/GES00906.1
  • Pryne, D., Van Arsdale, R., Csontos, R., and Woolery, E., 2013, Northeastern Extension of the New Madrid North Fault-New Madrid Seismic Zone, Central United States. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, v. 103, p. 2277-2294.
  • Cox, R.T., Van Arsdale, R., Clark, D., Hill, A., and Lumsden, D., 2013, A revised paleo-earthquake chronology on the southeast Reelfoot rift margin near Memphis, Tennessee. Seismological Research Letters, v. 84, p. 402-408.
  • Bartholomew, M.J., and Van Arsdale, R.B., 2012, Structural controls on intraplate earthquakes in the eastern United States, in Cox, R.T., Tuttle, M.P., Boyd, O.S., and Locat, J., eds., Recent Advances in North American Paleoseismology and Neotectonics East of the Rockies: Geological Society of America Special Paper 493, p. 165-190, doi:10.1130/2012.2493(08).
  • Van Arsdale, R.B., Arellano, D., Stevens, K.C., Hill, A.A., Lester, J.D., Parks, A.G., Csontos, R.M., Rapino, M.A., Deen, T.S., Woolery, E.W., Harris, J.B., 2012, Geology, Geotechnical Engineering, and Natural Hazards of Memphis, Tennessee, USA. Environmental & Engineering Geoscience, v. 18, p. 113-158.
  • Calais, E., Freed, A.M., Van Arsdale, R., and Stein, S., 2010, Triggering of New Madrid seismicity by late-Pleistocene erosion. Nature, v. 466, p. 608-611.
  • Rosenbland, B, Bailey, Csontos, R., and Van Arsdale, R., 2010, Shear wave velocities of Mississippi embayment soils from low frequency surface wave measurements. Soils Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, v. 30, p. 691-701.
  • Van Arsdale, R.B., 2009, Adventures Through Deep Time: The Central Mississippi River Valley and Its Earthquakes. Geological Society of America Special Paper 455, 107 p.