The Department of Geosciences presents

Geology Open Night

Fall 2014

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Pebbly Loess and 
Carolina Bays
on Long Island”

Gil Hanson

7:30  PM Friday 
April 12, 2014
ESS 001



October, 2012


Bill Holt


7:30  PM Friday 
November 14. 2014
ESS 001


Earth and Space Sciences Building 
Lecture Hall (Room 001)
SUNY Stony Brook Campus

There will be Refreshments and Demonstrations after the Geology Open Night Presentations.

Admission is Free!!

Link here to be placed on the mail or e-mail list to receive announcements.

How do I get to the Earth and Space Sciences Building at SUNY Stony Brook?

Geology Open night lectures are usually on topics in the geosciences related to the current research of the faculty, staff and students at SUNY Stony Brook. These presentations are intended for:

  • those interested in new developments in the sciences

  • earth science high school students and teachers

  • undergraduate and graduate students in geosciences

  • professional geologists

One hour toward In-service Credit is available for teachers attending the Geology Open Night lectures.


Pebbly Loess and Carolina Bays 
on Long Island”

Prof. Gil Hanson

7:30 PM Friday September 12, 2014
ESS 001 (Lecture Hall)

Pebbly loess is a common surficial deposit on Long Island that forms the soil that allows Suffolk County to be the leading agricultural county in the state of New York. Loess is wind-blown sediment consisting dominantly of well sorted silt with minor sand. However, this “wind-blown, sandy silt” is poorly sorted and contains pebbles up to several cm in diameter. This unit has been dated at Stony Brook University and at Wildwood State Park. The ages suggest that it was deposited about 13,000 years ago during the Younger Dryas event when the climate which had been warming since the glaciers left Long Island about 20,000 years ago suddenly became very cold and stayed cold for about 1,500 years.

Carolina bays are elliptical to circular-shaped, shallow depressions, usually 100 hundreds of meters in diameter, which are found in abundance along the Atlantic Coastal Plain. They have recently been found in undeveloped areas of Suffolk County. Carolina bays are characterized by a closed elevated rim and a flat bottom. In this talk we will explore the possibility that the Carolina bays are secondary impact craters associated with a bolide that struck the Laurentide ice sheet 12,900 years ago at the beginning of the Younger Dryas cooling event and that the pebbly loess on Long Island is the ejecta from the secondary impacts.

Evaluation of Ar-Ar ages of Individual Mica Grains for Provenance Studies of Loess,  
Long Island, NY by Jian Zhong, 2001

Age and Provenance of Long Island Loess by Vesna Kundic, 2005

Documenting the Occurrence of Carolina Bays on Long Island by Gloria Gill, 2013

Examples of LiDAR imagery of the Carolina bays on Cintos Research



You may also be interested in the following lectures:
Astronomy Open Night,

The World of Physics and
The Living World
These lectures are usually held in ESS 001 at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays during the academic year.

Professional Development letters are available for teachers and geologists for attending these lectures.

Web pages describing earlier Geology Open Night presentations

Spring 1998Fall 1998, Spring 1999, Fall 1999, Spring 2000, Fall 2000, Spring 2001,
Fall 2001, Spring 2002, Fall 2002, Spring 2003, Fall 2003Spring 2004, Fall 2004,
Spring 2005, Fall 2005, Spring 2006, Fall 2006, Spring 2007, Fall 2007, Spring 2008,
Fall 2008, Spring 2009, Fall 2009, Spring 2010, Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2011,
Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014


There will be Refreshments and Demonstrations after the Presentations.

Admission is FREE!

Presentations are in Room 001 ESS Building SUNY Stony Brook

How do I get to the Earth and Space Sciences Building at SUNY Stony Brook?