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Meghan Miller

Assistant Professor of Earth Sciences

Contact Information
E-mail: msmiller@usc.edu
Phone: (213) 740-6308
Office: ZHS 103

LINKS
Curriculum Vitae
Faculty Profile on Departmental Website
 

Education

Ph.D. Geophysics, The Australian National University, 2006
M.Eng Geoscience, Cornell University, 2000
M.S. Applied Geophysics, Columbia University, 1999
B.A. Physics and Geology, Whittier College, 1997
 

Postdoctoral Training

NSERC Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of British Columbia and Rice University, 2006-2008  
 

Academic Appointment, Affiliation, and Employment History

Tenure Track Appointments

Assistant Professor, University of Southern California, 2009-  
 

Non-Tenure Track Appointments

Research Associate, University of Calgary, 11/2008-04/2009  
 

Visiting and Temporary Appointments

Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Monash University, 03/2011-  
Visiting Professor, Università Roma TRE, Fall 2012   
Visiting Professor, University of Münster, 08/2012-10/2012  
 

Description of Research

Summary Statement of Research Interests

Meghan S. Miller studies earthquakes, tectonic processes, and plate motions to reconstruct the evolution of the dynamic Earth. Her research focuses on the three-dimensional structural evolution of the lithosphere and mantle near plate boundaries, such as the Caribbean, Western North America, and the Mediterranean, which are all seismically and volcanically active.
 

Research Keywords

Structural and observational seismology, tectonophysics, geodynamics, and plate tectonics.
 

Funded Research

Contracts and Grants Awarded

Using Dense Seismic Arrays to Map Deep Mantle Sharp Features (National Science Foundation), Meghan S. Miller, $187,000, 07/2014-06/2016  
Transitions in the Banda Arc-Australia continental collision as a bridge to understanding mantle and (National Science Foundation), Meghan S. Miller, Thorsten W. Becker and A. Joshua West, $719,000, 07/2013-06/2016  
CAREER: Slab structure and dynamics of arcuate shaped subduction zones (National Science Foundation), Meghan S. Miller, $522,530, 10/2011-09/2015  
Multi-scale observations of seismic anisotropy as a constraint for stress and deformation along the (Southern California Earthquake Center), Meghan S. Miller, Thorsten W. Becker, $30,000, 02/01/2014-01/31/2015  
Steps in lithospheric thickness: Investigating strain localization at major strike slip faults in so (Southern California Earthquake Center), Meghan S. Miller, Thosten W. Becker and James Dolan, $30,000, 2012-2013   
DAAD Research Visit Grant (German Academic Exchange Service), Meghan S. Miller, $2,000, 2012-2013   
PICASSO: Program to Investigate Convective Alboran Sea System Overturn (National Science Foundation), John Platt, Thorsten W. Becker, Meghan S. Miller, $862,001, 07/2010-07/2013  
Investigating strain localization and Moho offsets across major strike slip faults in southern Calif (Southern California Earthquake Center), Meghan S. Miller, $25,000, 03/2011-12/2011  
USArray Data Processing Short Course for the Next Generation of Seismologist (National Science Foundation), Meghan S. Miller, Gary Pavlis and Suzan van der Lee, $49,992, 2010-2011   
Examining the Evolution of the Colorado Plateau and Its Relation to the Surrounding Tectonic Provinc (National Science Foundation), Meghan S. Miller, Alan Levander, $160,094, 07/2009-06/2011  
Systematic mapping of the Moho beneath southern California (Southern California Earthquake Center), Meghan S. Miller, $25,000, 02/2010-02/2011  
 

USC Funding

Women in Science and Engineering. Imaging the Mediterranean from broadband seismic data: The overarching theme of this research is to study the tectonophysics of the Mediterranean region using broadband seismic data available in Europe. , $21,000, 2012-2013   
 

Publications

Book Chapter

Miller, M. S., Powell, K. (2001). Seismic Interpretation and Processing Applications. Computational Neural Networks for Geophysical Data pp. 101-118. Pergamon.
 

Journal Article

Bianchi, I., Miller, M. S., Bokelmann, G. (2014). Insights on the upper mantle beneath the Eastern Alps. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. 403, pp. 199-209.
Betts, P. G., Moresi, L., Miller, M. S., Willis, D. (2014). Geodynamics of oceanic plateau and plume head accretion and their role in Phanerozoic orogenic systems of China. Geoscience Frontiers. Vol. accepted
Kim, Y., Him, L., Miller, M. S., Pearce, F., Clayton, R. W. (2014). of an upper mantle seismic anomaly opposing the Cocos slab beneath the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, Mexico. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. Vol. in press
Sun, D., Miller, M. S., Holt, A. F., Becker, T. W. (2014). Hot upwelling conduit beneath the Atlas Mountains, Morocco. Geophysical Research Letters. Vol. in review
O'Driscoll, L. J., Miller, M. S. (2014). Lithospheric thickness in Alaska determined by Sp receiver functions. Tectonics. Vol. in review
van Hunen, J., Miller, M. S. (2014). Collisional processes and links to episodic changes in subduction zones. Elements. Vol. in review
Porritt, R. W., Miller, M. S., Darbyshire, F. (2014). Lithospheric shear velocity and discontinuity architecture of the Hudson Bay. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems.
Miller, M. S., Becker, T. W. (2014). Reactivated lithospheric-scale discontinuities localize dynamic uplift of the Moroccan Atlas Mountains: Comment – Reply. Geology. Vol. 42, pp. 338.
Moresi, L. N., Betts, P. G., Miller, M. S., Cayley, R. A. (2014). The dynamics of continental accretion. Nature. Vol. 508 (7495), pp. 245-248.
Piana Agostinetti, N., Miller, M. S. (2014). The fate of the downgoing oceanic plate: insight from the Northern Cascadia subduction zone. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. in review
Faccenna, C., Becker, T. W., Miller, M. S., Serpelloni, E., Willett, S. (2014). Isostasy, dynamic topography, and the elevation of the Apennines of Italy. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. in review
Miller, M. S., Zhang, P., Dolan, J. F. (2014). Moho structure across the San Jacinto fault zone: insights into strain localization at depth. Lithosphere. Vol. 6 (1), pp. 43-47.
Cooper, C. M., Miller, M. S. (2014). Craton formation: internal structure inherited from closing of the early oceans. Lithosphere. Vol. 6 (1), pp. 35-42.
Miller, M. S., Sun, D., Piana Agostinetti, N., Asimow, P., Li, D. (2014). High frequency seismic waves and slab structures beneath Italy. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. 391, pp. 212-223.
Miller, M. S., Becker, T. W. (2014). Reactivated lithospheric-scale discontinuities localize dynamic uplift of the Moroccan Atlas Mountains. Geology. Vol. 42, pp. 35-38.
Miller, M. S., Niu, F., Vanacore, E. (2013). Aspherical structural heterogeneity within the uppermost inner core: insights into the hemispherical boundaries and core formation. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors. Vol. 223, pp. 8-20.
Becker, T. W., Faccenna, C., Humphreys, E. D., Lowry, A., Miller, M. S. (2013). Static and dynamic support of western U.S. topography. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. in press
Alpert, L. A., Miller, M. S., Becker, T. W., Allam, A. A. (2013). Structure beneath the Alboran from geodynamic flow models and seismic anisotropy. Journal of Geophysical Research. Vol. 118 (10.1002/jgrb.50309)
Sun, D., Miller, M. S. (2013). Study of the western edge of African large low shear velocity province. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. Vol. 14 (10.1002/ggge.20185)
Miller, M. S., Allam, A. A., Becker, T. W., Di Leo, J. F., Wookey, J. (2013). Constrains on geodynamic evolution of the westernmost Mediterranean and northwest Africa from shear wave splitting analysis. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. 375, pp. 234-243.
Miller, M. S., Becker, T. W. (2012). Mantle flow deflected by interactions between subducted slabs and cratonic keels. Nature Geoscience. Vol. 5 (10), pp. 726-730.
Miller, M. S., Piana Agostinetti, N. (2012). Insights into evolution the lithospheric structure of Italy from S receiver functions. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. 345, pp. 49-59.
Levander, A., Miller, M. S. (2012). Evolutionary aspects of lithosphere discontinuity structure in the western U.S. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. Vol. 13 (Q0AK07), pp. 22.
Kim, Y., Miller, M. S., Pearce, F., Clayton, R. W. (2012). Seismic imaging of the Cocos plate subduction zone system in central Mexico. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. Vol. 13 (7), pp. 16.
Reid, M. R., Bouchet, R. A., Blichert-Toft, J., Levander, A., Liu, K., Miller, M. S., Ramos, F. C. (2012). Melting under the Colorado Plateau, USA. Geology. Vol. 40 (doi:10.1130/G32619.1), pp. 387-390.
Bailey, I. W., Alpert, L. A., Becker, T. W., Miller, M. S. (2012). Co-seismic deformation of deep slabs based on summed CMT data. Journal of Geophysical Research. Vol. 117 (doi:10.1029/2011JB008943), pp. 12.
Bailey, I. W., Miller, M. S., Liu, K., Levander, A. (2012). VS and density structure beneath the Colorado Plateau constrained by gravity anomalies and joint inversions of receiver function and phase velocity data. Journal of Geophysical Research. Vol. 17, pp. 19.
Miller, M. S., Piana Agostinetti, N. (2011). Erosion of the continental lithosphere at the cusps of the Calabrian arc: Evidence from S receiver functions analysis. Geophysical Research Letters. Vol. 38 (doi:10.1029/2011GL049455), pp. 6.
Liu, K., Levander, A., Niu, F., Miller, M. S. (2011). Imaging crustal and upper mantle structure beneath the Colorado Plateau using finite-frequency Rayleigh wave tomography. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. Vol. 12 (7), pp. doi:10.1029/2011GC003611.
Levander, A., Schmandt, B., Miller, M. S., Liu, K., Karlstom, K. E., Crow, R. S., Humphreys, E. D. (2011). Continuing Colorado plateau uplift by delamination-style convective lithospheric downwelling. Nature. Vol. 472 (7344), pp. 461-465.
Mason, W. G., Moresi, L., Betts, P. G., Miller, M. S. (2010). Three-dimensional numerical models of the influence of a buoyant oceanic plateau on subduction zones. Tectonophysics. Vol. 483, pp. 71-79.
Miller, M. S., Eaton, D. W. (2010). Formation of cratonic mantle keels by arc accretion: evidence from an S-receiver functions. Geophysical Research Letters. Vol. 37 (L18305), pp. doi:10.1029/2010GL044366.
Miller, M. S., Levander, A. (2009). Receiver function images of the Western U.S. lithosphere. EarthScope OnSite Newsletter. Vol. 4, pp. 2-3.
Miller, M. S., Levander, A., Niu, F., Li, A. (2009). Upper mantle structure beneath the Caribbean – South American plate boundary from surface wave tomography. Journal of Geophysical Research. Vol. 114
Miller, M. S., Niu, F. (2008). Bulldozing the core-mantle boundary: localized seismic scatterers beneath the Caribbean Sea. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors. Vol. 170, pp. 89-94.
Clark, S., Sobiasiek, M., Niu, F., Zelt, C. A., Magnani, M. B., Miller, M. S., Bezada, M. J., Levander, A. (2008). Identification and tectonic implication of a tear in the South American plate at the southern end of the Lesser Antilles. Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems. Vol. 9 (11), pp. Q11004.
Miller, M. S., Lee, C. T. (2008). Possible chemical modification of oceanic lithosphere by hotspot magmatism: seismic evidence from the junction of Ninety-east Ridge and the Sumatra-Andaman arc. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. 265 (3-4), pp. 386-395.
Rosenbaum, G., Gasparon, M., Lucente, F. P., Peccerillo, A., Miller, M. S. (2008). Kinematics of slab tear faults during subduction segmentation and implications for Italian magmatism. Tectonics. Vol. 27 (TC2008), pp. doi:10.1029/2007TC002143.
Miller, M. S. (2008). Breaking the slab. Nature Geoscience. Vol. 1 (11), pp. 730-731.
Miller, M. S., Gorbatov, A., Kennett, B. L. (2006). Three-dimensional visualization of a near-vertical slab tear beneath the southern Mariana arc. Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems. Vol. 7 (Q06012), pp. doi:10.1029/2005GC001110.
Miller, M. S., Kennett, B. L. (2006). Evolution of mantle structure beneath the northwest Pacific: Evidence from seismic tomography and paleogeographic reconstructions. Tectonics. Vol. 25 (4), pp. doi:10.1029/2005TC001909.
Miller, M. S., Kennett, B. L., Gorbatov, A. (2006). Morphology of the distorted subducted Pacific slab beneath the Hokkaido corner, Japan. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors. Vol. 156 (1-2), pp. 1-11.
Miller, M. S., Kennett, B. L., Toy, V. G. (2006). Spatial and temporal evolution of the subducting Pacific plate structure along the western Pacific margin. Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth. Vol. 111 (B2), pp. doi:10.1029/2005JB003705.
Miller, M. S., Gorbatov, A., Kennett, B. L. (2005). Heterogeneity within the subducting Pacific slab beneath the Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc: Evidence from tomography using 3D ray tracing inversion techniques. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. 235 (1-2), pp. 331-342.
Miller, M. S. (2005). Active seismicity in the Flinders Ranges. Journal of the Virtual Explorer. Vol. 20, pp. Paper 18.
Miller, M. S., Kennett, B. L., Lister, G. S. (2004). Imaging changes in morphology, geometry, and physical properties of the subducting Pacific plate along the Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Vol. 224 (3-4), pp. 363-370.
 

Research Report

Miller, M. S., Levander, A. (2011). Imaging the lithospheric structure in Western U.S. using S receiver functions. IRIS Annual Report.
 

Honors and Awards

NIH/NSF Career Development Award, 2011-  
NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2006-2008  
ANU Research School of Earth Science PhD Scholarship , 2003-2006  
Australian International Postgraduate Research Scholarship, 2003-2006  
Cornell University Geological Science Merit Scholarship , 1999-2000   
Society of Exploration Geophysicists Graduate Scholarship, 1999-2000   
Columbia University Henry Krumb School of Mines Fellow, 1997-1999  
Whittier College John Greenleaf Whittier Merit Scholar, 1993-1997  
 

Service to the Profession

Committees

Member, IRIS Education and Public Outreach Standing Committee, 03/2014-  
Member, IRIS PASSCAL Standing Committee, 11/2010-01/2014  
Member, IRIS Board of Directors Nomination Committee, Fall 2013   
Member, NSF - Earthscope Transportable Array Working Group, 01/2009-12/2013  
Chair, NSF - Earthscope Transportable Array Working Group, 02/2010-02/2012  
 

Editorships and Editorial Boards

Associate Editor, Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 06/2011-  
 

Media, Alumni, and Community Relations

U.S. Senate Briefing on 10 years of EarthScope Invited Speaker, Spring 2014   
NSF Earthscope Series Speaker, 2010-2011   
 
 
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