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Caden Howlett




PhD in Geosciences

University of Arizona, in progress.


MS in Earth Sciences--Geology

Montana State University, May 2020.


BS in Earth Sciences--Geology

Montana State University, June 2018. 

I am a PhD candidate at the University of Arizona studying geoscience, interested in the development of Cordilleran fold-thrust belts.


I am working with my advisors Barbara Carrapa and Peter DeCelles to determine the structure and kinematics of the Andean thrust belt between 32-35°S, with particular focus on the hinterland region on the border with Chile.

My research interests involve integrating geologic mapping, low-T thermochronology, geochronology, and thermal history modeling.  My work considers new data in a regional context, enabling the testing and/or creation of tectonic and geodynamic models.  I love dabbling with GIS software and learning about the complexities of the apatite fission-track method.

Deeply interested in planetary field geology and aspire to conduct field work on the moon or Mars.


September 23: Presented Age-elevation relationships from Cerro Mercedario (6720m) record exhumation of the La Ramada massif, high Andes of western Argentina at the 18th International Conference on Thermochronology, Riva del Garda, Italy.


February 23: I joined the ALFA Mars team, an international group of scientists and engineers searching for life on the red planet.  We are working towards a Mars analog experiment in the Arctic in the coming years.  See more on the project here.

February 23: I did a Q&A with the UArizona College of Science discussing science communication and recent geoscience outreach efforts. Check it out here.

January-February 23: 6-week field season in Argentina and Chile with Mr. Ronemus.  Good times!

October 22: Presented more new science from the Little Belt Mtns at the Annual GSA meeting in Denver. 

doi: 10.1130/abs/2022AM-382668 


January-March 22: 10-week field season in south-central Andes (31-36°S) with Chance Ronemus. Successful summit of Cerro Mercedario (6720m; 22,050ft). 

September 2021: Presented central MT Laramide work at the 17th International Conference on Thermochronology in Sante Fe, NM.


New Publication (August 2021): New paper in Tectonics with Aislin Reynolds and Drew Laskowski.  We present geologic mapping, igneous zircon U-Pb geochronology, zircon (U-Th)/He thermochronology, and Lu-Hf isotopes from the Anaconda metamorphic core complex in western Montana.

June-July 2021: Field season in Little Belt Mountains, central Montana, USA

April 2021: Presented preliminary low-T thermochronology results from Little Belt Mountains at 49th Annual UA GeoDaze research symposium.  Best graduate talk award

New Publication (December 2020): My MSc advisor Drew Laskowski and I published a paper in Geosphere.  We present new DZ U-Pb and Lu-Hf data from the Flint Creek Basin in western Montana and test the utility of these techniques for tracing the source of placer gold.

August 2020: Started PhD in Geosciences Department at the University of Arizona.

July-August 2020: Field season in northern Laramide of Wyoming and Montana.

New Publication (May 2020): New 1:24,000 scale geologic map across the Anaconda detachment fault, presented as a USGS/MBMG EDMAP sheet.

March 2020: Defended my MSc thesis at Montana State University, titled: Syn-orogenic magmatism, mid-crust exhumation, and placer gold deposition: The Anaconda metamorphic core complex of western Montana.

July-August 2019: Field season in south-central Tibet with Andrew Laskowski, Kurt Sundell, and Aislin Reynolds.

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