Geodynamics and Global Tectonics:
Studies of dynamic processes on Earth, such as the geomagnetic field and its temporal variations, terrestrial heat flow and mantle convection, earthquakes and lithosphere structure. Applications of various geophysical methodologies in tectonic studies. Main research projects:

1) Crustal structure and upper mantle in Brazil and South America: The use of seismic data from local or distant earthquakes, as well as controlled explosions to study the crustal structure and upper mantle, in Brazil and in South America, combined with other geophysical techniques. Researchers: Marcelo Assumpção, Marcelo Bianchi, Victor Sacek.

2) Impact structures: Study of impact structures using data derived from potential methods (gravimetry and magnetometry), seismic and geoelectrical data. Characterization of the petrophysical properties (density, magnetic susceptibility and remanent magnetization) of different impact products. These data allow us to estimate more accurately various parameters of interest in the characterization of these structures including the study of the formation of the impact rings. Researchers: Renato PradoJorge PorsaniVagner ElisRicardo TrindadeYara Marangoni

3) Integrated geophysical studies of structures and crustal lithosphere of SE Brazil: The proposed research focus at processing of aerial surveys of data provided by the CPRM and the joint interpretation of geophysical data in the Brazilian S-SE region on a regional scale. Detailing and modeling becomes possible by performing a local gravimetric study of these structures. The results are an important contribution to the evaluation of mineral resources in Brazil. The proposed activities include the participation of undergraduate and graduate students. Researchers: Wladimir ShukowskyMarta Mantovani.

4) Sismotectonic studies in Brazil and South America: Determination of current tectonic stress by local earthquakes data or telesismicity and its correlation with the tectonic features of local or regional character. This project wants to understand the distribution of intraplate seismicity, its relationship with crustal and lithospheric structures and models of stress geotectonic. Researchers: Marcelo AssumpçãoMarcelo Bianchi.

5) Computational geodynamic modeling: We use different numerical methods to study convective processes in the Earth's mantle, the geodynamics of the lithosphere and the interaction between the Earth's internal dynamics and surface processes of erosion and sedimentation in different tectonic contexts. Researchers: Victor SacekFernando Brenha Ribeiro.

6) Geodynamics of South America plate with emphasis on study of tholeiitic and alkaline magmatism: We investigate the geodynamic processes affecting the plate of South America, particularly those associated with generation of large magmatic provinces. Geological, geochemical, geophysical and paleomagnetic data are integrated for interpretation. Researchers: Marcia ErnestoLeila MarquesNaomi UssamiMauricio BolognaYara Marangoni.

7) Integration of terrestrial, marine and satellites gravimetric data in lithospheric studies: Bouguer anomalies, Free-air anomalies and geoid heights are obtained by least squares collocation, the anomalies are obtained with spatial resolution of 10 km. The data are derived from terrestrial data bases, marine and satellite (altimetry, GRACE and GOCE). Digital models of geopotential (acceleration, tensor gradient of gravity and geoid) in local or lithospheric scales are used in studies of different features of the Earth's lithosphere. Researcher:  Eder Molina

8) Environmental magnetism: The concentration and composition of magnetic minerals are strongly influenced by the deposition environment. Recently, several studies have used magnetic information obtained in sediments, soils and sedimentary rocks as indicators of sedimentary and pedogenic processes. In this line of research we integrate the environmental magnetism data with data from other tools (geochemistry, sedimentology, soil science, microbiology, Mossbauer spectroscopy, optic and electron microscopy) in order to make paleoenvironmental reconstructions. Researchers: Ricardo TrindadeMarcia Ernesto.

9) Paleogeography of South America cratonic units and the evolution of supercontinents: This project aims to determine the paleogeography of cratonic units belonging to South America, to establish their geodynamic evolution in the formation of supercontinents Columbia, Rodinia and Gondwana and its implication in the paleoclimatic evolution of the planet.  Researchers: Manoel D´AgrellaMarcia ErnestoIgor PaccaRicardo Trindade.

10) Terrestrial magnetic field variations in different time scales: the variations of the terrestrial magnetic field at different time scales, including historical time, prehistoric and geological time intervals are studied from paleointensity and paleomagnetism measures in rocks and ceramic material of South America. Many aspects of field are investigated including: (i) secular variation of non-dipole component; (ii) the existence of archaeomagnetic arqueomagnéticos; (iii) the relationship between the intensity and stability of the dipole field, and (iv) trajectories during reversals of the geomagnetic poles. Researchers: Ricardo TrindadeMarcia ErnestoIgor Pacca

Applied Geophysics Exploration of Natural Resources, the Geotechnical and Environmental Problems: Development of methodologies for the acquisition, processing and interpretation of geophysical data targeting the imaging of sub-surface for prospecting purposes of natural resources, environmental studies and geotechnical. Main research projects:

1) Studies of sedimentary and basement aquifer: Integrated application of geophysical methods, modeling and development of computer programs in order to characterize aquifers, both in sedimentary basins, and in regions of crystalline rocks. The studies locate promising regions for exploitation of groundwater, such as fault zones and fractures, determine the water table and locate paleochannels. Methods used: Electrical Resistivity-ER, Induced Polarization-IP, Ground Penetrating Radar-GPR, electromagnetic in the Time-Domain TDEM, Electromagnetic Induction, seismic (refraction and reflection), Gamma Ray Spectrometry. Researchers:  Renato PradoVagner ElisJorge PorsaniCarlos MendonçaLiliana DiogoFrancisco Hiodo.

2) Characterization and monitoring of contaminated areas: integrated application of geophysical methods, modeling studies and inversion data in order to locate and delineate contamination plumes in landfills and oil refineries, map tanks containing toxic products, soil and groundwater contamination studies. Methods used: Electrical Resistivity-ER, Induced Polarization-IP, Ground Penetrating Radar-GPR, electromagnetic TDEM in Time-Domain and Magnetotelluric controlled-source CSAMT. Researchers: Vagner ElisRenato PradoJorge PorsaniCarlos MendonçaFrancisco Hiodo.

3) Geotechnics: The shallow geophysical projects aim to promote the integrated application of different geophysical methods, modeling studies and inversion data in order to research geomechanical problems and mapping interference networks (metal pipes, plastic and concrete) installed in the Test Site of Geophysics Rasa IAG / USP and underground cities. The studies are intended to assist in making decisions about the direction of advancement of subway tunnels, and to support the construction and maintenance of civil geotechnical works. Methods used: Electrical Resistivity-ER, Ground Penetrating Radar-GPR, Inductive Electromagnetic and Seismic Reflection High Resolution. Researchers: Jorge PorsaniRenato PradoVagner ElisLiliana Diogo.

4) Geophysics applied to mineral resources exploration: integrated application of geophysical methods, modeling and development of computer programs, aiming to improve the mineral exploration and study of sedimentary basins. Methods used: electrical resistivity-ER, induced polarization-IP, ground penetrating radar, GPR, electromagnetic in the time-TDEM domain, electromagnetic induction, seismic (refraction and reflection), gravimetry, magnetics, gamma spectrometry. Researchers: Jorge PorsaniRenato PradoVagner ElisCarlos MendonçaLiliana DiogoFrancisco HiodoRicardo TrindadeYara Marangoni.

5) Archaeological studies with shallow geophysics: integrated application of geophysical methods, modeling studies, inversion data, for mapping archaeological sites. Methods used: Electrical Resistivity-ER, Ground Penetrating Radar, GPR, electromagnetic Inductive, High-Resolution Seismic, Refraction Seismic, Magnetic and radiometric. Researchers: Jorge PorsaniRenato PradoVagner ElisCarlos MendonçaFrancisco Hiodo.

6) Data inversion: Development of algorithms and computer programs for quantitative interpretation of geophysical data. On the potential fields, the ongoing projects investigating the usefulness of reversing non-linear measurements in uncoupled determination of physical property and the source geometry. In the electrical method we are developing a formulation for inverting spontaneous potential data with application in groundwater flow studies and mineral prospecting. On the seismic methods we are developing different inversion algorithms exploiting the information of the reflected wave field, compression and shear waves for the determination of elastic parameters to geotechnical characterization, detection and characterization of fractured zones. Researchers: Carlos MendonçaJorge PorsaniRenato PradoLiliana Diogo.

Dissemination and Education Geophysics and Related Sciences: This project aims to document the dissemination actions and educational innovations conducted in post-graduate and undergraduate courses of the Department of Geophysics IAG-USP. These activities require teachers' time, involve the dissemination of the research done by the various groups, have attracted students for both undergraduate and for graduate courses. The outreach activities are directed to basic education, for professionals, students in related areas, for the elderly and the general public. The participation of graduate students, giving lectures on their research topics and acting as monitors in graduate and extension courses are also contemplated. Researchers: Eder MolinaMarcelo BianchiLiliana Diogo.