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Lijun Liu

Research Interests

Prof. Liu has a broad interest in the temporal evolution of solid Earth. He takes an interdisciplinary approach to study the history of subduction and mantle convection, and their interactions with Earth's surface. Particular questions Prof. Liu tries to answer include what drives the long-term, large-scale continental vertical motion; how could orogeny be related to mantle dynamics; to what extent major volcanic eruptions are due to abnormal subduction processes. In practice, he applies forward and inverse data-assimilation methods to the construction of geodynamic simulations, using observational data from various fields.


  • Ph.D. Geophysics, California Institute of Technology, 2010

Courses Taught

  • GEOL 107: Physical Geology
  • GEOL 450: Probing the Earth's Interior
  • GEOL 552: Geodynamics

Additional Campus Affiliations

Professor, Geology

Recent Publications

Cui, Q., Zhou, Y., Liu, L., Gao, Y., Li, G., & Zhang, S. (2023). The topography of the 660-km discontinuity beneath the Kuril-Kamchatka: Implication for morphology and dynamics of the northwestern Pacific slab. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 602, Article 117967.

Li, S., Foulger, G. R., Suo, Y., Zhao, M., Ding, W., & Liu, L. (2023). Seafloor tectonics in Northeast Atlantic Ocean and South China Sea: Preface. Gondwana Research, 120, 1-3.

Li, S., Liu, L., Suo, Y., Li, X., Zhou, J., Jiang, Z., Guan, H., Sun, G., Yu, L., Liu, P., Dai, L., Li, X., Chen, L., Zhao, Y., Wang, Y., & Xu, B. (2023). 碳构造: 一个地球系统科学新范式. Kexue Tongbao/Chinese Science Bulletin, 68(4), 309-338.

Liu, J., Li, S., Cao, X., Dong, H., Suo, Y., Jiang, Z., Zhou, J., Li, X., Zhang, R., Liu, L., & Foulger, G. R. (2023). Back-Arc Tectonics and Plate Reconstruction of the Philippine Sea-South China Sea Region Since the Eocene. Geophysical Research Letters, 50(5), Article e2022GL102154.

Liu, L., Liu, L., Morgan, J. P., Xu, Y. G., & Chen, L. (2023). New constraints on Cenozoic subduction between India and Tibet. Nature communications, 14(1), Article 1963.

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