Thorsten Becker

University of Southern California
Los Angeles, California

Thorsten Becker is a geophysicist with broad interests in geodynamics and seismology trying to unravel the interactions between mantle convection, surface geology, and Earth evolution. His research involves combining field, laboratory, and numerical approaches into dynamical models, focusing on the physics of plate tectonics, from grain-scale deformation to plate-scale flow. Recent research projects include work on seismic anisotropy, mantle heat transport and the mechanics of the interactions between subduction and continental dynamics.

Thorsten obtained an MSc in Physics from Frankfurt University, a PhD in geophysics at Harvard, and spent two years as a post-doc at Scripps/UCSD before joining USC in 2004. There, he has advised three summer undergraduate interns, five Msc and PhD students, and three post-docs besides his current team of five PhD students. His teaching interests include Engineering Geology, Geophysics, Mechanics of Lithospheric Deformation, Quantitative Methods in the Earth Sciences, Numerical Geodynamics, The Mantle System, and the Solid Earth Research and Teaching Environment (SEATREE).