Steve at Medicine Lake volcano

Dr. Stephen C. Kuehn (Steve)
Research Assistant Professor
Manager, Electron Microprobe Laboratory

Department of Physical Science
Concord University Box F20
PO Box 1000
1000 Vermillion St
Athens, WV 24712

Office location: Science 106
Office phone: 304-384-6322

Vitae (Sept 2012)


GEOL 101 - Earth Processes and Environment - course website - Last taught: 2015 Spring
GEOL 375 - Igneous, Sedimentary, and Metamorphic Petrology  - course website - Last taught: 2015 Spring
GEOL 385 - Structural Geology (team-taught with Dr. Joe Allen) - course website - Last taught: 2010 Fall
GEOL/CHEM/PHYS 420: Electron Microscopy and X-ray Microanalysis - course website - Spring 2012

Research Interests

                          Caldera as seen from Paulina Peak
Newberry Caldera, Oregon, USA


  • Tephrochronology, the use of volcanic ash (tephra) layers to provide correlations between sites and age control - including:
    • analytical methods for obtaining geochemical data (e.g. electron microprobe, ICP-MS), including the development of new procedures and new standard reference materials
    • cryptotephra (locating and identifying trace volcanic ash that does not occur as visible layers), especially in glacial ice
    • applications (e.g. Quaternary geology, climate change, paleolimnology, archaeology, paleoseismology)
  • Volcanology & petrology, especially of pyroclastic rocks - including:
    • Proximal stratigraphy and geochemistry
    • Eruption and depositional mechanisms (from deposit characteristics such as particle size variations and thickness distributions)
    • Dispersal patterns related to wind
  • Selected field localities:
    • Newberry Volcano, Oregon
    • Summer Lake and Fossil Lake, Oregon (Great Basin region)
    • central Alaska
    • Mt. St. Helens, Washington

    Potential research projects for students

    Compositionally and texturally bimodal airfall
    tephra at Newberry Volcano, Oregon -
    Probably related to the most recent
    caldera-forming eruption

Professional History and Education

Student Projects Supervised

  • 2013-2014: Hostetler, Addison - Tephra & Quaternary faulting, Summer Lake, OR
  • 2013: Barbery, Albert - Petrology of mafic dikes, Colorado
  • 2012-2013: Kalteyer, Donna (Teye) - Tephra in the Carp Lake WA cores revisited
  • 2011-2012: Pritt, Joey - Mt. St. Helens Set C tephras
  • 2008-2009: Atkins, Chris - Cryptotephra in the Mt. Logan PR Col ice core (thesis)
  • 2004-2005: Preppernau, Charles - The Pumice Flat tephra of Newberry Volcano

Publications, Theses, and Field Guides

  • Zander, P.D., Kaufman, D.S., Kuehn, S.C., Wallace, K.L., and Anderson, R.S., 2013, Early and late Holocene glacial fluctuations and tephrostratigraphy, Cabin Lake, Alaska: Journal of Quaternary Science, 28, 8, pp. 761-771, doi: 10.1002/jqs.2671.
  • Lowe, D.J., Pearce, N.J.G., Jorgensen, M.A., Kuehn, S.C., Tryon, C.A., and Hayward, C.A., in review, Correlating tephras and cryptotephras using glass compositional analyses and statistical methods, a review: Quaternary Science Reviews (invited).
  • Pyne-O'Donnell, S.D.F, Hughes, P.D.M., Froese, D.G., Jensen, B.J.L., Kuehn, S.C., and eight others, 2012, High-precision ultra-distal Holocene tephrochronology in North America, Quaternary Science Reviews (rapid communication) 52, pp. 6-11, doi:10.1016/j.quascirev.2012.07.024.
  • Kuehn, S.C., Froese, D.G., and Shane, P.A.R., 2011, The INTAV intercomparison of electron-beam microanalysis of glass by tephrochronology laboratories, results and recommendations: Quaternary International. doi:10.1016/j.quaint.2011.08.022. - Project Website - Manuscript and Supplemental Files
  • Kuehn, S.C. and Froese, D.G., 2010, Tephra from ice - A simple method to routinely mount, polish, and quantitatively analyze sparse fine particles: Microscopy and Microanalysis Article  online - Coordinate transform spreadsheet
  • Kuehn, S.C. and Negrini, R.N., 2010, A 250,000-year record of Cascade Range pyroclastic volcanism from late Pleistocene lacustrine sediments near Summer Lake, Oregon, USA: Geosphere. Article online   Supplemental figures with captions plus captions for the supplemental tables: High-resolution version (35 MB)  Screen-resolution version (3.3 MB).
  • Lacelle, D., St-Jean, M., Lauriol, B., Clark, I.D., Froese, D., Kuehn, S.C., Zazula, G., and Lewkowicz, A., 2009, Burial history of a relict perennial snowbank body and vegetation by the Dawson tephra (25,300 14C years BP) near Red Creek, Ogilvie Mountains, central Yukon, Canada: Quaternary Science Reviews. Article online
  • Kuehn, S.C., Froese, D.G. Carrara. P.E., Foit, F.F., Pearce, N.J., and Rotheisler, P., 2009, The latest Pleistocene Glacier Peak tephra set revisited and revised: major- and trace-element characterization, distribution, and a new chronology in western North America: Quaternary Research, vol. 71, pp. 201-216. Article online. Supplemental materials: Fig S1 (location map), Table S1 (tephra localities), Table S2 (spreadsheet containing microprobe data), Table S3 (radiocarbon dates), Supplemental references and bibliography.
  • Jensen, J., Kuehn, S.C., Donnelly-Nolan, J., and Chitwood, L., 2006, Geology of Newberry Volcano, Central Oregon: Guidebook to the Volcanological Society of Sacramento 2006 field trip. Trip itinerary and references
  • Kuehn S.C. and Foit, F.F., 2006, Correlation of widespread Holocene and Pleistocene tephra layers from Newberry Volcano, Oregon, using glass compositions and numerical methods: Quaternary International, vol. 148, No. 1, pp. 113-137 (May 2006). Article online (linked via DOI) - correctly reproduced Fig 1
    Marias Pass
                                tephra beds
    Glacier Peak and Mt. St. Helens tephras
    in laminated lake sediments at Marias Pass, MT
  • Kuehn, S.C., 2002, Stratigraphy, distribution, and geochemistry of the Newberry volcano tephras: Washington State University Ph.D. dissertation, 701 pages. Complete dissertation online
  • Kuehn, S.C. and Foit, F.F., 2001, Updated tephra stratigraphy at Summer Lake, Oregon, a sub-basin of pluvial Lake Chewaucan, in Negrini, R., Pezzopane, S., and Badger, T., eds., Quaternary Studies near Summer Lake, Oregon: Guidebook for the Friends of the Pleistocene Ninth Annual Pacific Northwest Cell Field Trip. pp. SK1-SK9. Article online  (102kB PDF)
  • Jensen, R.A., Chitwood, L.A., Kuehn, S.C., Donnelly-Nolan, J.M., Reynolds, R.W., Connolly, T.J., Castro, J., Linneman, S., and Claeyssens, 2000, Newberry field trip guide, in Jensen, R.A. and Chitwood, L.A., eds., What's New at Newberry Volcano, Oregon: Guidebook for the Friends of the Pleistocene Eighth Annual Pacific Northwest Cell Field Trip. pp. 5-26.
  • Kuehn, S.C. and Foit, F.F., 2000, Silicic tephras of Newberry volcano, in Jensen, R.A. and Chitwood, L.A., eds., What's New at Newberry Volcano, Oregon: Guidebook for the Friends of the Pleistocene Eighth Annual Pacific Northwest Cell Field Trip. pp. 135-163. Lower resolution article online  (4.8 MB PDF) Higher resolution article online  (10.1 MB PDF)
  • Kuehn, S.C., Davis, L., and Keatts, K., 1999, Laboratory Exercises in Physical Geology, 5th edition: Pearson Custom Publishing, 248 p.Kuehn, S.C., Davis, L., and Keatts, K., 1996, Laboratory Exercises in Physical Geology, 4th edition: Burgess International Group (now part of Pearson-Prentice Hall), 229 p.
  • Kuehn, S.C., 1995, The Olympic-Wallowa lineament, Hite fault system, and Columbia River Basalt Group stratigraphy in northeast Umatilla County, Oregon: Washington State University M.S. thesis, 170 pages.  Complete thesis online: HTML or PDF (10.2 MB)
  • Kuehn, S.C., 1992, The geochemistry of Mount Rainier volcano, Washington: University of Puget Sound, B.S. thesis, 112 pages.

Selected and Recent Conference Presentations and Abstracts

Multiple tephra beds in Pleistocene lake sediments
at Summer Lake, Oregon
  • Kuehn, S.C., Bursik, M.I., and Pouget, S., 2013, Improved integration and discoverability of tephra data for multidisciplinary applications: AGU Fall Meeting
    Conference Poster
  • Hostetler, A. and Kuehn, S.C., 2013, Tephrochronology of faulted, fossil-bearing, Holocene to Pliocene sediments near Summer Lake, Oregon: AGU Fall Meeting   Conference Poster
  • Barbery, A., Facemyer, C., Allen, J.L., And Kuehn, S.C., 2013 Petrography and Geochemistry of Mafic-Intermediate Dikes from the Northern Sawatch Range, Colorado: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. Vol. 45, No. 7, p.583 Abstract  -  Conference Poster
  • Matchen, D.L., Kuehn, S.C., And Chandler, G., 2013 Preliminary Evaluation of an Unusual Limestone-Pebble Conglomerate from the Upper Hinton (Mississippian) Formation of Southern West Virginia, U.S.A Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. Vol. 45, No. 7, p.137 Abstract
  • Kuehn, S.C., Kalteyer, D.A., and Negrini, R.M., 2013, New tephras from old sites:
    Examples from Carp Lake, Washington, and Summer Lake, Oregon, USA: CANQUA-CGRG Conference, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Aug 18-22.

    Abstract and Presentation
  • Kalteyer, D.A. and Kuehn, S.C., 2013, Improved tephrochronology for the 125,000 year record from Carp Lake, Washington, USA: New geochemistry, more tephra beds, and a new age model; Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 45, No. 5, p.4. Abstract  -  Conference Poster
  • Kuehn, S.C., 2012, The topographic sand box, a tool for improved understanding and visualization of topographic maps: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. vol. 44, No. 7, p.101 (poster 29-176) Conference poster
  • Kuehn, S.C. and Allen, J.A., 2012, Microanalysis across the curriculum - integrating electron microprobe and micro-XRF instruments into undergraduate teaching and research; Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. vol. 44, No. 7, p.101  (poster 29-172) Conference poster
  • Kuehn, S.C, 2012, Secondary standards and sodium-loss: results and recommendations from a large interlaboratory comparison of four natural glasses. Microanalytical Reference Materials 2012, Golden, CO, May 15-17.
  • Pritt, J.J. and Kuehn, S.C., 2012, Better Understanding the Early Eruptive History of Mt. St. Helens through Improved Microanalysis of Tephra Glasses, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 44, No. 4, p. 6.  Abstract  -  Conference Poster
  • Kuehn, S.C, Froese, D.G., and Shane, P,  2011, Assessing microanalytical performance using secondary standards: Results of an electron probe interlaboratory comparison using four natural volcanic glasses. Microscopy & Microanalysis 2011, Nashville, TN. Abstract  -  Conference Poster
  • Kuehn, S.C, Froese, D.G., Shane, P, Davies, S, and Alloway, B, 2010, The INTAV intercomparison of tephrochonology laboratories: International Field Conference and Workshop on Tephrochronology, Volcanism and Human Activity, Kirishima, Japan. Abstract
  • Froese, D.G., Kuehn, S.C, Fisher, D., Zdanowicz, C, Atkins, C, Dunning, H, and Jensen, B, 2010, Establishing independent age models for ice cores using tephrochronology: International Field Conference and Workshop on Tephrochronology, Volcanism and Human Activity, Kirishima, Japan.
  • Kuehn, S.C., Froese, D.G., Pearce, N.J.G., and Foit, F.F., 2009, ID3506, a New/Old Lipari Obsidian Standard for Characterization of Natural Glasses and Tephrochronology: Eos Transactions of the AGU, Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract V31E-2010. Abstract Poster
  • Schupack, B.B., Miller, G.H., Kuehn, S.C., 2009, Pushing the Limits of Volcanic Cryptotephra Detection in the High Arctic, Spitsbergen, Svalbard: GSA Abstracts with Programs, V. 41, No. 7, Abstract No. 159929. Abstract
  • Kuehn, S.C., 2005, New Details From The Tephra Stratigraphy At Summer Lake, Oregon, A Sub-Basin Of Pluvial Lake Chewaucan: GSA Abstracts with Programs Vol. 37, No. 7. Abstract -Slides (1.5MB PDF) -
  • Kuehn, S.C., Preppernau, C., 2005, Pumice Flat tephra of Newberry volcano, Oregon: A mixed-magma Plinian eruption: GSA Abstracts with Programs Vol. 37, No. 4. (with student co-author) )Poster  (web-resolution graphics - 788 KB PDF), Poster (high-resolution graphics - 15 MB PDF)
  • Kuehn, S.C., Foit, F.F., 2003, Distal correlation of Newberry volcano tephras and updated tephra stratigraphy for the Summer Lake sub basin of pluvial Lake Chewaucan: XVI INQUA Congress Programs with Abstracts, p. 182. Poster  (423kB PDF)
  • Kuehn, S.C., 2003, Plinian Newberry pumice and related eruptions of Newberry volcano, central Oregon, USA: Eos Transactions of the AGU, 84(46), Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract V42B-0354. Poster  (1.5 MB PDF)
  • Kuehn, S.C., 1997, Geochemistry and stratigraphy of the tephras of Newberry volcano, central Oregon: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 29, no. 6, p. A419. Abstract - Poster

  • Tephra in core from
    Summer Lake, OR
  • Kuehn, S.C., Hooper, P.R., Thiessen, R.L., Watkinson, A.J., 1996, Structures in the Columbia River basalts associated with the Olympic-Wallowa lineament and Hite fault, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 28, no. 5, p. 83. Abstract - Poster
  • Kuehn, S.C., Hooper, P.R., Eggers, A.A., Kerrick, C, 1995, Petrogenetic constraints at Mount Rainier volcano, Washington: EOS Transactions of the American Geophysical Union, v. 76, no. 46, p. F651. Abstract and Poster
  • Kuehn, S.C., Hooper, P.R. Eggers, A.A., 1993, Mount Rainier, a decade volcano: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 25, no. 5, p. 65.


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Content revised 12-January-2015