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Part One

VALLES CALDERA: The Science

2 Emmy Wins!

Best Documentary Topical - Tim Aydelott and Ylonda Viola
Best Photography - John G. Britt

3 Emmy Nominations

Best Documentary Topical - Tim Aydelott and Ylonda Viola
Best Photography - John G. Britt
Best Musical Score - Matthew Pavolaitis

Funded in part by the National Science Foundation and narrated by the impeccable Ali Macgraw, this one-hour show began airing nationally on PBS in January 2013.  CLICK HERE To request this program from your local PBS station

Our Premier Screening was held Oct 4th, 2012 in Albuquerque, New  Mexico.  The event was sponsored by New Mexico EPSCoR and screened at  the Lockheed Martin DynaTheater at The New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science in Albuquerque, NM

Part One of the trilogy succinctly explores scientific research into climate change being conducted on the Preserve as well as the geology, the geologic forces that formed the Caldera super volcano (with 3 D animations of eruptions), the current hydrology within the Caldera and the effects of fire in the region. 

The program will cover three major topic areas during the course of  the one-hour documentary;

1. Geologic history. The Valles Caldera is the location that inspired Volcanologist Robert L. Smith  to develop the theory of Resurgent Domes – we interview him at his home  in Sacramento, CA. This geology segment includes scientists in the field  discussing the geology, subsurface geologic reasons for the super  volcano, volcanic resources found within the Caldera, and the importance  of the Caldera in the history of geologic science. The Valles Caldera is the key model for Caldera theory worldwide and was  instrumental in the development of plate tectonic theory.

2. Current research. This segment focuses on the research being  conducted by the New Mexico EPSCoR on climate change in the Caldera.  What does real time monitoring of precipitation levels, stream flow and  water chemistry in the Caldera tell us about current and future water  resources in New Mexico? How do the scientists conducting the research  use the data collected to analyze potential climate change in a regional  context?

3. Fire Impacts. During the filming of Part One of this trilogy the Los Conchas fire  broke out burning 30% of the Valles Caldera.  Our film crew was able to  obtain incredible before and after comparison shots as well as interview  scientists collecting never before seen data sets just weeks after what  was at the time the largest, fastest growing fire in New Mexico’s  history. What impacts did the Las Conchas Fire of June 2011  have on research projects in the Caldera? Do we see the imprint in the  data? How did the largest, fastest growing fire in New Mexico history  impact the wildlife resources in the Caldera? Is there data available  that will help determine the future course and impact of fire in the  region?

The Valles Caldera offers crucial insights into water and land  management, plate tectonics and climate change shedding new light on  important issues facing not just the region but also the world.