Recently in the Astrogeology Category

Reproducing the large Earth/Mars mass ratio requires a strong mass depletion in solids within the protoplanetary disk between 1 and 3 AU.

The long-term carbon cycle is vital for maintaining liquid water oceans on rocky planets due to the negative climate feedbacks involved in silicate weathering.

Is Iron A Biological Element?

Think of an object made of iron: An I-beam, a car frame, a nail. Now imagine that half of the iron in that object owes its existence to bacteria living two and a half billion years ago.

Planet Earth is situated in what astronomers call the Goldilocks Zone -- a sweet spot in a solar system where a planet's surface temperature is neither too hot nor too cold.

Planets with volcanic activity are considered better candidates for life than worlds without such heated internal goings-on.

Understanding the collisional properties of ice is important for understanding both the early stages of planet formation and the evolution of planetary ring systems.

We present an inversion method based on Bayesian analysis to constrain the interior structure of terrestrial exoplanets, in the form of chemical composition of the mantle and core size.

How do you make an Earth-like planet? The "test kitchen" of Earth has given us a detailed recipe, but it wasn't clear whether other planetary systems would follow the same formula.

A new study is helping to answer a longstanding question that has recently moved to the forefront of earth science: Did our planet make its own water through geologic processes, or did water come to us via icy comets from the far reaches of the solar system?

Applications due: February 15, 2013

In this intense multidisciplinary summer course, June 9 - July 12, explore the coevolution of the Earth and its biosphere, with emphasis on how microbial processes affect the environment and leave imprints on the rock record. Participants get hands-on experience in cutting-edge geobiological techniques including molecular biology, bioinformatics, geochemistry, petrology and sedimentology, and work in research groups to solve relevant questions. The course will involve a field trip to the Great Salt Lake and southern Wyoming. Lab work will be conducted at the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, Colorado, USC/Caltech/JPL in the Los Angeles area and the USC Wrigley Institute on Catalina Island. The 2013 course is open to students and researchers at any level, although we give preference to graduate students in their early to mid years of study.

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