NASA Astrobiology Institute: May 2010

The NAI maintains a small fund to help support travel and accommodation costs associated with collaborations between NAI members and international colleagues in the field of astrobiology. This funding supports travel by NAI members affiliated with US. institutions to non-U.S. laboratories or field sites.

Recent Award:

The NAI has selected Drs. Dawn Cardace, from the Ames Research Center, and D'Arcy Meyer-Dombard, of the University of Illinois at Chicago, to travel to investigate "Deeply Sourced Springs of the Northern Anatolian Fault Zone: An Opportunity to Constrain Astrobiological Interpretations of Martian Surface Seep Structures and Mineralogy."

For more information:

[Source: NAI Newsletter]

The NAI once again hosted the Student Poster Competition at the Astrobiology Science Conference (AbSciCon) 2010, held in League City Texas on April 26-29, 2010. Louis Lerman and Steve Benner from the Foundation for Applied Molecular Evolution (FfAME) provided a generous contribution in support of the competition, as they did for AbSciCon2008.

Thirty posters were submitted to the competition, and four cash prizes wereawarded.

The first place prize went to Jorge Nunez, a graduate student at Arizona State University, for his poster entitled The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) and the Mars Microbeam Raman Spectrometer (MMRS): An Integrated Payload for the In-Situ Exploration of Past and Present Habitable Environments on Mars. Jorges co-authors were J. D. Farmer (advisor), R. G. Sellar, S. Douglas, K. S. Manatt, M. D. Fries, A. L. Lane, Alian Wang, and D. L.Blaney.

Second place in the competition was awarded to Jennifer Glass, a graduate student at Arizona State University for her poster Signatures of Low-Mo Ancient Ocean May be Preserved in Cyanobacterial Genomes. Jennifers co-authors were Felisa L. Wolfe-Simon, A. T. Poret-Peterson and A. D. Anbar(advisor).

The third place winner was Eva Stueeken, a graduate student at the University of Washington, for her poster Selenium Biogeochemistry as a Planetary Deep-Time Redox Proxy. Evas co-authors were Julien Foriel, B. K.Nelson, and Roger Buick(advisor).

Fourth place in the competition was awarded to undergraduate student Dyana Lucas of the Native American Research Laboratory (NARL) at The University of Montana, for her poster Evidence for Local Adaptation in Extremophilic Crenarchaeal Systems: A SSV-Sulfolobus Study. Dyanas co-authors were Manny Ceballos, and Michael Ceballos(advisor).

Congratulations to these four outstanding students for theirachievement! [Source: NAI Newsletter]