Exploring Mars

Mastcam view from the Curiosity rover on sol 1589 looking from Vera Rubin ridge to the stratigraphy ahead (NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

We examine the biggest questions in Mars history. Why did a once-watery world become a cold desert? What processes control the evolution of past and present surface climate? Did Mars, like Earth, develop life and does that life still exist on Mars today? Current projects include:

  • MRO/CRISM and other remote sensing analyses of hydrated minerals in Mars ancient terrains
  • Mars Science Laboratory understanding volatile elements (H, Cl, S, C) in the rock record, sand dunes, and rover path planning
  • Mars 2020: Co-I on Mastcam-Z and SHERLOC instruments
  • Evolution of the Mars polar caps
  • Modeling evolution of Mars volatiles and climate change