Cosmochemistry Group


The Cosmochemistry Group first worked on a Mars-related project when it used the thermoluminescence properties of martian meteorites to determine their thermal histories (Hasan et al., 1996).  Subsequently, we found objects in lunar meteorites similar to those that had been thought to be microfossils in martian meteorites and we argued that the objects were not biological in origin (Sears and Kral. 1998).

With the acquisition of the large planetary environmental simulator, that we call the Andromeda chamber, we have become interested in simulating processes occurring on Mars and have begun with determining evaporation rates for water under a variety of conditions (Moore and Sears, 2006, Sears and Chittenden, 2005, Sears and Moore, 2005).

Shortly after we began this work, we received major grant from the W. M. Keck Foundation and we opened the W. M. Keck Laboratory for Space Simulation that has its own web site.

Publications on this research