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MSRAL 2006 Convention

SLAS Regular Meeting
Friday, November 20, 2015 7:30pm
McDonnell Hall, Washington University

Curiosity, the (Robot) Martian


Valerie Fox
Washington University

The ancient rock record of our neighboring planet, Mars, holds significant clues about the planet’s watery past and the possibility of habitable environments in its early history. The Mars Science Laboratory rover, Curiosity, made a spectacular landing in August 2012. Now three years into its mission, Curiosity has discovered ancient dry stream and lake beds, and is characterizing the sedimentary stratigraphy in Gale Crater. Ms. Fox will discuss some of the more recent exploration campaigns as Curiosity has begun the ascent of Mount Sharp, the 5 km sedimentary central mountain in Gale Crater.

Valerie Fox is a PhD candidate in Earth and Planetary Science at Washington University in Saint Louis. She studies the geologic history of Mars using images and data from Mars orbiting spacecraft as well as from Mars rovers. She is also actively involved in the operational and science teams for both Opportunity and Curiosity, and with the science team for the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter’s Imaging Spectrometer. She received her Bachelor’s degree in physics from Carleton College, Minnesota in 2012 and Master’s degree from Washington University in 2014.


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