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Research Areas


Atmospheric Sciences

We study extreme weather, climate change, and their impacts on both ecosystems and modern society.

Testing the water

Environmental Geoscience

We use biology, chemistry, geology, and physics to understand how the Earth System supports such a diversity of life and how human behavior is impacting this system.

Geodata Science Initiative

Data science is the fourth and the newest paradigm of science. In Geodata Science Initiative, we conduct transdisciplinary research, merging or articulating EAPS subject matters with technical areas in data science: statistical and machine learning methods and models, algorithms for the models and methods, and computational environments for data analysis.

Mountain ranges

Geology and Geophysics

We study the processes that shape our planet, from the building of mountains and oil-bearing sedimentary basins, to the flow of warm rocks and cold glaciers, to the triggering of earthquakes.

Spacecraft mission

Planetary Science

We study the evolution of the solar system and how planets evolve over time due to impacts, tectonics, and atmospheric processes, with an eye to the potential for past and future habitability.

Research News

Ask a Scientist: Dr. Michelle Thompson discusses NASA's OSIRIS-REx


Today the world watches and waits with great anticipation to see if the NASA OSIRIS-REx Mission can collect samples from an asteroid, Bennu, that is flying by.  The mission to Bennu began in August of 2018 with the goal of collecting samples and bringing them back to Earth for scientists to study.  Because the mission began two years ago, today may be the first you are hearing about this marvel of space innovation so we have asked Dr. Michelle Thompson of the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences at Purdue University to help answer questions.  She runs the LEAPS Lab at Purdue University, has worked directly with the team on the OSIRIS-Rex Mission, is currently studying samples from the Apollo Mission.

We could slow climate change by dimming the sun. But should we?


Dr. Daniel Cziczo, head of the department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at Purdue University, tells the publication Digital Trends about the pros and cons of a controversial geoengineering scheme that could reduce the amount of sunlight hitting the earth.

Full Steam Ahead Podcast Episode 74 – Purdue’s Connection to NASA’s Perseverance Mars Rover Mission


Associate Professor of Planetary Science Briony Horgan knew she loved rocks and space while in college, but it was after reading some books by astronomer Carl Sagan that really inspired her to pursue a career in planetary science. Following her arrival at Purdue University in 2014, Horgan joined the Curiosity rover mission team in 2016 exploring the environment on Mars. And following a presentation by Horgan on the Jezero crater on Mars, NASA selected this location as a landing spot for the Perseverance rover mission to search for possible signs of life in this region on Mars. On the latest episode of Full Steam Ahead: A Podcast About Purdue, FOX59’s Adam Bartels talks to Horgan about her passion for space exploration, her involvement in the NASA Mars rover missions, her hopes for these explorations, and more!

Remembering Jay Melosh, Planetary Scientist


Dr. Jay Melosh, University Distinguished Professor of the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences passed away on Sept. 11, 2020. A memorial was held virtually and in person at the Slayter Center for Performing Arts on October 13, 2020 from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm EST.

ISGC fellowship awarded to EAPS graduate student who works with Apollo Mission lunar samples


James McFadden, Purdue University graduate student, has earned an Indiana Space Grant Consortium (INSGC) Fellowship for the 2020-21 academic year.  The INSGC is part of the National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program that works to carry out education, research, and public outreach in STEM related to space, aeronautics, aviation, and Earth system science. 

All Departmental News

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