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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

Ice frozen under Mars’ surface offers major resource to aid future settlements


Frozen water is hiding beneath the dust-covered surface of Mars, and scientist Ali Bramson wants to find it. She sees a chance to both sustain future human explorers and answer questions about the red planet’s climate. Bramson, a Purdue University assistant professor of planetary science, was part of recent research to determine the location and depth of the subsurface ice. The results of the NASA Subsurface Water Ice Mapping (SWIM) project were published in Nature Astronomy.

Computer Simulations Suggest Martian Moons Were Separated at Birth More Than a Billion Years Ago


The Red Planet’s two tiny moons—Phobos and Deimos—could have formed after an ancient collision, according to new research. It’s an intriguing possibility, but not everyone is convinced by the evidence. David Minton, planetary professor at Purdue, is cited in this article by Gizmodo.

The LPI Announces the Recipients of the 2021 Career Development Award


The Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI) is pleased to announce the ten recipients of this year’s Career Development Award. The award is given to graduate students who have submitted a first-author abstract to present at the virtual 52nd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (LPSC). Two of the ten 2021 recipients are from Purdue University: James Haber and Riley McGlasson.

What a Lake in Turkey Can Tell Us about Mars


On February 18, 2021, the Perseverance rover is scheduled to make a historic landing in Jezero Crater on Mars. The rover will survey the area and collect rock samples to send back to Earth. Even though no human has set foot inside the crater, researchers have some ideas of what to expect thanks to a similar landscape on Earth: Lake Salda.

New era of Mars exploration begins as craft nears Red Planet


A new era of Mars exploration will begin Monday with the expected arrival of the United Arab Emirates' Hope spacecraft in the vicinity of the Red Planet -- the first of three such arrivals planned for February. Tense moments await all three missions because reaching the planet is only a first step in a complex series of maneuvers to either gain a precise, intended orbit or land on the surface, said Briony Horgan, a NASA Perseverance team scientist.

All Departmental News

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