About Us Science Meetings Education Resources Analysis Groups The Moon

Science at LPI

The science at the Lunar and Planetary Institute is focused on the formation, evolution, and current state of our solar system through analysis of data and samples obtained through NASA’s long history of missions and exploration.  Our current major research topics include the origin and evolution of the early solar system; petrology and geochemistry of planetary materials and volatiles; planetary interiors, volcanism, and tectonism; and impact cratering.

  Research Foci

Lunar Science and Exploration

Resources to support the scientific research and exploration strategy of the Moon

Center for Lunar Science and Exploration

The Center for Lunar Science and Exploration is part of the NASA Lunar Science Institute and is designed to investigate lunar science issues, develop strategies for future lunar exploration, and train a new community of talent that will be needed to assure the success of the Constellation Program.

  Staff Highlights Archive


D. Kring attended NASA’s “Human-Assisted Mars Sample Return With Human Spaceflight Experts” meeting.  ISS Conference Facility, Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX.  September 2014.


J. Besserer, F. Nimmo, M. A. Wieczorek, R. C. Weber, W.  S. Kiefer, P.  J. McGovern, J.  C. Andrews-Hanna, D. E. Smith, and M. T. Zuber (2014) “GRAIL gravity constraints on the vertical and lateral density structure of the lunar crust,” Geophysical Research Letters 41, 5771-5777.

J. C. Andrews-Hanna, J. Besserer, J. W. Head III, C. J. A. Howett, W.  S. Kiefer, P.  J. Lucey, P. J. McGovern, H. J. Melosh, G. A. Neumann, R. J. Phillips, P. M. Schenk, D. E. Smith, S. C. Solomon, and M. T. Zuber (2014) Structure and evolution of the lunar Procellarum region as revealed by GRAIL gravity data, Nature 514, 68-71.

T. Platz, P. K. Byrne, M. Massironi, and H. Hiesinger (2014) [url= http://sp.lyellcollection.org/content/early/2014/09/16/SP401.22.abstract}“Volcanism and tectonism across the inner solar system: an overview[/url],” Geological Society, London, Special Publications, first published doi 10.1144/SP401.22.


N. LeCorvec advised Griffin Glen, a high school student internship. An introduction to research through the analysis of magma chamber behavior in volcanoes.  September 11 to September 22.



LPI Summer Intern Program
Experience cutting-edge research with LPI or JSC scientist mentors

Lunar Exploration Summer Intern Program
Work with a scientist mentor to integrate science priorities with NASA's lunar exploration initiatives

Positions Available
Scientist positions available at the Lunar and Planetary Institute

Student Research Grants
Annual awards for research funding in the planetary sciences