LPI Seminar Series

2021

The LPI Seminar Series brings prominent scientists to the LPI to present on a broad array of scientific disciplines that advance our understanding of the solar system. The seminar series, which began in September 1969, has brought many notable contributors from numerous research and academic institutions to the LPI. Seminars are typically held on Thursdays from 3:30-4:30 p.m. CST, but dates and times are subject to change. All seminars will be held virtually until further notice.

Sign up for LPI Seminars to receive email notifications of upcoming seminars and details on how to join the virtual seminar. For more information, please contact Prajkta Mane (pmane@lpi.usra.edu) and Sean O’Hara (sohara@lpi.usra.edu).

See also the Rice University Department of Physics and Astronomy Colloquia and the Department of Earth Science Colloquia pages for other space science talks in the Houston area.


January 2021

Thursday, January 7, 2021 - Virtual, 3:30 PM
Craig Hardgrove, Arizona State University
Searching for Lunar Water with LunaH-Map: Tiny Interplanetary Spacecraft With Big Science and Exploration Goals

LunaH-Map is a new type of NASA planetary science mission manifested for launch on Space Launch System Artemis-1. Following in the footsteps of the MarCO cubesat's successful interplanetary mission, the LunaH-Map spacecraft is a miniaturized, shoebox-sized, interplanetary spacecraft that will use a small ion propulsion system to navigate into lunar orbit and a neutron spectrometer to map enrichments of hydrogen across the lunar South Pole. The maps produced by LunaH-Map will help constrain the amount of hydrogen within permanently shadowed regions, which will inform our understanding of sources and sinks for polar volatile deposits, as well as planning future lunar exploration missions. To R.S.V.P., visit http://ow.ly/JW5b50CZI4h

Thursday, January 14, 2021 - Virtual, 3:30 PM
David A. Kring, Lunar and Planetary Institute
A subterranean hydrothermal system and microbial nursery beneath the floor of the Chicxulub impact crater

An expedition sponsored by the International Ocean Discovery Program and International Continental Scientific Drilling Program recovered rock core from the peak ring of the ~180 km-diameter Chicxulub impact crater. Mineral assemblages in the core indicate the crater hosted a substantial and long-lived hydrothermal system. Furthermore, sulfur isotope compositions of pyrite framboids that precipitated in the hydrothermal system indicate it was inhabited by sulphate-reducing thermophilic organisms. The findings support the impact origin of life hypothesis, which posits prebiotic chemistry and the early evolution of life occurred in similar impact-generated systems during the Hadean on Earth and potentially in other planetary systems where similar hydrothermal systems are generated. To R.S.V.P., visit https://bit.ly/3ouPVuT


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