The lab’s research is driven by the underlying goal of understanding the presence and preservation of biosignatures within planetary environments. We are currently investigating multiple Mars analog sites, from silica sinters and acid salt lakes to ancient deposits in the Dry Valleys of Antarctica, all with distinctive features that offer insights into what aqueous environments may have been like on the Red Planet a few billion years ago. Current projects focus on how life survives in extreme depositional environments, the persistence of lipid biomarkers over ancient timescales, and the ways in which biology affects patterns of mineralization. We’re also involved in the implementation of planetary exploration, analyzing data from current spacecraft and devising instrumentation for future missions.
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