Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences News

Emery Part of New NASA Mission ‘Lucy’ to Explore Early Solar System

UT’s Joshua Emery is part of a NASA mission that could provide new insight into one of the earliest eras in the history of our solar system. The project, named Lucy, is one of two recently selected by NASA to be formulated into missions. Emery will serve on the science team for Lucy.

Nature Features McSween’s Involvement in Mars 2020 Plan

Nature, the weekly journal of science, recently featured one of NASA’s current projects, which involves building a rover that it hopes will bring back signs of life from Mars. Harry “Hap” McSween, Chancellor’s Professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, is a part of the team working on the $2.4 billion project to bring back a rock from Mars, which could take place as early as July 2020.

Student Tests HoloLens for NASA, Gets Closer Look at Mars Surface

Every day, Rachel Kronyak walks around the surface of the planet Mars, examining a rock or getting a closer look at a butte framing the horizon. A doctoral student in geology at UT, Kronyak is among a small set of research scientists worldwide testing the use of an augmented reality headset to see how it can help NASA determine whether Mars could support life.

Emery Co-Authors Study on Detection of Water on Asteroid Named Psyche

Professor Josh Emery has helped detect water on Psyche, the largest metallic asteroid in the solar system. The asteroid is the target of a proposed NASA mission. The study, published in the Astronomical Journal under the auspices of the US Geological Survey and NASA, provides evidence for water-rich minerals on Psyche, an asteroid that is 186 miles across and is made of almost pure nickel-iron metal.