GSA Connects 2021 in Portland, Oregon

Paper No. 146-1
Presentation Time: 8:05 AM


BISHOP, Janice, Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute & NASA-Ames, 189 Bernardo Ave, Suite 200, Mountain View, CA 94043-5139

Understanding the geology and mineralogy of the Moon, Mars, and other solar system bodies benefits from analog studies of our home planet. Grove Karl Gilbert explored and documented geologic processes across many regions of the western US that were subsequently used as testbeds for lunar and martian studies. His interest and insights in planetary geology paved the way for this to become the broad field it is today. I am honored and thrilled to be receiving the 2021 Gilbert Award. I have been fascinated with the stars and planets in the sky as long as I can remember and was torn between studying physics or chemistry in college. I took plenty of each at Stanford and a spectroscopy course in chemistry secured my interest in that major. Through a volunteer program, I met the Dean of Earth Science who regaled us with stories of geologic field trips that enticed me into a co-term MS program in Earth Science. This led me to aqueous geochemistry with George Parks and remote sensing with Ron Lyon. I recall being intrigued by infrared photographs, the unwieldy field spectrometers we used back then, and the beautiful colors imparted by metal impurities in minerals. I continued grad school at Brown University where I completed a PhD in chemistry with John Edwards, a hobby mineralogist, with a joint thesis in planetary geology with Carlé Pieters. A NASA Fellowship helped soften concerns from the university about a joint thesis. Brown afforded multiple opportunities to meet planetary colleagues from around the world including from the DLR in Berlin, where I went for a postdoc supported by the Humboldt Foundation. I received an NRC Fellowship at NASA Ames and returned to the SF Bay Area where I grew up. I have remained at the SETI Institute and NASA Ames, where I love being a science detective, picking out clues from the geologic (or martian) past through the mineral record. Understanding the chemistry and physics of minerals and their spectral features has enabled me to work toward identifying them with confidence on planetary bodies. Throughout my career I have been lucky to balance field work, lab experiments, theory, and remote sensing to gain an understanding of the spectral signatures of minerals and rocks. My field work in far-flung locations has provided unparalleled opportunities to view geologic processes, as described so many years ago by Gilbert himself.