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April 11, 2022

Every year scientists at the Astrogeology Science Center gear-up for the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, where we share our work and new discoveries about the Solar System.

The Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (LPSC) was held March 7-11, 2022, in The Woodlands, Texas.  Astrogeology Science Center (ASC) scientists had a wonderful time connecting, collaborating, and sharing their findings with other researchers. LPSC also presents opportunities to hear about updates from NASA research programs and update our NASA partners with our progress in building a strong future in planetary data infrastructure, terrestrial analog research, and planetary geologic mapping.

In January 2022, ASC contributed thirty-two abstracts to the conference as either lead or co-author, and followed up with oral or poster presentations throughout the week of the conference. The conference was hybrid this year, and ASC researchers presented in a variety of formats in-person and virtually.

Early Career Award

Our very own Dr. Kristen Bennett was among five scientists to receive a NASA Scientist Early Career Award (ECA). As part of this event, Dr. Bennett gave a plenary talk on research she’s led for the Glen Torridon campaign for the Mars Curiosity Rover.

According to NASA,

  • “The goal of the ECA program is to advance the research and professional development of exceptional early-career scientists by granting up to $200,000 dollars to each of the principal investigators (PIs).
  • In the PI role, Dr. Bennett will develop her leadership and mentoring skills, support students, and provide tools for increasing diversity and inclusion in the planetary science community.

 “Dr. Bennett is an excellent scientist and mentor. The upcoming planetary scientists who work with her will be in capable hands,” said Dr. Justin Hagerty, ASC’s Science Center Director.  “She has also demonstrated a commitment to going the extra mile for diversity, equity and inclusion, with the goal of opening more doors in planetary science for underrepresented groups.” 

You can read Dr. Bennett’s abstract to learn what she and Curiosity rover team have discovered while exploring the Glen Torridon area on Mars.

The cutting edge of planetary science

Science is more than just the big discoveries that make headlines. Research is happening all the time and updates on this can be difficult to find unless you are a subscriber to an academic journal or you attend conferences, and the next best thing to attending a conference is reading the abstracts! LSPC abstracts are two pages long and accessible to all, so everyone can tune in to the latest research in planetary science.

Below is a list of abstracts led by authors here at ASC. If you have questions about any of the abstracts or poster content, please feel free to ask via email or social media.

PLANETARY DATA AND INFRASTRUCTURE:  BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME

Lauren Adoram-Kershner: [#2459] Automated Kaguya TC and MRO CTX Digital Elevation Model Generation with Ames Stereo Pipeline 

Process and validation of an automated digital elevation model generation pipeline. The products, their reproducibility, and discoverability are also described. Automated Kaguya TC and MRO CTX Digital Elevation Model Generation with Ames Stereo Pipeline.

Kaguya TC Ortho V02 Global Mosaic 474m (64ppd)
This near-global mosaic was generated using data from the SELenological and Engineering Explorer (SELENE) “Kaguya” Terrain Camera (TC) instrument. The high-performance optical Terrain Camera (TC), a 10-meter spatial resolution stereo-camera, was part of the Lunar Imager/Spectrometer (LISM) instrument suite (Kato, 2007). For use, refer to the JAXA Conditions for material usage page ( http://jda.jaxa.jp/en/service.php ) and please credit JAXA and the SELENE/Kaguya data. ©JAXA/SELENE

Sarah Black: [#1416] Addressing a Community Need:  Recommended Standards for the Correlation of Map Units Map Component 

Presenting findings from an assessment of all Correlations of Map Units (COMUs)  published with USGS I and SIM-series maps. These inform the forthcoming recommended standards for COMUs.

Tenielle Gaither: [#1498] Planetary Nomenclature:  Overview and Update for 2022 
This presentation gives an overview of the USGS Astrogeology Science Center’s Planetary Nomenclature program.

Jay Laura: [#1936] Europa Planetary Spatial Data Infrastructure 

This abstract describes the ongoing efforts of the Europa Spatial Data Infrastructure Working Group.

This is a Europa Voyager / Galileo Image Mosaic Globe.
Europa Voyager / Galileo Image Mosaic Globe

Randy Kirk: [#1517] Comparison of Digital Terrain Models from Two Photoclinometry Methods 
We are investigating the resolution and vertical precision of digital topographic models produced with two planetary photoclinometry/shape-from-shading tools.

ADVANCES IN TECHNIQUES FOR LUNAR SCIENCE

Brent Archinal: [#1685] Improved High-Resolution Lunar DTMs via the Combined Use of LROC NAC and LOLA Data

Report on improvements achieved in making high-resolution DTMs for lunar surface science and exploration, using a rigorous combination of LROC NAC and LOLA data.

PLENARY SESSION:  FUTURE SCIENCE:  NASA’S EARLY CAREER AWARD WINNERS

Kristen Bennett: [#2223] An Overview of Key Findings from the Curiosity Rover’s Campaign in Glen Torridon, Gale Crater, Mars

This presentation highlights the key findings from the Curiosity rover’s traverse through the clay-bearing Glen Torridon region of Gale Crater. An Overview of Key Findings from the Curiosity Rover’s Campaign in Glen Torridon, Gale Crater, Mars.

THE MARTIAN ATMOSPHERE:  HIGH ALTITUDE, AEROSOLS, EARLY MARS

Michael Bland[#1140] Elevated Heat Flux on Uranus’ Moon Ariel Inferred from Its Largest Observed Impact Crater 

     Relax, Ariel

     Celestial tides may warm

     But crust is the key...

 

Did you know?

LPSC has a long-running tradition of submitting abstract summaries in the form of haiku.

There is even a haiku contest, with awards presented during the conference!

EVIDENCE FOR WATER AND ICE AT THE MARTIAN SURFACE AND NEAR SUBSURFACE

Colin Dundas: [#2366] Erosional and Depositional Slopes of New Martian Gully Deposits 

Morphometric properties of new gully flows are consistent with gully formation by present-day processes.

EVIDENCE FOR APOLLO’S LEGACY OF LUNAR AND PLANETARY SCIENCE

Amber Gullikson: [#1599] USGS Astrogeology Terrestrial Analog Sample Collection: 2022 Update.

Aerial photograph showing a large, deep, circular depression with an elevated rim in the barren desert
Meteor Crater formed approximately 50,000 years ago by the impact of a 100,000-ton iron-nickel meteorite, ~30 m in diameter, which struck at an approximate speed of 12-20 km/sec. Geologic and petrologic studies of Meteor Crater, especially the works of Daniel Barringer and Eugene Shoemaker, have demonstrated conclusive evidence for the impact origin of the crater and provided diagnostic scientific tools needed to recognize impact structures throughout the Solar System.

The USGS continues to preserve and maintain the Meteor Crater sample collection. Highlighted here are current efforts related to this collection.

POSTER SESSION III: VIRTUAL: VOLCANISM ACROSS THE SOLAR SYSTEM: FROM MODELING TO ANALOG MORPHOLOGY

Laszlo Keszthelyi: [#1984] Testing a Numerical Model for Pahoehoe Flow Field Development 

The goal of this study is to test if a novel numerical approach can reproduce the behavior of well-documented compound pahoehoe flow fields. It can, but...

AEOLIAN AND MODERN PROCESSES ON MARS

Laszlo Keszthelyi: [#1982] An Alternative (Aeolian) Hypothesis for the Proposed Recent Cerberus Fossae Pyroclastic Deposit

This abstract provides observations that suggest that aeolian processes are more likely to have produced this feature.

PLANETARY VOLCANISM: FROM MELT TO MORPHOLOGY

Lori Pigue: [#2128] Relationship Between Effusive and Explosive Volcanism in the Montes Apenninus Region of the Moon 

We evaluate the compositional relationship between three pyroclastic deposits and associated rilles to characterize eruption dynamics during their emplacement.

ENVIRONMENTAL ANALOGS

Elise Rumpf: [#2631] The Terrestrial Analogs Data Portal:  A Resource for Archiving and Discovering Data 
Data archiving 

Terrestrial analogs 

Find your data here!

TERRESTRIAL OPERATIONAL ANALOGS

Lauren Edgar: [#2282] Training for Planetary Exploration in Analog Terrains:  The Value of Northern Arizona and the Colorado Plateau 

We review several planetary analog sites in northern Arizona, their historical and current use, and resources available to the community.

Lava flow from SP Crater viewed toward the north from the rim of SP, San Francisco Volcanic Field, Arizona.

POSTER SESSION III:  VIRTUAL:  ICY WORLD OCEANS, COMPOSITION, AND VOLCANISM

Paul Giessler: [#1691] An Empirical Photometric Correction for Europa 

We take a data-driven approach to deriving an empirical photometric correction for Europa using USGS ISIS and Python.

 

Thank you to the Lunar and Planetary Institute for a fun, safe, and engaging Lunar and Planetary Science Conference! We’re all looking forward to next year’s LPSC and can’t wait to get started on our abstracts!

Check out LPSC’s 2022 Website here to read this year’s abstracts and watch many of the recorded presentations: LPSC 2022 - Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (usra.edu)

 

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