The European Astronaut Centre

#IShouldBeRevising#NeverStopWritingHI! It is my pleasure to report that I ~passed~my~MSc~defense~.  I'm almost done! :D Now I need to revise before re-submitting. I've made excellent progress so far, I think.Next stop for me is Cologne, where I am very, very excited to visit the European Astronaut Centre next week!Interior of EAC facility. The CSA logo is near the back! Photo credit: ESA - D. Baumbach, 2010Before I discuss the European Astronaut Centre (EAC), I'll mention that it…

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Let’s talk about walnuts

#NoLongerWriting#IShouldBePrepingMyPresentationI submitted my thesis a couple weeks ago! Everything I have been working on these past two years is culminating. I need to prepare a pretty long public lecture, (~45 mins at Western? Whaaat? At SFU it was only 20!) and study for any and all questions that may be asked of me.So instead of talking about that, let's talk about something completely different."Isn't your blog supposed to be professional?"Walnuts.That seems out of nowhere. But,…

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Let’s talk about walnuts

#NoLongerWriting#IShouldBePrepingMyPresentationI submitted my thesis a couple weeks ago! Everything I have been working on these past two years is culminating. I need to prepare a pretty long public lecture, (~45 mins at Western? Whaaat? At SFU it was only 20!) and study for any and all questions that may be asked of me.So instead of talking about that, let's talk about something completely different."Isn't your blog supposed to be professional?"Walnuts.That seems out of nowhere. But,…

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The (XRD) Results Are In!

#StillWritingHuzzah! The XRD results are in!If it weren't for my e-mail exchange with Mark at the beginning of the month, some of the mineral assemblages would have certainly confused me.Recall: I divided my samples into four categoriesSolid - in tact, relatively hard crystalline diapir materialIntermediate - softer diapir material, can be crumblyCrusty - very friable, vuggy material found on diapir surfaces, often adjacent to intermediate rockSurficial - salts precipitating on soils and rocks downstream of…

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Some salty waters: Thenardite, halite, and gypsum

#StillWritingIn my drafts and writing revisions, I noticed that I had a few missing pieces of information.To clarify a few questions I had regarding the chemistry of perennial springs on Axel Heiberg Island, I reached out to Mark Fox-Powell, who joined us in the field last year. Mark is a post-doctoral research fellow at the University of St. Andrews, with a background in microbiology. His current research is in astrobiology, with emphasis on geochemistry of…

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New Year – The Final Countdown

This semester is the final push to graduate on time.No pressure.I need to have my thesis ready to submit to my committee by March 12th.So far I have drafts up to my results section. I'll be submitted monograph style as opposed to manuscript style. I hope I'll be able to put together a manuscript together afterwards.I've crushed an adequate selection of samples and submitted them for XRD analysis. I tried to represent a range of…

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New RADARSAT-2 images! Looking good!

Good news,Earlier this year, Catherine and I submitted a SOAR-E proposal to acquire new RADARSAT-2 images of salt diapirs. Our original intent was to get images of halite salt diapirs in Iran to compare with our anhydrite diapirs on Axel Heiberg Island. However, we weren't able to get an images over that target site, and we needed to rethink our plan of attack. Instead, we submitted a request for four additional images over Axel Heiberg Island.…

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International Astronautical Congress

Hello!I've returned after spending some time Down Under!This dish is 70 m across, and received thefinal data from CassiniI am very fortunate to have received a grant to attend the Space Generation Congress (SGC) and 2017 International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in Adelaide, Australia. The grant was a Student Participation Initiative from the Canadian Space Agency. I love them so much.Before arriving in Adelaide, I took a little detour into Canberra. SGC had organized an optional…

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Comparisons between features in Yellowstone and on Axel Heiberg Island

Hi hi!Eclipse, 10:22 MST, I took thisthrough a telescopeI’m writing to you after a phenomenal family vacation I took with my parents, aunt and uncle down to Idaho and Wyoming. The main destination – the totality zone for the eclipse! The eclipse was indeed a very breathtaking, magical experience, but today I will be writing about some of the geology we saw. While passing through Idaho, we stopped at Craters of the Moon National Monument.…

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Comparisons between features in Yellowstone and on Axel Heiberg Island

Hi hi!Eclipse, 10:22 MST, I took thisthrough a telescopeI’m writing to you after a phenomenal family vacation I took with my parents, aunt and uncle down to Idaho and Wyoming. The main destination – the totality zone for the eclipse! The eclipse was indeed a very breathtaking, magical experience, but today I will be writing about some of the geology we saw. While passing through Idaho, we stopped at Craters of the Moon National Monument.…

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