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Susanne Schwenzer

Lecturer in Earth Sciences, The Open University

I am a mineralogist specialized in noble gases and hydrothermal minerals/processes. Overall, the current foci of my work are Mars and Earth. For Mars there are three main topics: Curiosity in Gale Crater, impact-generated hydrothermal systems and noble gases in Martian meteorites. The questions that I am interested in include Martian meteorite’s noble gases, Martian impact-generated hydrothermal systems and their interaction with the surface and atmosphere, and experimental work related to both areas. My main interest is in understanding hydrous alteration processes, the effects of mineralogical changes on the chemical and physical rock features, and the local environments crated by those processes. I am interested in applying results of individual experiments to ongoing and future missions to Mars, especially the Mars Science Laboratory mission, which launched on 26 of November 2011. The investigation of individual mineral assemblages and their formation eventually leads to questions of environmental conditions and habitability on Mars and on early Earth. To understand the processes out of reach for field based geology, I am regularly engaging in studying processes on terrestrial analogues and experiments.


  • –present
    Lecturer in Earth Sciences , The Open University