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    We are the University of Chicago Department of the Geophysical Sciences. We study the history, interior, and exterior of Earth and other planets.

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    Our world-class scientists are fascinated with the natural processes that shape our world and cultivate the skills it takes to study them.

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    Facilities & Resources

    From wave tanks to mass spectrometers, our department's laboratories allow our scientists to push the limits of their fields.

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Research Spotlight

Professor Sue Kidwell uses the fossil record from the last thousand years to understand changes in biological baselines due to human populations.

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Student / Alumni Spotlight

Stewart Edie is a paleobiologist who wants to understand why some groups of organisms are more diverse that others, and how extinction prunes the tree of life.

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Faculty Spotlight

Malte Jansen is a creative physical oceanographer with impressive mathematical chops and great taste in problems.

Learn more about Malte See all People

Geophysical Science News

  • “Geologist weaves science into her art at the loom”

    April 04, 2019

    Graduate student Claire Zurkowski was interviewed in a recent UChicago News piece about the intersection of her high-pressure geoscience research and weaving.

    “It requires a steady hand and not too much coffee," she says.

    Congratulations Claire!

  • Joanne Simpson celebrated by AGU

    March 29, 2019

    In honor of women's history month, today we celebrate the work and memory of Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the US to receive a Ph.D. in meteorology and a pioneer in the field. Her degree was given by UChicago's former Dept. of Meteorology, now part of our own Department. 

    You can learn more about her story and many others here, courtesy of the AGU.

    Joanne Simpson (1923 - 2010).

  • Persistence of paleo-rivers featured across the board!

    March 28, 2019

    A recent paper led by Prof. Edwin Kite and co-authored by former Dept. member Gaia Stucky de Quay found that intense precipitation-fed runoff was a global phenomenon on Mars for over a billion years. The study has made quite a journalistic splash, featured so far in eight online publications, certainly with more to come.

    Congratulations Prof. Kite & Dr. de Quay!


    UChicago News • AGU Eos • National Geographic • Popular Mechanics • Space.comNewsweek • The Sun • Inverse

  • Sarah Aarons Interviewed for UChicago News

    March 06, 2019

    Research Specialist Sarah Aarons was interviewed in UChicago News for a recent paper published in AGU Letters! She and her coauthors analyzed ice cores from Taylor Glacier, finding evidence that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet collapsed during the last interglacial. These results help shed new light on the cascading effects of rapid climate change.

    Congratulations Sarah!

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