Department News

Eldridge Moores

Eldridge M. Moores | In memoriam: 1938-2018

Our colleague and dear friend, Distinguished Professor Emeritus Eldridge Moores, passed away on October 28th. Eldridge's vision, leadership, and compassion were the soul of this department. His family and his many friends and colleagues here at UC Davis and around the world are grieving from this untimely loss.

Nicholas PinterNicholas PinterWhen a river swells, are levees the best way to deal with it?

From The Washington Post: “Nicholas Pinter, a professor of geology and flood researcher at the University of California at Davis, said the current flooding in the Midwest presents both success stories and failures of levees.”


Sarah StewartSarah Stewart | TED Salon: Where did the Moon come from? A new theory.

From The big idea: Imagination is a superpower — it allows us to push beyond perceived limits, to think beyond the ordinary and to discover a new world of possibilities. The Earth and Moon are like identical twins, made up of the exact same materials -- which is really strange, since no other celestial bodies we know of share this kind of chemical relationship. What's responsible for this special connection? Looking for an answer, planetary scientist and MacArthur "Genius" Sarah T. Stewart discovered a new kind of astronomical object -- a synestia -- and a new way to solve the mystery of the Moon's origin. This talk was presented at a TED Salon event given in partnership with U.S. Air Force.

Textbooks photoGEL 12 | Dinosaur class makes a roar as popular GE option

From the California Aggie: Tyrannosaurus rex, Velociraptor, Iguanodon, Brachiosaurus, Allosaurus, Stegosaurus — all names of dinosaurs that students learn about in GEL 12: Dinosaurs. The two-unit class grants students science and engineering general education credit, making it a popular choice for non-STEM majors.


Sujoy MukhopadhyaySujoy MukhopadhyayIsotope Geochemists Glimpse Earth’s Impenetrable Interior

From EOS: Scientists using instruments that can measure isotopes in materials with exacting precision found rocks with neon in them, and they think that it’s the same neon that came from that primordial cloud. Sujoy Mukhopadhyay coauthored the study along with fellow University of California, Davis, geochemist Curtis Williams.


Jeff MountJeff MountCalifornia should stop thinking about more dams. The state is brimming with them

From the LA TImes: “Water storage is of value if you can afford it,” says Jeffrey Mount, a water expert at the Public Policy Institute of California and a former UC Davis earth sciences professor. But he questions the value of most new dam proposals.


GeMS logoGeMS | Scholarships in Geology and Marine and Coastal Science

The Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences is pleased to announce a new scholarship available to Geology and Marine and Coastal Science majors in the College of Letters & Science at UC Davis. The GeMS scholarship consists of awards up to $8,000 per year, made possible by the National Science Foundation.

2019 John Burroughs Medal | A Wilder Time: Notes from a Geologist at the Edge of The Greenland Ice

Research Associate William Glassley's book, A Wilder Time: Notes from a Geologist at the Edge of The Greenland Ice, has been awarded the 2019 John Burroughs Medal for distinguished natural history writing in book form.

What is geothermal energy? | William Glassley

From NBCnews MACH: “The Earth is a heat engine,” says William Glassley, an earth scientist at the University of California, Davis, and an expert in geothermal energy. “At depths of 20 miles or more, anywhere on the planet, there is enough heat constantly available to generate sufficient power to supply the entire world.”

Ryosuke MotaniRyosuke MotaniResearchers Describe New Reptile Platypus From the Early Triassic

From UC Davis News: Eretmorhipis was previously known only from partial fossils without a head, said Professor Ryosuke Motani, a paleontologist at the University of California, Davis, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences and co-author on the paper.“ 
This is a very strange animal,” Motani said. “When I started thinking about the biology I was really puzzled.”

Translating Your Science | Babs Wortham

Graduate student Babs Wortham's Professors For the Future Project is a panel discussion and workshop entitled "Translating your Science." See attached flier for details.

Better Scientific Software (BSSw) Fellow | Rene Gassmoeller

Rene Gassmoeller is a 2019 Better Scientific Software (BSSw) Fellow. The BSSw Fellowship Program gives recognition and funding to leaders and advocates of high-quality scientific software. BSSw Focus: Social challenges in the evolution of scientific software projects

Picnic Day  | ‘Adventure Awaits': Saturday, April 13, 2019

The Picnic Day board of directors last week announced the theme of the 105th event as “Adventure Awaits,” which, according to Chair Elise Pohlhammer “captures both that Picnic Day itself is a day of adventure, exploration and opportunity, and that coming to Davis for school is an adventure in its own right.” The board further emphasized the adventure theme by choosing as parade marshal a planetary scientist: Sarah Stewart, professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences who recently received a MacArthur “Genius” Fellows grant.

David GoldDavid GoldFirst Jellyfish Genome Reveals Ancient Beginnings of Complex Body Plan

From UC Davis News: Jellyfish undergo an amazing metamorphosis, from tiny polyps growing on the seafloor to swimming medusae with stinging tentacles. This shape-shifting has served them well, shepherding jellyfish through more than 500 million years of mass extinctions on Earth.
“Whatever they’re doing has really worked for them,” said Assistant Professor David Gold, a lead researcher on the genome study.

Sarah StewartSarah StewartThis Planetary Scientist Is Now a Certified Genius

From "I was sitting where I am now at my desk, and I usually do the caller-ID-screening thing, but it was a Chicago number and I thought, 'Oh, Chicago, that's fun, so I'll pick up the phone," Sarah Stewart told After the trio on the other end identified themselves with the MacArthur Foundation, "I just didn't hear anything that came next, because I guessed that they were calling about this thing and it was a complete surprise for me, so I went into shock," she continued. (They told her they're used to that.)

Isabel MontanezIsabel Montañez | Jean Baptiste Lamarck Medal

Professor Isabel Montañez  will receive the 2019 Jean Baptiste Lamarck Medal from the European Geophysical Union (EGU) Division of Stratigraphy, Sedimentology, and Paleontology at the EGU 2019 General Assembly in Vienna, Austria (April 7-12). The medal is awarded to scientists for their exceptional contributions to stratigraphy, sedimentology or paleontology.

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