The Curiosity rover has been exploring Mars for more than three years, measuring the past and present habitability potential of our nearest planetary neighbor. We've also been busy on Earth, exploring the harshest environments we could find on this planet, not only to help us understand what makes them habitable, but also how to measure it. Dr. Conrad will tell us about what we've learned on and from both planets about the evolution and decline of habitable environments.
Pamela Conrad is an astrobiologist and mineralogist. She has worked for the past several years on the development of approaches and measurements for assessment of habitability in planetary surface environments and the development of non-invasive optical methods for the in situ chemical and mineralogical surface assessment of potential rock sample targets. Her planetary science interests include the comparative early evolution of Earth and Mars and the measurement of habitability potential on rocky bodies in the solar system.