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Dr. Melissa Lane

Senior Scientist

Currently resides in Lititz, PA
lane [at]
Areas of Expertise
Earth, Mars | Mars Odyssey | Spectroscopy, Remote sensing, Geology, Geomorphology, Mineralogy, Mapping

Research Interests

Dr. Melissa Lane specializes in remote-sensing studies of Mars using the thermal infrared wavelengths of energy. She is interested in thermal emission (vibrational) spectroscopy of minerals and has studied sulfates, phosphates, synthetic olivines, oxides, carbonates, chlorides, and quartz. Her theoretical and experimental research is oriented toward understanding how crystal structure and mineral properties affect spectral shape, and identifying minerals on Mars and interpreting their geologic setting in order to understand the past and present environments on Mars and how that planet evolved. More recent research topics include the spectroscopy of phosphates, synthetic pyroxenes, and meteorites. Mineral studies are including measurement at 1 atm as well as in a vacuum environment (to simulate the surface environments of Mercury, the Moon, and asteroids) over a range of temperatures from -120 to 1200 degrees C.

Professional History

After receiving her PhD in Geology at Arizona State University in 1997, Dr. Lane was a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow at NASA Johnson Space Center. She joined PSI in  2000. Dr. Lane is a Mars Odyssey THEMIS Participating Scientist. 

Honors and Awards

2012, Recipient of the Congressional Antarctica Service Medal of the United States of America

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