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Department of Earth Sciences

 

My PhD research is mainly focused on the thermal evolution of asteroid-sized bodies during accretion and differentiation and what possible variety of structures of planetesimals, the first planetary bodies in the solar system, may have formed in first few million years of our solar system. It is this initial population of planetesimals that goes on to form the terrestrial planets and the cores of the giant planets so constraining the full suite of possible structures for these bodies is important for understanding the subsequent formation of larger solar system bodies. To investigate this, I develop detailed 1D thermal models of these processes and used them to predict certain properties, such as isotopic ratios, in order to compare the model results with the meteorite record.

I am also interested in the mechanisms by which planetary bodies of all sizes can generate dynamo fields within their liquid iron cores. The ability for a planet’s core to sustain a magnetic field provide a key constraint on heat flow within the planet and the presence of such a field is likely to promote habitable conditions on the planet’s surface by shielding the planet from harmful radiation as well as helping to retain its atmosphere. This work has involved combining novel analogue experiments in a fluid dynamics laboratory with thermal modelling to explore pre-existing and new mechanisms of dynamo generation.

Publications

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Research Student

Contact Details

Email address: 
+44 (0) 1223 764919

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Person keywords: 
Geophysics