Evans, Alexander J

Assistant Professor


Alex couples computational modeling and analyses of observational data to elucidate the complex histories of planetary interiors and surfaces. His research integrates across traditional disciplinary boundaries of geophysics, petrology, geomechanics, atmospheres, climate, geodesy, geology, geochemistry, and biology. His work includes analyses of altimetry, gravity, geomorphology, and tectonics and computational modeling of the structure, surface, and atmospheric and internal evolution of planetary bodies within and beyond our Solar System. Additionally, he has also been involved in the design, development, and implementation of planetary exploration missions.



D’Hondt, Ceci

High School Student

Ceci is a high school senior at Lincoln School. She is currently studying lunar volatile element speciation in volcanic degassing. She uses thermodynamic models to predict the stable gas species and metal precipitates likely to develop in lunar environments. In the past, Ceci has worked on investigating the stability of phases of volcanic species relevant to exoplanet atmospheres in the carbon, hydrogen, sulphur, nitrogen, and oxygen compositional space.

Year 4


Hundal, Carol

Graduate Student

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Khan, Dean

Postdoctoral Research Associate

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Dean is interested in understanding the evolution of terrestrial planets through time, with a particular focus on modeling how changes in the properties of exoplanets and their planetary systems influence habitability. To achieve this, he conducts cross-disciplinary research that integrates models of mantle thermochemical evolution and atmospheric evolution. In the past, Dean has worked on optimizing thermodynamic databases at pressure-temperature-composition conditions relevant to the Martian mantle. This work aimed to improve interpretations of seismic data collected by InSight through the use of high-pressure, high-temperature multi-anvil experiments that he conducted.



Jones, Matthew J

Postdoctoral Research Associate

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Matt’s research focuses on the formation and evolution of planetary bodies, especially terrestrial planets. He is interested in using numerical modeling to understand the large-scale geodynamic, thermochemical, and crustal evolution of planets so that we may better understand the history of bodies in our own solar system as well as what we can expect to see in other systems. Currently, Matt is investigating the distribution of lunar crustal terranes that we observe today, supplementing finite element modeling with the perspective provided by lunar gravity, topography, and composition data.

Year 2


Levin, Janette N

Graduate Student

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Janie is interested in investigating surface and subsurface processes by analyzing the features they leave on planetary surfaces. She seeks to apply a combination of remote sensing and numerical modeling techniques to describe and study the fascinating terrain that can be found on rocky bodies. In the past, she has worked on projects concerning Mars and Antarctica, and looks forward to going somewhere in between distance-wise by researching the Moon.



Pate, Joseph

Under Graduate Student

Year 1


Ramirez, Steven

Graduate Student

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Steven is interested in understanding planetary bodies’ evolution and the formation of their surface features. He utilizes numerical modeling to study the large-scale thermochemical and crustal evolution of planetary bodies and understand their geodynamic history. Steven’s current work involves investigating the long-term dynamical effects of planetary-scale impacts on the martian interior and whether they allow for the preservation of the hemispheric martian dichotomy.

Former Members of the Lab

Jones, Matt

PhD Student (Fall 2023)

Nichols-Fleming, Fiona

PhD Student (Fall 2023)
Now a postdoc at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum

Bjonnes, Evan

PhD Student (Fall 2021)
Now a postdoc at Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI)

Walker, Malik

Undergraduate Student (Summer 2019)
Now a graduate student at Princeton University

Weller, Matthew

Postdoctoral Research Associate
Now a postdoc at Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI)

Wiggins, Sean

Graduate Student
Now a postdoc at Purdue University

Wilner, Joel

Graduate Student

Zuckermann, Anna

Undergraduate Student (Spring 2019)