In the Spotlight: May 27-31, 2024

Kudos to these faculty, staff and programs. 

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  • NAU alum Megan Gialluca, now a doctoral student at the University of Washington’s Department of Astronomy, is the first author on “The Implications of Thermal Hydrodynamic Atmospheric Escape on the TRAPPIST-1 Planets,” published in The Planetary Science Journal. The research explores the history of planetary atmospheres within the TRAPPIST-1 solar system by analyzing oxygen and water loss data.  
  • Rebecca Carmack, a part-time faculty member for NAU’s Department of Astronomy and Planetary Science (DAPS), and associate astronomy professor Mark J. Loeffler authored “Energy and temperature dependencies for electron-induced sputtering from H2O-ice: Implications for the icy Galilean moons,” published in The Planetary Science Journal. The study extends data surrounding how electrons influence the exospheres of icy celestial bodies to the Galilean moons.   
  • Loeffler also joined recent doctoral degree graduate Patrick Tribbett to publish research on thermal oxidation reactions between ammonia and ozone in The Planetary Science Journal. 
  • Christopher Edwards, an associate astronomy and planetary science professor, co-authored “Observations of Water Frost on Mars with THEMIS: Application to the Presence of Brines and the Stability of (Sub)Surface Water Ice,” an article recently published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets. The research uses data from the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) to detect water ice on Mars’ surface.
  • Chris Haberle, an assistant research professor in DAPS, received funding for a three-year, $2.1 million research proposal through NASA’s Planetary Science and Technology from Analog Research program. Haberle is working alongside Edwards, a co-investigator on the project, and assistant research professor Alicia Rutledge. The project entails performing field analog investigations of hot spring silica sinter deposits in Utah and Chile with one full-time graduate student and two undergraduate students each year.
  • During the NCAA West Regional in Fayetteville, Arkansas, the NAU women’s track and field team broke the NAU school record in the 4×400-meter relay. Madeline Wilson, LiNay Perry, Maggi Congdon and Kyairra Reigh combined to run a time of 3:33.01. This is the second time in school history the 4×400-meter relay has qualified for the NCAA National Championships.
  • Annika Reiss and Gracelyn Larkin both qualified for the NCAA National Championships in the 5,000-meter. Reiss ran a time of 15:57.81, while Larkin ran a time of 16:03.86. Ava Mitchell finished 25th overall with a time of 16:35.45, Nikita Moore finished 29th with a time of 16:39.70, Bryn Morley finished 31st with a time of 16:46.24 and Aliandrea Upshaw finished 33rd with a time of 16:49.79.
  • Congdon earned a spot at the national championships after finishing fourth in the 1,500-meter with a time of 4:18.05. Keira Moore finished 21st in the event with a time of 4:23.60. 
  • Karrie Baloga qualified for the national championships after finishing second in her heat of the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a personal best time of 10:00.72. Her time is the second-fastest in NAU school history. 
  • The NAU Sigma Chi Fraternity raised and donated $76,499 to the Huntsman Cancer Institute of Salt Lake City during the 2023-24 academic year. Of the 240 chapters of Sigma Chi Huntsman fundraising in North America, NAU Sigma Chi donated the 10th-largest amount this year.  
The NAU Review