Maria Banks received a PhD in geology and planetary science from the University of Arizona. Her graduate studies primarily involved the study of glaciers and ice sheets, climate change, and ice-related erosional and depositional landforms on Earth and Mars. As a graduate student, Banks worked with imagery of the Martian surface acquired by the High Resolution Imaging Experiment (HiRISE) onboard Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). She was also a member of the Phoenix Mars Mission team, and participated in the MESSENGER (MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging) mission to Mercury.
Banks is currently a postdoctoral fellow with CEPS. In addition to her interests in glaciers and climate change, she is studying tectonic features on the Moon using imagery from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO). Banks also continues to participate in the MESSENGER and MRO missions.
Banks recently completed several months of fieldwork in Antarctica as a science technician with the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Divide Ice Core Project. To read more about her work and adventures in Antarctica, visit From Earth to Mars: Studying Climate Change in Antarctica and Antarctic Update on the AirSpace blog. For more details, visit Maria's blog at: http://adventures-in-climate-change.com/drillingintothepast/index.php/more-information/about/.