Sharon Purdy


  • Center for Earth and Planetary Studies

Dr. Sharon Wilson Purdy joined the Center for Earth and Planetary Studies in 2005 to investigate the geology and geomorphology of landforms on Mars that were formed and (or) modified by surface water. The timing and duration of fluvial processes on Mars provides critical information about the climate history and habitability of the planet. She is involved in targeting, data analysis, and interpretation of images from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission, and the landing site selection process for Curiosity, the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover. Sharon’s research at CEPS was highlighted in the Smithsonian Channel’s “Women in Science Month.”

Originally from Wisconsin, Sharon went to Vermont to study geology at Middlebury College, receiving her BA in 2001. She earned a MS from the Department of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia in 2005 and returned in 2011 as a PhD candidate.

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