Tracking Life’s Fingerprints with Molecules and Isotopes

Fri 3 May 2019

Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI)
3700 San Martin Drive
Baltimore, MD 21218


12:00 PM - 1:30 PM


Biomarkers are organic molecular remnants of past life preserved in ancient soils and sediments. We use both the distributions of biomarkers and the stable isotopes they carry to reconstruct past environments over Earth’s history. This presentation will explore how biomarkers and their isotopes provide insights to past climate and carbon cycle dynamics both on land and in the ocean through geologic time. Further, new analytical tools and a growing understanding of isotope patterns within biomarkers on Earth has opened exciting frontiers in astrobiology via molecular isotope studies of organics from planetary environments.

Speaker: Katherine H. Freeman (Dept. of Geosciences, Penn State University)


Light lunch (provided) starts at 12pm; talk starts at 12:30pm.

Planets, Life, and the Universe Lecture Series presentations are also webcast live. Webcasts can be viewed at the STScI webcast site during the scheduled presentation, and can be found afterward in the STScI webcast archive.

STScI is located in the Muller Building on the Johns Hopkins University Homewood campus. View a JHU map and directions.

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