Goldschmidt 2015: Introducing the Bloggers (2/3)

Adrienne Macartney

I’m a 3rd year PhD student at the University of Glasgow investigating interactions between the atmosphere and crust on the young Mars.


Mars lost a possibly dense early atmosphere, yet the abundant carbonate deposits anticipated from this loss are not evident. My research investigates mineral carbon sequestration on Mars, looking at the intimate connection between crustal and atmospheric processes. This is achieved through three research strands:


1.)  Investigating carbonate occurrences in Martian meteorites and comparing these carbonates with selected terrestrial ophiolite analogues from Norway and the United Arab Emirates.

2.) Conducting controlled carbonate growth experiments in the laboratory using terrestrial and meteorite samples, for the purpose of understanding the environmental conditions required for particular types of carbonate formation.

3.) Building a mock up of the NASA rock abrasion tool (RAT), before Prototyping a new Mars rover tool that utilises ultrasonic grinding, this will enhance our ability to observe carbonate signatures insitu on the surface of Mars


I will be presenting a poster titled ‘Simulating Atmospheric Loss and Carbonate Formation on Early Mars Using Hydrothermal Experiments’ at session 23b: Mars: From SNC’s to Curiosity, as well as attending the workshop ‘Geochemical modelling: Using PHREEQC For Laboratory And Industrial Applications’. I’m also a Student Volunteer at Goldschmidt, you’ll probably see me walking around with a camera. I am most looking forward to meeting and chatting with people who can help me grasp the world of geochemistry a little better than I currently do.


Prior to academia I was a mountain guide, living and working in India for many years. I hold the Licentiateship of the Royal Photographic Society (LRPS) for work in the Delhi slums and published many non-academic articles.


You can catch me on Twitter (@AdrienneMacartn) and my website.

Nicci Potts

Hi! I’m Nicci, a final year PhD student at the Open University, UK, studying lunar volatiles, and blogger for this Goldschmidt conference. I split my time between the Open University and the VU University Amsterdam where I perform my experiments. My research, focused on the volatile inventory of the lunar interior, combines experimental petrology with studies of Apollo samples to understand the behaviour of F, Cl, and OH in lunar basaltic melts. I have been experimentally growing the mineral apatite under temperatures, pressures, fO2, and compositions relevant to lunar conditions. I perform in situ measurements of volatiles in these experiments using a NanoSIMS 50L. You can hear all about this work at my poster on Wednesday evening (Session 23a, poster board 4007). In addition to my work on apatite I also perform experiments on volatile degassing under lunar conditions. A major objective of these degassing experiments is to measure in situ Cl isotope fractionation, which can be combined with measurements of Cl isotopes in Apollo 14 samples also on the NanoSIMS 50L. This is my first ever Goldschmidt so you will probably see me wandering around lost and confused! I’m really excited to learn all about the recent developments in geochemistry and tell everyone about my new results. Follow me on Twitter (@nicci_potts).

Rhian Rees-Owen

Hello from Yorkshire! I’m a PhD student at the University of Leeds, where I use tree ring stable isotopes and biomarkers to reconstruct Antarctic palaeoclimate 3-14 million years ago (you can find out more about this at my talk in session 9a on Thursday at 16.45).  This is my first time blogging at Goldschmidt although I have (very) occasionally written posts for other blogs; I sometimes tweet as @rhianino. I’m excited to learn about all things palaeoclimate related and will be blogging about interesting presentations in the organic and ocean geochemistry sessions as well as hassling you all to come to the plenary sessions as part of my role as Student Ambassador. See you in Prague!