Radiation Processing of Dust, Asteroids and Moons: Space Weathering and Cosmochemistry

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Dust in space is shaped and modified by radiation from stars, and provides a surface on which diffuse gases of simple molecules can react and form new chemical species. While these processes are first identified by telescope and spacecraft measurements, laboratory measurements and mathematical modeling are needed to determine the specifics of the surface interactions. This talk will discuss recent investigations of the chemical and physical changes produced in dust grains by charged particle radiation and in order to explain observations on several small bodies in the solar system.

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Micah graduated with High Honors from Montana Tech in 2007 in general engineering. In 2009 he was awarded a DOE SULI research fellowship at Pacific Northwest National Lab, and in 2011 he received a NASA NESSF graduate research fellowship. Micah is currently a Ph.D. student at the University of Virginia where his work has focused on computational studies of charged particle interactions with ices and silicates.