Welcome to the Planetary Chemistry Laboratory

The Planetary Chemistry Laboratory

The Planetary Chemistry Laboratory is run by Professor Bruce Fegley, Jr. and Dr. Katharina Lodders in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. We specialize in modeling gas chemistry in the atmospheres of the Earth, terrestrial planets and exoplanets, gas giants and their satellites, and cool stars. Have a look at our Research page to learn more about what we do.

All published peer-reviewed papers by Prof. Fegley and Dr. Lodders are available through the Publications page for your personal use. Posters, talks, and abstracts presented at conferences and meetings will be posted under Presentations (this site under construction).

News items about current research, published papers, and other goings-on in the Planetary Chemistry Laboratory are posted below.

Our site is currently under construction, so come back soon to see the improvements and updated content!

Revised Paper on exo-Venus submitted

A revision of the paper ‘Atmospheric Chemistry of Venus-like Exoplanets’ by Laura Schaefer and Bruce Fegley has been submitted to the Astrophysical Journal. A preprint of the revision is available on our Publications page.

Division of Planetary Sciences Meeting – Pasadena, CA

The dome for the 200-inch Hale telescope at Palomar Observatory

Laura Schaefer attended the 42nd annual meeting of the Division of Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society. The meeting was held in Pasadena, CA on October 3 – 8, 2010. Laura gave a talk entitled ‘Equilibrium Chemistry of the Atmospheres of Hot Earth-like Exoplanets’, which is available on our Presentations page.

Elements in the Cosmos

Dr. Katharina Lodders has written an article for the online magazine Glimpse entitled “The Chemical Elements in the Cosmos”. This article is available below.

Exo-Venus Paper

We have submitted a new paper to the Astrophysical Journal Letters. This paper is entitled ‘Atmospheric Chemistry of Venus-like Exoplanets’ by Laura Schaefer and Bruce Fegley. The paper applies models of atmosphere-lithosphere equilibrium developed for Venus to potential terrestrial-sized exoplanets. The paper makes predictions about the chemical composition of the atmospheres of Venus-like exoplanets, their surface pressures and temperatures, and the mineralogies of their surfaces. A preprint of the paper can be found here.

EARTH magazine article

The magazine EARTH has an article about Prof. Fegley and Laura Schaefer’s work on the exoplanet CoRoT-7b in it’s January 2010 issue. The article is titled “Today’s Forecast: Quartz with a Chance of Feldspar” and is available both online and in the print issue.