U-Idaho Talent Makes Waves
Geological sciences graduate student, Alex Patthoff, and his adviser, geology professor Simon Kattenhorn, have made a discovery of international significance. Their groundbreaking research documents evidence of a liquid ocean on Saturn's moon Enceladus, which is currently being imaged by NASA's Cassini spacecraft and has intrigued planetary scientists with its erupting geysers of water, emanating from giant cracks near the south pole of the moon.
Alex's doctoral research, documenting evidence of the find, has already secured his selection as the 2012 recipient of the national Pellas-Ryder Award for best peer-reviewed student research paper in planetary science.
Alex expects to complete his PhD degree in May 2012 and was recently awarded a highly-competitive postdoctoral fellowship from NASA at the Jet Propulsion Lab.
Geology Professor Named One of America’s 300 Best
April 3, 2012: The Princeton Review named Karen Harpp, associate professor of geochemistry at the University of Idaho, one of the 300 best professors in the U.S.
Formerly of Colgate University, Harpp was chosen out of over 42,000 professors nationwide using student data collected by the Princeton Review and RateMyProfessor.com.
U-Idaho Professor Takes on Role to Preserve Biodiversity
January 2012: Dennis Geist, professor of geology, was named President of the Charles Darwin Foundation, which is dedicated to research in support of conservation in the Galápagos Islands.
Evidence for a global ocean on Enceladus
UI Geological Sciences researchers Alex Patthoff (PhD candidate) and Prof Simon Kattenhorn were recognized by ScienceNews.org (Sept 6, 2011) for their work studying evidence for a global ocean on Saturn's icy moon Enceladus. They have a paper on the topic in Geophysical Research Letters (view journal article).
Further recognition of this work has been cited in USA Today (Sept 27, 2011).
Gunterite: New Mineral Named for Geology Professor
Geology Professor Mickey Gunter has been honored by the International Mineralogical Association, which voted to name the newly discovered mineral after him.
"It's one of the biggest honors a person could have in their life as a mineralogist," says Gunter. "It's a bit overwhelming at the same time."
The orange-yellow mineral -- Na4(H2V10028)22H20 -- is the most recently named new mineral to be discovered this year. It comes out of the Sunday Mine in San Miguel, Colorado, a mine that has already produced several new minerals in recent years.
2011-2012 Student Awards
Outstanding Graduate Student
$150 and plaque
$100 and plaque
$100 and plaque
Liselle Batt Award
Gift: engraved pouch with rock hammer
Alumni Achievement Award
Gift: engraved field pouch
Recipient of one of the $1000 COS Leadership awards for next academic year