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 Geophysics & Planetary Geosciences (3223): People
Jamie  Molaro's Picture
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
M/S 183-205
4800 Oak Grove Drive
Pasadena, CA 91109
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Jamie Molaro

  • PhD in Planetary Science, 2015, University of Arizona
  • Certificate in College Teaching, 2015, University of Arizona
  • BS in Physics, 2008, San Francisco State University

Research Interests

My research focuses on the role of thermomechanical processes in the regolith production and surface evolution of airless bodies. I study thermally induced stress in rocky and icy materials at a variety of scales, from micro- to macroscopic. Comparison of thermal models to spacecraft and laboratory data will allow us to understand to what extent (and how quickly) this process works to break down material on different solar system bodies. In general, I’m interested in active surfaces processes throughout the solar system, from planets to moons to asteroids to comets. I employ primarily numerical modeling techniques in my research, along with the occasional laboratory experiment and terrestrial field study.

Professional Experience
  • NASA Postdoctoral Fellow, Jet Propulsion Laboratory (2015-present)
  • Graduate Student Researcher, University of Arizona (2010-2015)
  • Research Assistant, NASA Ames Research Center (2008-2009)

Selected Awards
  • NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellowship, (2015)
  • EGU Outstanding Student Poster Award, (2015)
  • College of Science Graduate Service Award, (2015)
  • LPL Graduate Student Award for Service, 2014, (2015)
  • SSERVI Exploration Science Forum, Student Poster Competition, First Place, (2014)
  • NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship, (2012-2015)
  • University of Arizona College of Science Galileo Circle Scholar, (2011)

Selected Publications
  1. Molaro, JL, 2015. Stress, on the rocks: Thermally induced stresses in rocks and microstructures on airless bodies, implications for breakdown. (in press with the University of Arizona)
  2. Eppes, MC, A Willis, JL Molaro, S Abernathy, and B Zhou, 2015. Cracks in Martian boulders exhibit preferred orientations that point to solar-induced thermal stress. Nature Communications 6, 6712, DOI: 10.1038/ncomms7712.
  3. Molaro, JL, S Byrne, and S Langer, 2015. Grain-scale thermoelastic stresses and spatiotemporal temperature gradients on airless bodies, implications for rock breakdown. JGR Planets 120, DOI: 10.1002/2014JE004729.
  4. Molaro, JL, and S Byrne, 2012. Rates of Temperature Change of Airless Landscapes and Implications for Thermal Stress Weathering. Journal of Geophysical Research 117, E10: 10.1029/2012JE004138.

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