Physics Seminar talk with Driss Takir, Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow, Department of Physics, Ithaca College


Contributed by Jill Ackerman

Please join us for a talk with Driss Takir, Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow, Department of Physics, Ithaca College

Tuesday November 12 at 12:10 in CNS 206B

Title: Spectroscopy of Outer Main Belt Asteroids and Carbonaceous Chondrites.

Abstract: The carbonaceous chondrite meteorites I study are primitive meteorites that consist of some of the most pristine matter known in the Solar System, unaltered since the original condensation from the solar nebula. These meteorites have been shown to contain amino acids that are the precursor molecules to life. Some of these meteorites even contain diamonds from a highly energetic event- possibly from a supernova that occurred before the formation of our solar system's nebula. These carbon-rich meteorites are relatively rare in our earthly collections and are thought to come from primitive asteroids that orbit the Sun between 2.5 < a < 4.0 AU (between Mars and Jupiter). They are also thought to be the source of water and organics delivered to terrestrial planets during their formation. In this talk I will discuss how I developed reliable spectral signatures that can place constraints on the degree and location of thermal energy deposited in these meteorites that may have aqueously altered the minerals. Using the SpeX spectrograph/imager at NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF), I measured near-infrared (NIR: 0.7-4.0 micron) spectra of 45 outer Main Belt asteroids  and I used the JHU APL lab spectrometer to measure 10 meteorite spectra that allowed the identification of four  spectral groups, each of which reflects a distinct surface mineralogy AND THESE GROUPS HELP US TO UNDERSTAND THE DIVERSITY OF THERMAL HISTORIES IN THE ASTEROID REGIONS - POINTING THE WAY TO A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF SOLAR SYSTEM FORMATION ENERGETICS.

Pizza and refreshments provided for $1. Please bring your own cup. Remember to Reuse, Reduce, Recycle.

Individuals with disabilities requiring accommodations should contact the department assistant at We ask that requests for accommodations be made as soon as possible.