Abstract by Tabitha Caldwell

Personal Infomation

Presenter's Name

Tabitha Caldwell

Degree Level


Abstract Infomation


Chemistry and Biochemistry

Faculty Advisor

Daniel Austin


Separation and Implementation of Mars Dust



The atmosphere of Mars is densely populated with charged dust particles (1-5 micrometers in diameter) whose characteristics are unknown. Measurements of the size and charge of the particles are needed to better understand the atmosphere of Mars. We are developing a charge detection mass spectrometer (CDMS) that can be used to measure these properties. With no real Mars dust available on earth, other minerals/simulants with similar composition can be used during testing of the instrument. However, it must be separated by size to match the micron-size range of Martian dust. This presentation will discuss the various techniques we have implemented in separation of these particles, including sedimentation and centrifugation.