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Kenneth A. Farley

W.M. Keck Foundation Professor of Geochemistry
Contact information for Kenneth A. Farley
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Email: farley@​
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B.S., Yale University, 1986; Ph.D., University of California (San Diego), 1991. Assistant Professor, Caltech, 1993-96; Associate Professor, 1997-98; Professor, 1998-2003; Keck Foundation Professor, 2003-. Director, Tectonic Observatory, 2003-04; Division Chair, 2004-14.
Research Areas: Geochemistry

Research Interests

I am a geochemist with primary interest in noble gas isotopes and their application to a range of earth science problems. Topics I study in my laboratory include the chemical and isotopic evolution of the Earth's mantle and atmosphere; petrogenesis of oceanic lavas; geochronometry and low temperature thermochronometry; the geologic history of the interplanetary dust flux as recorded in deep sea sediments, and methods and nuclear physics of cosmogenic surface exposure dating. I am also interested in the geochemistry and geochronology of Mars. I am a participating scientist on the Curiosity Mars rover mission exploring Gale Crater, and I am Project Scientist for NASA’s Mars 2020 mission scheduled to land in February of 2021.