Above: a Gujba CBa chondrite, formed by collision between two planetesimals ~5 million years after the Solar System was born.



July 2021

1) Dr. Justin Hu successfully defended his PhD thesis on "Rare earth isotope variations and implications for the evolution of the early solar system". He is going to start a postdoctoral position at University of Cambridge in UK. Congratulations!  

2) Nicolas Dauphas collaborated on a publication in Science Advances led by Bruce Charlier identifying large 84Sr anomalies in fine-grained refractory inclusions. This supports a p-process origin of Sr isotopic variations in the solar system, which has important implications for the chronology of moderately volatile element depletion in the solar system. It is featured in the news of Victoria University of Wellington

3) Nicolas Dauphas collaborated on a publication in Nature Astronomy led by Miroslav Broz showing that torques acting on planetary embryos could have induced their convergence in a narrow annulus in the protoplanetary disk, explaining the small size of Mars. 

April 2021

1) Dr. Andy Heard defended his thesis and graduated. He is going to start a postdoctoral position at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts. Congratulations!  

December 2020

1) Sarah Aarons (postdoc 2017-2019) published a new paper in Science Advance "Titanium isotopes constrain a magmatic transition at the Hadean-Archean boundary in the Acasta Gneiss Complex". Congratulations Sarah! (News release at University of Chicago.) 

2) Socially distanced gathering on December 31st to celebrate the end of 2020 and the beginning of 2021.  

October 2020

1) Andrew Heard published a new paper in Science "Triple iron isotope constraints on the role of ocean iron sinks in early atmospheric oxygenation". Congratulations Andy! It is also featured in UChicagoNews

November 2019

1) This Sunday (Nov.3) Nicolas ran the Allstate Hot Chocolate 15k, Cindy and James ran their first 5k, way to go everyone! 

October 2019

1) Postdoctoral researcher Timo Hopp, graduate student Camilla(Xinyi) Liu and Andrew Regula join the Origins Lab. Welcome! 

2) Corliss Kin I Sio (PhD 2014) has been promoted to research scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Congratulations Corliss!   

3) The new paper "Vapor Drainage in the Protolunar Disk as the Cause for the Depletion in Volatile Elements of the Moon" is featured in UChicagoNews

4) Everyone had a great time in this year's lab retreat at Devil's Lake State Park. 

June 2019

1) Dr. Nicole (Xike) Nie defended her thesis and graduated. She is going to start a postdoctoral position at Carnegie Institute for Science in Washington D.C.. Congratulations!

2) We had a nice group picnic beside Lake Michigan to celebrate completion of this academic year and Dr. Nie's successful defense! (picture credit: Jennika Greer)

March 2019

1) Nicolas has been awarded as a Geochemical Fellow in 2019 from the Geochemical Society and the European Association of Geochemistry. Congratulations Nicolas!  

November 2018

1) Nicolas Greber (postdoc 2015-2017) received the 2018 Paul Niggli Medal (Switzerland's most prestigious "young scientist award" in the Earth Sciences). Congratulations Nick!   

October 2018

1) Sarah Aarons and Nicolas Dauphas ran the 2018 Chicago Marathon this Sunday (Oct.7th). Recovering from a stress fracture, Sarah was still able to run a Boston Qualifying time. Nicolas ran his first marathon below 3 hours (2h59m07s). Mens sana in corpore sano! 

September 2018

1) The new paper about a data reduction software SciPhon which is used to reduce data acquired by Nuclear Resonant Inelastic X-ray Scattering (NRIXS) has been published in Journal of Synchrotron Radiation. The geochemical and cosmochemical implications of NRIXS measurements for Fe, Sn, Eu, Dy, and Kr isotope systematics have also been discussed in the article.  

2) Graduate student James(Zhe) Zhang joins the Origins Lab. Welcome!

May 2018

1) New collaborative research published in Nature, which analysed three oxygen isotopes in shales, shows evidence of the rapid emergence of subaerial landmasses and onset of a modern hydrologic cycle 2.5 billion years ago. The new paper is featured in UChicagoNews.

February 2018

1) The Origins Lab get a patent issued and the invention provides a high-performance liquid chromatography system. Thanks to the contributions of Nicolas, Francois, Reika, Thomas and Justin! Congratulations!

December 2017

1) The new paper "Triggered Star Formation inside the Shell of a Wolf-Rayet Bubble as the Origin of the Solar System" is featured in UChicagoNews.

November 2017

1) Francois Tissot (PhD 2015) will start as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences at Caltech. Congratulations Francois!

October 2017

1) Postdoctoral researcher Sarah Aarons, graduate student Hao Zeng join the Origins Lab. Welcome!

September 2017

1) Nicolas Greber (postdoc 2015-2017) published a new paper in Science providing Titanium isotopic evidence for felsic crust and plate tectonics 3.5 billion years ago. Congratulations Nick! 

(News release at University of ChicagoLive ScienceScientific American, and Chemistry World.)

July 2017

1) Nicolas' paper on the isotopic nature of the Earth's accreting material through time is featured in an article on Quanta magazine.

2) Christoph Burkhardt's paper on the building blocks of planet Earth is featured in an article on CosmoSparks.

3) Aryavart Anand, a fifth year student of Integrated MTech (Geological Technology) at Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, successfully complete the two-month internship at Origins Lab. Congratulations!


May 2017

1) Nicolas Dauphas has been named as a finalist for the 2017 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists. Congratulations Nicolas!

2) Be careful about drinking the coffee at group meetings! You'd never guess, there was a fish in the Origins Lab percolator...

3) Andy Heard (Origins Lab), Drew Carhart (The Field Museum), and Jennika Greer (University of Chicago and the Field Museum) show off the selection of terrestrial and extraterrestrial samples used at the French Science Fest to educate about the origin and history of our planet.

4) Matous Ptacek lectures high-school students about the fundamentals of the rock cycle, exploring how rocks are formed in volcanic processes and how they are subsequently altered through prolonged exposure to the varied surface environments of the Earth.  

Feburary 2017

1) New collaborative research published in Nature Communications reveals that the Earth's unique iron composition isn't linked to the formation of the planet's core, calling into question a prevailing theory about the events that shaped our planet during its earliest years.

December 2016

1) Non-Traditional Stable Isotopes Workshop at Berkeley coorganized by Nicolas Dauphas, Fang-Zhen Teng and James M. Watkins

2) Nicole Nie's paper on iron UV photo oxidation: implications for early Earth and Mars is featured in an article on CosmoSparks.  

September 2016

1) Graduate students Andrew Heard, Matous Ptacek join the Origins Lab. Welcome!

June 2016

1) Francois Tissot received the 2015 Nininger Meteorite Award, given by the ASU Center for Meteorite Studies. Congratulations Francois!

May 2016

1) Nicolas Dauphas received the award for the best scientific paper about applications of isotopes, published in 2014, given by French Society of Isotopes. La Société Française des isotopes décerné le PRIX DU MEILLEUR ARTICLE SCIENTIFIQUE publié en 2014 à Nicolas Dauphas. Congratulations Nicolas!

April 2016

1) Marc-Alban Millet is now Lecturer in isotope geochemistry at Cardiff University, UK. Congratulations Marc-Alban!

March 2016

1) In a paper published this month in Science Advances, Tissot et al. show that 247Cm was present in meteorites at a level consistent with a single stellar environment of r-process nucleosynthesis. The news was featured in UChicago News and AAAS. Congratulations!

December 2015

1) Dr. Francois Tissot (who defended his thesis in Octorber) graduated and found a postdoctoral position at MIT. Congratulations!

November 2015

1) Vincent Busigny (postdoc 2005-2006) successfully defended his "Habilitation a Diriger des Recherches" at IPGP (a requirement in France to be promoted to Professor). Congratulations Vincent; way to go!

August 2015

1) Nicolas Dauphas's paper on the chemistry of the Earth and the silicon content of its core was featured as Editors' Choice in Science

2) Graduate student Cindy (Xi) Chen joins the Origins Lab.

June 2015

1) Nicolas Dauphas is awarded the "Prix SFIS du meilleur article 2014" from the French Isotope Society for his paper:" Magma redox and structural controls on iron isotope variations in Earth's mantle and crust". Congratulations! 

2) Follow the Origins Lab on Tsu for updates on our latest publications!

May 2015

1) Nicole Nie has been awarded a NASA fellowship to study the origin of the Moon. Congratulations!

2) Nicolas Dauphas gave the Spitzer lectures at Princeton.

January 2015

1) François Tissot has been awarded a LPI Career Development Award. Congratulations!

2) Postdoctoral researcher Nicolas Greber joins the Origins Lab.

September 2014

1) The first Origns Lab Workshop took place from september 11th to 15th, in Algoma (WI). Thank you to all who participated in the event! (Below, Kayal field trip to the Door County Caves, with current and former lab members)

2) Graduate student Justin (Jingya) Hu joins the Origins Lab.

July 2014

2) OrLab Chromatography LLC filed the final U.S. Patent Application for the PF-HPLC.

1) Corliss (Kin I) Sio successfully defended her thesis, titlted "Cooling and crystallization histories of magmatic bodies from in-situ Mg-Fe isotopic analyses in zoned olivines". Congratulations! (From left to right: Corliss Sio, F. Richter, M. Roskosz and N. Dauphas)

January 2014

Liping Qin - former graduate student at the Origins Lab, now professor of geochemistry at the University of Science and Technology of China - is the recipient of the Houtermans Medal, European Association for Geochemistry. Congratulations!

See also: Chinese Academy of Science, and Nature: Careers.

November 2013

Fang-Zhen Teng - former postdoc. at the Origins Lab, now associate professor at the University of Washington, Seattle - is the recipient of the Mineralogical Society of America Award. Congratulations!

September 2013

1) A Nature article on the sulfur isotopic composition of Earth's mantle is featured in a News & Views by Nicolas Dauphas.

2) Graduate student Nicole (Xike) Nie joins the Origins Lab.

July 2013

1) OrLab Chromatography (a company created by N. Dauphas, F.L.H. Tissot, T.J. Ireland and R. Yokochi) filed a U.S. Provisional Patent Application for the PF-HPLC.

2) Haolan Tang successfully defended her thesis, titled "60Fe-60Ni systematics in the solar protoplanetary disk", and is now Doctor Haolan Tang. Congratulations!

May 2013

1) Corliss Sio has been awarded a NASA fellowship to finish her PhD and study the thermal history of martian meteorites. Congratulations!

2) Hiroshi Kobayashi and Nicolas Dauphas's paper about how small planetesimals formed Mars is featured in an article at Space.com.

3) Paul Craddock's paper about Fe isotopic composition of the mantle and its bearing on models of mantle melting, core segregation, and Moon formation, is featured in News and Views of Nature.

March 2013

Christoph Burkhardt has been awarded the Pellas-Ryder award (best student planetary science paper) jointly sponsored by the Meteoritical Society and the GSA. Congratulations!

February 2013

Postdoctoral researcher Christoph Burkhardt joins the Origins Lab. Welcome!

January 2013

Corliss K.I. Sio received an Outsanding Student Paper Award for her presentation at the 2012 AGU Meeting. Congratulations!

December 2012

Exploding star missing from formation of Solar System.

UChicago News

Science Editors' choice.

October 2012

The Origins Lab is now on Flickr

September 2012

Dr. Junjun Zhang (who defended her thesis in July) graduated and found a postdoctoral position at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (Department of Civil & Structural engineering, Environmental Engineering Unit). Congratulations! (From left to right: Junjun Zhang and N. Dauphas)

July 2012

Nicolas Dauphas has been promoted to professor. Long overdue. Congratulations!

May 2012

Postdoctoral researcher Marc-Alban Millet joins the Origins Lab. Welcome!

March 2012

Titanium parternity test fingers Earth as moon's sole parent. See http://geosci.uchicago.edu/

The news was featured in:

University of Chicago News

Chicago Tribune



and the New York Times.

October 2011

Thomas Ireland, Research Associate at the Origins Laboratory, has accepted a position of Lab Manager at Boston University, Department of Earth Sciences. Congratulations!

September 2011

Nicolas Dauphas is the recipient of the Macelwane Medal, American Geophysical Union. Video on Youtube

June 2011

Paul Craddock, Research Associate at the Origins Laboratory, has accepted a position at the Schlumberger-Doll Research in Cambridge MA. Congratulations!

May 2011

A paper describing the fast growth of Mars and the implication for its status as a planetary embryo is published in Nature.

August 2010

A paper describing the discovery of presolar nanoparticles from supernovae in meteorites is in press in the Astrophysical Journal.

July 2010

The Origins Lab has a new logo and is on facebook.

September 2009

A paper describing how iron isotopes could be used to trace the redox conditions of mantle melting has been accepted in Earth and Planetary Science Letters (Iron isotopes may reveal the redox conditions of mantle melting from Archean to Present, see Articles section). Postdoctocal researcher Tom Ireland and graduate student Francois Tissot join the Origins Lab.

November 2008

Ali Pourmand, Research Associate at the Origins Laboratory, has accepted a position of Assistant Professor at the University of Miami, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. Congratulations!

May 2008

The first article generated by the Neptune MC-ICPMS has been accepted at Astrophysical Journal (Iron-60 evidence for early injection and efficient mixing of stellar debris in the protosolar nebula, see Articles section).

February 2008

Nicolas Dauphas is the recipient of the Houtermans Medal, European Association for Geochemistry.

January 2008

After completion of his postdoc at the OL, Fang-Zhen Teng moved to an assistant professor position at the University of Arkansas, Department of Geosciences. Congratulations!

October 2007

Nicolas Dauphas is the recipient of a Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering.

February 2007

Installation of the Neptune MC-ICPMS has been completed.

January 2007

Nicolas Dauphas and Vincent Busigny have published 2 papers presenting new applications of Fe isotope systematics (see Articles section). In one of these papers, the authors showed that paleofluid circulations can be traced using variations in the isotopic composition of iron. In the other, iron isotopes were used to identify the protoliths of heavily metamorphosed chemical sediments (BIFs) in a recently discovered >3.75 Ga supracrustal belt located in Northern Quebec.

December 2006

A Neptune MC-ICPMS has been delivered at the Origins Laboratory. We hope to have it fully operational by the end of January.

May 2006

A review paper on Fe isotope systematics has been published. It contains a compilation of Fe isotope measurements in geostandards and theoretical developments on multiphase isotope distillation and the theory of isotopic fractionation during phase growth in a diffusion-limited regime. [Mass Spectrometry Reviews 25, 515-550].

April-May 2006

After completion of his postdoc at the OL, Vincent Busigny went back to France. On April 10, he became the father of Lucas. On May 9, he obtained an assistant professor position at the prestigious Institut de Physique du Globe in Paris. Congratulations!

March 2006

37th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. Liping Qin reported new measurements of W isotopes in iron meteorites. Vincent Busigny showed how iron isotopes in hematite concretions can be used to infer the direction and scale of paleofluid flows. Nicolas Dauphas reported Fe isotope measurements in recently discovered >3.76 Ga BIFs from Northern Quebec.

September 2005

68th Annual Meeting of the Meteoritical Society. Liping Qin reported new measurements of W isotopes in iron meteorites to estimate the timing of metal silicate differentiation in asteroids. Vincent Busigny showed how iron isotopes can be used to decipher the formation history of hematite spherical concretions from Utah, which are some of the best terrestrial analogues of martian blueberries. Nicolas Dauphas presented a new method to determine the age of the Milky Way and the U/Th production ratio in stars.

July 2005

Vincent Busigny and Nicolas Dauphas went on a field trip in Utah to collect moqui marbles, which are spherical hematite concretions that share similarities with martian blueberries.

June 2005

Nicolas Dauphas presented a new method to determine the age of the Milky Way (14.5 Gyr) and the U/Th production ratio in stars (0.571) based on measurements of meteorites and low metallicity stars from the halo of the Galaxy [Nature 435, 1203-1205].

December 2004

Nicolas Dauphas and colleagues from Nancy (France) and Chicago (USA) reported Fe isotope measurements of controversial metamorphic rocks from southern West Greenland (Isua, Akilia, and Innersuartuut) dated at around 3.8-3.9 Gyr BP. These results show that the rocks are sedimentary in origin. The isotopic variations are compatible with the transport, oxidation, and subsequent precipitation of ferrous iron emanating from hydrothermal vents [Science 306, 2077-2080].