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Malynda Chizek

Research/Teaching Assistant
Entered: 2007
Office: 101 Astronomy
Phone: (575)646-4438
Fax: (575)646-1602
 
E-mail: mchizek
(append "@nmsu.edu")
 
Photo
M.S.New Mexico State University,2011
B.S. University of Iowa, 2007

Research

I began my graduate studies in June 2007, as a member of the planetary group working with Dr. Jim Murphy. Over the summer I worked with a Mars Global Climate Model (NASA Ames GCM) and developed a program to compare the model results with results from TES on MGS. In Spring 2008, I began working with the GITM (or MWACM) model in development by the University of Michigan, comparing the results of the 1-D GITM with the Ames GCM 1-D results.

Currently I am using the 3-D Ames GCM to model the behavior of methane and other trace gases in the Martian atmosphere, in terms of source magnitude and activity period and the removal timescale. I am using the model to attempt to constrain and reproduce the results of both Earth-based and space-based observations which have detected absorption at wavelengths of known methane bands. I am also using Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer data to map the spatial and temporal distribution of Martian methane.


Undergraduate Work

I was a summer research assistant at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Socorro, NM during 2006. I worked with Dr. Bryan Butler to create a radar map of the Martian surface, reducing and analyzing data collected by using the Goldstone 70-meter antenna as a transmitter and the Very Large Array (VLA) as a receiver during the 2003 Mars opposition. I focused upon the lava flows in the Elysium and Tharsis volcanic regions, to understand their strong, yet varied, reflectivity at 3.5 cm by evaluating age, composition, and morphology variations between the regions.

I have also worked with Dr. Cornelia Lang and Allison Mercer at the University of Iowa, analyzing 8.5 and 22.5 GHz radio observations of seven luminous blue variable sources, massive stars within an important, but short-lived, evolutionary phase marked by extreme mass-loss events. My honors thesis was based on these data, and examined the compact and nebular structures associated with the stellar source AFGL 2298. I determined the spectral index of the radio emission and calculated mass-loss rates, and examined the associated expansion into the surrounding interstellar medium.

I have also conducted a number of group research projects in the field of radio astronomy, with resources available while an undergraduate at the University of Iowa. I used the University of Iowa 10-foot Small Radio Telescope (SRT) to map neutral hydrogen along the spiral arm structures of the Galactic Plane, and my classmates and I obtained VLA time to observe a radio galaxy and a supernova remnant.

I am quite interested in planetary science and in astrobiology, including the possibility of finding fossilized bacterial remains, and in particular in the planet Mars.

I am pleased to acknowledge support from a Consortium for Higher Education HED Fellowship for women in the sciences, and New Mexico Space Grant.

Meetings

February 2011: Fourth International Workshop on the Mars Atmosphere: Modeling and Observations, Mapping the Methane on Mars: Seasonal Comparison
M.R. Chizek, J.R. Murphy, S. Fonti, G.A. Marzo, M.A. Kahre, T.L. Roush

October 2010: American Astronomical Society Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, Investigation of the Destruction Lifetime of Martian Atmospheric Methane
M.R. Chizek, J.R. Murphy, R.M. Haberle, M.A. Kahre

March 2010: Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, A Short-Lived Trace Gas in the Martian Atmospehre: A General Circulation Model of the Likelihood of Methane
M.R. Chizek, J.R. Murphy, M.A. Kahre, R.M. Haberle, G.A. Marzo

December 2009: American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, A Short-Lived Trace Gas in the Martian Atmosphere: A General Circulation Model of the Likelihood of Methane
M.R. Chizek, J.R. Murphy, M.A. Kahre, R.M. Haberle, G.A. Marzo

November 2009: Workshop for Methane on Mars, A Short-Lived Trace Gas in the Martian Atmosphere: A General Circulation Model fo the Likelihood of Methane
M.R. Chizek, J.R. Murphy, M.A. Kahre, R.M. Haberle, G.A. Marzo

October 2009: American Astronomical Society Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, Simulating Trace Gas Production, Transport, and Removal in the Martian Atmosphere
Malynda R. Chizek, J.R. Murphy, M.A. Kahre, R.M. Haberle

October 2008: American Astronomical Society Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, Mars Atmospheric Profiles: An Assessment
Malynda R. Chizek, Stephen S. Bussard, James R. Murphy

June 2008: International Planetary Probe Workshop, The Martian Atmosphere: Comparison with a Numerical Model
M.R. Chizek, S.S. Bussard, J.R. Murphy

January 2007: American Astronomical Society meeting, High Resolution Radio Observations of the Nebulae of Luminous Blue Variable Stars
A. Mercer, M. Chizek, C. C. Lang, D. F. Figer, & P. Najarro

October 2006: American Astronomical Society Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, Goldstone/VLA 3.5-cm Mars Radar Observations - Volcanic Regions
M. R. Chizek, B. J. Butler, M. A. Slade, A. F. Haldemann, D. O. Muhleman, & T. F. Mao

October 2006: American Astronomical Society Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, Goldstone/VLA 3.5cm Mars Radar Observations - "Stealths" and South Polar Regions
B. J. Butler, M. R. Chizek, M. A. Slade, A. F. Haldemann, D. O. Muhleman, & T. F. Mao

Teaching

Spring 2012
ASTR 105: The Planets M02 & M03
Spring 2008 - Fall 2010, Fall 2011
ASTR 105: The Planets
Fall 2007
ASTR 301G: Revolutionary Ideas in Science

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