Jonathan Levine is a planetary physicist. Over the years, he has conducted experiments with lunar samples, meteorites, and extra-solar mineral grains (and yes, a few “garden variety” rocks from the Earth). He is part of a small team developing a rock-dating spectrometer that is both compact enough and reliable enough to fly on a space mission to the Moon or Mars. Such a tool would answer first-order science questions about planetary history, such as how long early Mars stayed warm and wet, and whether or not the giant impact basins on the Moon were created in a late heavy bombardment of meteoroids in the inner Solar System. Jonathan enjoys teaching mechanics (after all, what good is the Solar System if not as a playground for the ideas of Newton, Lagrange, and Hamilton?), but confesses to love teaching all areas of physics – and especially to revealing unanticipated connections among disparate natural phenomena.
Last modified 4 months ago
Associate Professor of Physics
Areas of Expertise
I am happy to give lectures, seminars, or colloquia on the physics of the Earth and the Solar System to audiences studying physics/astronomy/geology, or to general audiences. I can speak about designing a novel spaceflight instrument, how we learn the ages of rocks (which are my research specialties), or general-interest topics like the physics of the greenhouse effect.
Planets, Physics, Greenhouse effect