Kenneth A. Farley
W.M. Keck Foundation Professor of Geochemistry
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.
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.
Chemical Petrology; Environmental Geochemistry; Extraterrestrial Geochemistry/Cosmochemistry; Stable Isotope Geochemistry;
Ge 217. Radiogenic Isotopes Seminar. 6 units (3-0-3); third term, 2022-23. Prerequisites: Ge 140 b or permission of instructor. The course deals with advanced topics in radiogenic isotope geochemistry and builds on Ge 140 b, addressing unconventional applications of radioisotopes as well as treating several conventional radiogenic systems in more detail. Topics to be covered will be guided by class interests. Given in alternate years; not offered 2022-23.