AbGradCon @ Bioastronomy 2007
Program & Invited Speaker

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Program & Invited Speaker

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The meeting will be composed of approximately 20 talks, spread over 1.5 days and including several overview talks given by late-stage graduate students and early post-docs. Additionally, we will hold several panel discussions with a diverse mix of participants in order to discuss topics critical to early career scientists, ranging from job prospects and methods for obtain positions to the future of astrobiology research and the direction of NASA. The tentative schedule is below.

Date Estimated Time Activity
Friday Evening:   Group excursion to a bioluminescent bay
Details TBA (Est. Departure ~ 7pm)
Saturday July 14 10:00am - 1:00pm Check-in and Registration
  1:00pm - 1:30pm Opening Remarks
  1:30pm - 3:30pm Session 1: "Seeds of Habitability: From Dust to Planets"
40-min Overview, Rory Barnes
Research Talks (20 min):
Eduardo de la Fuente Acosta, “Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH’s) in Massive Star Formation Regions”
David Harrington, “The Near-Star Environment: Spectropolarimetry of Herbig Ae/Be Stars”
Amanda Morrow, “Evidence of Planet Formation around Young Brown Dwarfs”
Boncho Bonev, “Comets and Astrobiology”
  3:30pm - 4:00pm Coffee & Posters
  4:00pm - 6:20pm Session 2: “Understanding Habitability in Diverse Planetary Environments”
Overview (40 min): Melissa Trainer
Research Talks (20 min):
Mark Claire, “Sulfate, Methane, and the rise of Oxygen”
Helen DeWitt, “The effect of increased hydrogen mixing ratio on organic haze production on the early Earth”
Catherine Neish, “Rate measurements of the hydrolysis of laboratory made tholins: Implications for prebiotic chemistry on Titan”
Inge ten Kate, “Titan surface simulations for Huygens GCMS data calibration”
  6:20pm - 6:30pm Last Words
  7:00pm - Dinner & Ice-breaker Social Event

Sunday July 15 8:30am - 9:15am Coffee and Breakfast
  9:15am - 11:15am Session 3: “Origin and Evolution of Life in Extreme Environments”
Overview (40 min): Jennifer Biddle
Research Talks (20 min):
Marina Antonio, “Model Environment for Early Earth Planetary History Harbors New Deeply Divergent Microbial Divisions”
Amy Perkins, “Evolution of terrestrial bacteria in Mars environment: Isolation and characterization of rpoB mutations in Bacillus subtilis spores exposed to simulated Mars atmosphere”
Jackie Denson, “Sulfate Reduction: A model for subsurface Martian life”
Todd Sformo, “Overwintering Physiology of the Beetle Cucujus clavipes in Sub-Arctic and Arctic Alaska (64 – 67 _N latitude): Roles of Antifreeze Proteins, Polyols, and Dehydration”
  11:15am - 11:30am Break
  11:30am - 12:30pm Panel Discussion: “Realities and Practicalities For AB Grads/PDs”
  12:30pm - 1:30pm On-site Lunch
  1:30pm - 1:50pm Astrobiology in Education & Public Outreach
Leigh Arino de la Rubia, “Development, Evaluation, and Dissemination of an Astrobiology Curriculum for Secondary Students: Establishing a successful model for increasing the use of scientific data by underrepresented students”
  1:50pm - 2:30pm ABGrad Community Resources Working Group
  2:30pm - 3:15pm Coffee & Poster session
  3:15pm - 5:15pm Session 4: “Searching for Life in the Solar System and Beyond”
Overview (40 min): Geronimo Villanueva
Research Talks (20 min):
Andrew Czaja, “Fine-scale analysis of fossil kerogen”
Pablo Sobron, “Practical use of LIBS and Raman spectroscopy in Exo/Astrobiology: Rio Tinto (SW Spain) environment”
Colin Goldblatt, “Bistability of atmospheric oxygen and the Great Oxidation: implications for life detection”
Francisco Ramos-Stierle, “Preparing for Kepler: Simulating Stellar Microvariability"
  5:15pm - 5:30pm Closing Remarks
  Scheduled Posters Faik Bouhrik, “The Drake Equation from a Paleobiological Perspective”
Dimitra Atri, “Terrestrial Effects of a Nearby Supernova”
Brandon Lawton, “Searching for the Precursors of Life in External Galaxies”
Eric Korpela, “Statistics of One: What Earth can and can't tell us about life in the Universe”
Damhnait Gleeson, “Biogeochemical Characterization of a Sulfur-rich Arctic Ecosystem”
Christa Hasenkopf, “Exploring the Direct Effect of Organic Haze Particles on Early Earth Climate”
David Harrington, “Spectropolarimetry of the Deep Impact comet 9P/Tempel 1”
Todd Sformo, “Ice-Nucleating Agent(s) in the Freeze-Tolerant Beetle Upis ceramboides”
Sam Abbas, “Is Titan Too Cold to Support Biotic Systems?”