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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Mime Type
  • application/pdf
Date Range
2011 2018


The origin of the solar system and formation of planets such as Earth are among the most fascinating, outstanding scientific problems. From theoretical models to natural observations, it is possible to infer a general way of how the solar system evolved from the gravitational collapse of the molecular cloud to accretion and differentiation of planetary-sized bodies. This dissertation attempts to place additional constraints on the source, distribution, and evolution of chemical variability in the early solar system, Mars, and Earth. A new method was developed for the measurement of titanium isotopes in calcium-aluminum-rich inclusions (CAIs) by laser ablation multi-collector inductively …

Contributors
Williams, Curtis Davis, Wadhwa, Meenakshi, McNamara, Allen K, et al.
Created Date
2014

The presence of a number of extinct radionuclides in the early Solar System (SS) is known from geochemical and isotopic studies of meteorites and their components. The half-lives of these isotopes are short relative to the age of the SS, such that they have now decayed to undetectable levels. They can be inferred to exist in the early SS from the presence of their daughter nuclides in meteoritic materials that formed while they were still extant. The extinct radionuclides are particularly useful as fine-scale chronometers for events in the early SS. They can also be used to help constrain the …

Contributors
Spivak-Birndorf, Lev Jacob, Wadhwa, Meenakshi, Hervig, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2012

Impact cratering has played a key role in the evolution of the solid surfaces of Solar System bodies. While much of Earth’s impact record has been erased, its Moon preserves an extensive history of bombardment. Quantifying the timing of lunar impact events is crucial to understanding how impacts have shaped the evolution of early Earth, and provides the basis for estimating the ages of other cratered surfaces in the Solar System. Many lunar impact melt rocks are complex mixtures of glassy and crystalline “melt” materials and inherited clasts of pre-impact minerals and rocks. If analyzed in bulk, these samples can …

Contributors
Mercer, Cameron Mark, Hodges, Kip V, Robinson, Mark S, et al.
Created Date
2017

Hydrogen isotope compositions of the martian atmosphere and crustal materials can provide unique insights into the hydrological and geological evolution of Mars. While the present-day deuterium-to-hydrogen ratio (D/H) of the Mars atmosphere is well constrained (~6 times that of terrestrial ocean water), that of its deep silicate interior (specifically, the mantle) is less so. In fact, the hydrogen isotope composition of the primordial martian mantle is of great interest since it has implications for the origin and abundance of water on that planet. Martian meteorites could provide key constraints in this regard, since they crystallized from melts originating from the …

Contributors
Tucker, Kera, Wadhwa, Meenakshi, Hervig, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2015

Molybdenum and uranium isotope variations are potentially powerful tools for reconstructing the paleoredox history of seawater. Reliable application and interpretation of these proxies requires not only detailed knowledge about the fractionation factors that control the distribution of molybdenum and uranium isotopes in the marine system, but also a thorough understanding of the diagenetic processes that may affect molybdenum and uranium isotopes entering the rock record. Using samples from the Black Sea water column, the first water column profile of 238U/235U variations from a modern euxinic basin has been measured. This profile allows the direct determination of the 238U/235U fractionation factor …

Contributors
Romaniello, Stephen, Anbar, Ariel, Hartnett, Hilairy, et al.
Created Date
2012

The beginning of our Solar System, including events such as the formation of the first solids as well as the accretion and differentiation of planetary bodies, is recorded in meteoritic material. This record can be deciphered using petrographic, geochemical and isotopic investigations of different classes of meteorites and their components. In this dissertation, I have investigated a variety of isotope systematics in chondritic and achondritic meteorites to understand processes that have shaped our Solar System. Specifically, the investigations conducted here are in two main areas: 1) Hydrogen isotope systematics in a meteorite representing the freshest known sample of the martian …

Contributors
Mane, Prajkta, Wadhwa, Meenakshi, Hervig, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2016

Shock metamorphism in meteorites constrains the impact histories of asteroids and planets. Shock-induced high-pressure (HP) minerals can provide more precise estimates of shock conditions than shock-induced deformation effects. In this research, I use shock features, particularly HP minerals, in ordinary-chondrite samples to constrain not only shock pressures but also the pressure-temperature-time (P-T-t) paths they experienced. Highly shocked L5/6 chondrites Acfer 040, Mbale, NWA 091 and Chico and LL6 chondrite NWA 757 were used to investigate a variety of shock pressures and post-shock annealing histories. NWA 757 is the only highly shocked LL chondrite that includes abundant HP minerals. The assemblage …

Contributors
Hu, Jinping, Sharp, Thomas G., Tyburczy, James A., et al.
Created Date
2016

The present work covers two distinct microanalytical studies that address issues in planetary materials: (1) Genesis Na and K solar wind (SW) measurements, and (2) the effect of water on high-pressure olivine phase transformations. NASA’s Genesis mission collected SW samples for terrestrial analysis to create a baseline of solar chemical abundances based on direct measurement of solar material. Traditionally, solar abundances are estimated using spectroscopic or meteoritic data. This study measured bulk SW Na and K in two different Genesis SW collector materials (diamond-like carbon (DlC) and silicon) for comparison with these other solar references. Novel techniques were developed for …

Contributors
Rieck, Karen Dianne, Hervig, Richard L, Sharp, Thomas G, et al.
Created Date
2015

The present understanding of the formation and evolution of the earliest bodies in the Solar System is based in large part on geochemical and isotopic evidences contained within meteorites. The differentiated meteorites (meteorites originating from bodies that have experienced partial to complete melting) are particularly useful for deciphering magmatic processes occurring in the early Solar System. A rare group of differentiated meteorites, the angrites, are uniquely suited for such work. The angrites have ancient crystallization ages, lack secondary processing, and have been minimally affected by shock metamorphism, thus allowing them to retain their initial geochemical and isotopic characteristics at the …

Contributors
Sanborn, Matthew Edward, Wadhwa, Meenakshi, Hervig, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2012

There is a growing body of evidence that the evolving redox structure of the oceans has been an important influence on the evolutionary trajectory of animals. However, current understanding of connections between marine redox conditions and marine extinctions and recoveries is hampered by limited detailed knowledge of the timing, duration, and extent of marine redox changes. The recent development of U isotopes (δ238U) in carbonates as a global ocean redox proxy has provided new insight into this problem. Reliable application and interpretation of the δ238U paleoproxy in geological records requires a thorough understanding of the reliability of δ238U recorded by …

Contributors
Zhang, Feifei, Anbar, Ariel, Gordon, Gwyneth, et al.
Created Date
2018