Marisa C. Palucis

|Assistant Professor
Academic Appointments

Assistant Professor of Earth Sciences

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My research group investigates the evolution of landscapes and sedimentary deposits under a changing climate. Our work has implications for constraining the rates and histories of aqueous processes on paleo-landscapes and other planetary surfaces (like Mars!) and hazard prediction and mitigation during extreme events. The former is a prerequisite for understanding where and when life could have evolved within our solar system. My group integrates sedimentological, topographic, and climatic datasets from the field with physical experiments and modeling, as geologically significant flow events are often difficult and/or impossible to observe. This combination allows us to bridge from the particle- to landscape-scale, which is necessary to test hypotheses for landscape evolution and paleoenvironment. Active research areas include: 1) what was the timing and duration of water flow on Mars; 2) how do Arctic landscapes respond to climate change?; 3) what controls channel morphology and sediment transport rates in steep streams; and 4) how and where do debris flow initiate?


Fairchild, Room 203
HB 6105


Earth Sciences


  • B.S. University of South Carolina, Columbia
  • Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley

Selected Publications

  • Palucis MC, Morgan AM, *Rivera-Hernandez F, Marshall J, *Menio E, **Miller R, and Strauss JV, Rates and processes controlling periglacial alluvial fan formation: Implications for martian fans, GSA Bulletin, in press

  • Harris CM, *Maclay MT, *Lutz K, Nathan V, *Ortega Dominguez N, Leavitt WD, and Palucis MC, Remote and In-situ Characterization of Mars Analogs: Coupling Scales to Improve the Search for Microbial Signatures on Mars, Frontiers in Astronomy and Space Science, 26 April 2022,

  • Putnam A and Palucis MC, The Hydrogeomorphic History of Garu Crater: Implications and Constraints on the Timing of Large Late-Stage Lakes in the Gale Crater Region, JGR-Planets, 126(5), 10.1029/2020JE006688

  • Roseborough V, Horvath D, and Palucis MC, 2021, Was Gale Crater Connected to a Regionally Extensive Groundwater System?, Geophys. Res. Lett, 48(6), 10.1029/2020GL092107

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