Richard Carlson became the Director of the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism in 2014. In 2019, he oversaw the joining of the historic Department of Terrestrial Magnetism and Geophysical Laboratory to form the Earth and Planets Laboratory. Under his guidance, the division has hired its first three staff scientists, as well as two cohorts of incoming postdocs. Carlson’s steady and capable leadership has been further amplified throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, enabling the division to carry out a robust portfolio of on-site research while maintaining a high level of safety across campus.

    Carlson leaves a legacy of scientific excellence in his research on the formation of the Solar System and the geologic history of Earth. He joined Carnegie as a postdoctoral fellow in 1980 and was named a Staff Scientist the following year. He is widely recognized for his use of isotope geochemistry to understand the origin and evolution of the early Solar System, the Moon, and the Earth’s continental crust. He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the American Geophysical Union, and the Geochemical Society.


    Richard Carlson on Granite Pk. Santa Rosas (CH82-15)

    Carlson looks back on 41 years

    "As the year ends, the desire to reflect on the past always surfaces.  In this letter, I’ll be looking further back than usual as my 41 years of employment as a postdoc, staff scientist, and director at the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism (DTM) and now the Earth and Planets Laboratory (EPL) are coming to a close."

    Read Rick's Letter open_in_new