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Research at the Earth and Planets Laboratory stretches from our world to the edge of the universe.

Research Questions

We aim to discover new worlds, observe and understand the path from dust and gas to planets, illuminate the history and inner workings of Earth and other planets and understand how their surface environments form and evolve, determine the properties of planetary materials at the extreme pressures and temperatures of planetary interiors and create new materials of benefit to mankind.


We combine a broad range of traditional disciplines to investigate fundamental questions ranging from the galactic to the atomic in scale, and which are best solved by integrating the many viewpoints of our scientists that together reveal the complexity and interconnectivity of the processes that determined the current state of Earth and other planets.

Our Research Areas

Project Highlights

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MUSICA: Modeling, Uplift, Seismology, and Igneous geochemistry in the Colombian Andes

MUSICA is an international team of Earth scientists who are combining their respective research strengths in seismology, geochemistry/geochronology, basin analysis, structure, tectonics, thermochronology, and geodynamics to study the unique tectonic setting present today in Colombia in order to gain a better understanding not only of the evolution of the Colombian continent but continental evol

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Carnegie Planets

The Carnegie Planets Project combines astronomy, astrophysics, cosmo- and planetary chemistry, planetary physics and dynamics, experimental and theoretical petrology, and mineral physics to answer fundamental questions about the nature of exoplanetary solar systems and the characteristics that lead rocky planets to have clement surfaces suitable for the development of life.

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EPL unites two Carnegie departments (Department of Terrestrial Magnetism and the Geophysical Laboratory) with century-long traditions of making new observations of the natural world, experimentally investigating the properties of the material from which it is made and developing theory to understand complex natural phenomenon.

Historic Highlights