Current Research Opportunities for Graduate and Undergraduate Students

Current Research Opportunities

Openings for Graduate and Undergraduate Students

Graduate Research Opportunities

A selection of current research opportunities for prospective graduate students is listed here. If the topic or potential advisor you are seeking is not listed here, please contact a faculty member directly for information regarding available projects and positions.

Exoplanet Populations

Professor Ilaria Pascucci (

A research opportunity is available for a student to study populations of exoplanets and planetary systems. In this project, data from several exoplanet surveys will be used to constrain models of planetary system architectures and gain new insight on how these systems form and evolve. 

The student will be advised by Professor Ilaria Pascucci and co-mentored by LPL graduate student Galen Bergsten (, in collaboration with Regents Professor Renu Malhotra, Dr. Jeremy Dietrich, and Dr. Gijs Mulders.

Ice Flow on Mars

Professor Shane Byrne (

A graduate research opportunity is available for a student to investigate glacial features on Mars. The project includes generation of stereo Digital Terrain Models from HiRISE data and modeling of ice flow with finite-element models. This is a joint endeavor between the University of Arizona and the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) focused on Solar System Habitability. Extensive collaboration with our French colleagues is expected.


Martian Surface and Subsurface Studies

Associate Professor Lynn Carter (

A graduate research opportunity is available for a student to use Mars radar data sets to study Mars volcanism, sediments, and surface evolution. The student will also be involved in mission teams such as Mars2020 RIMFAX and /or Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter SHARAD, and they will contribute to data acquisition and analysis. 

Planetary Analogs and Planetary Surfaces

Associate Professor Christopher Hamilton (

A graduate research opportunity is available for one or more students to become involved with aspects of planetary analog research and remote sensing to explore and model aspects of planetary volcanism and related geologic surface processes. 

A second graduate research opportunity is available to research cryomagma viscosity, ascent processes, and eruption dynamics on icy satellites.

Tides in Planets and Moons

Professor Isamu Matsuyama (

I am seeking a graduate student with a strong physics background. The position is supported by a NASA Solar System Workings grant for a project to (1) explore  the effect of lateral heterogeneities in the tidal response of planets and moons, (2) asses if lateral heterogeneities can be detected by future missions (e.g., JUICE, Europa Clipper) and (3) investigate their role in interior evolution. 

Undergraduate Research Opportunities

Arizona Space Grant

Can you imagine yourself working with a faculty mentor to develop a lunar rover controlled over the internet? To study the effects of zero-gravity on muscles and other organ systems? To devise a system for "mining" fuel from the Martian atmosphere? Or to study the effects of climatic and other changes on planet Earth? Imagine no more. The UA/NASA Space Grant Program will employ undergraduate students for 10-20 hours per week during the academic year to work alongside upper-level graduate students and practicing scientists.

ASTEROIDS Laboratory

Providing undergraduates majoring in science and engineering, especially those traditionally underrepresented in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, the opportunity to broaden their education with a rich, hands-on experience and the full process of inquiry and discovery. Research and education will focus on utilizing planetary science principles for conceiving, implementing and validating space technologies, from systems design and control solutions, to robots and sensor networks, to mobility and excavation on small bodies.

UArizona Graduate College Undergraduate Research Opportunities Consortium

The University of Arizona Graduate College administers the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Consortium (UROC), a group of ten research programs.