Roger Fu, MIT Graduate Alumnus

/ education /
BA in Earth and Planetary Sciences and Astrophysics, Harvard College 2009
PhD in Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, MIT 2015

/ description /
I joined the paleomagnetism lab in spring 2011. Most of my work revolves around understanding the early solar system, in particular the formation and evolution of the first solid bodies.

I am first and foremost a paleomagnetist, and my primary projects aim to measure some of the earliest solids in the solar system- chondritic meteorites- for a recording of the magnetic field of the primordial protosolar disk. The nature of these magnetic fields have broad implications for the dynamics of the protoplanetary disk and the style of accretion on both large and small scales. To make the necessary measurements, I have developed novel techniques that permit the measurement of extremely weak oriented paleomagnetic samples at the <100 µm scale.

Another set of paleomagnetic studies aims to recover the earliest record of the geodynamo by measuring the weak magnetizations of Hadean zircons from the Jack Hills of Australia. The techniques developed in pursuit of chondrule magnetization are well-suited to the adaption and improvement necessary to recover magnetic records from these challenging samples.

In 2011-2012, I completed a paleomagnetic study of several HED meteorites, which likely originate from the asteroid Vesta. Our measurements strongly suggest that this asteroid once harbored a magnetic core dynamo.

As for non-paleomagnetic techniques, I'm modeling the geodynamics of Vesta, which had a thin and heavily fractured lithosphere during its earliest history. Currently I am extending this work to Ceres, providing insights into its interior structure and composition.

In the past I have worked on melt migration on planetesimals, the interior dynamics of icy super-Earths, phyllosilicates on Mars, X-ray observations of distant galaxies, molecules in circumstellar envelopes, and the indigenous astronomy of the Pewenche people of South America. I still work on some of these topics part-time. Email me if you'd like to chat about anything on (or not on) this page!

/ personal homepage /

/ email /

/ mailing address /
77 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02139

/ phone numbers /
(845) 365-8337

/ curriculum vitae /

/ list of publications /

C.T. Russell, C.A. Raymond, E. Ammannito, D.L. Buczkowski, M.C. De Sanctis et al. (In press) Dawn arrives at Ceres: Exploration of a small volatile-rich world, Science

M.T. Bland, C.A. Raymond, R.R. Fu, P.M. Schenk, H. Kneissl et al. (In press) Composition and Structure of the Shallow Subsurface of Ceres as Revealed by Crater Morphology, Nat. Geosci.

S. Marchi, A. I. Ermakov, C. A. Raymond, R. R. Fu, et al. (In press) The missing large impact craters on Ceres, Nat. Commun.

R.R. Fu, E.D. Young, R.C. Greenwood, L.T. Elkins-Tanton (In press) Silicate melting and volatile loss during differentiation in planetesimals, In Planetesimals: Early Differentiation and Consequences for Planets. Cambridge Univ. Press

B.P. Weiss, A.C. Maloof, N. Tailby, J. Ramezani, R.R. Fu, et al. (2015) Pervasive remagnetization of detrital zircon host rocks in the Jack Hills, Western Australia and implications for records of the early geodynamo, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 430, 115-128

A. Scheinberg, R. R. Fu, L. T. Elkins-Tanton, B. P. Weiss (2015) Asteroid Differentiations: Metling and Large-Scale Structure., In: Asteroids vol. IV. Univ. Arizona Press.

R.R. Fu, B.P. Weiss, E.A. Lima, R.J. Harrison, X.-N. Bai, S.J. Desch, D.S. Ebel, C. Suavet, H. Wang, D. Glenn, D. Le Sage, T. Kasama, R.L. Walsworth, A.T. Kuan (2014) Solar nebula magnetic fields recorded in the Semarkona meteorite, Science, 346, 1089 / link /

R.R. Fu (in review) Stars through the Araucarias: Mapuche-Pewenche Ethnoastronomy, Chungará

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