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The University of Tennessee

Earth and Planetary Sciences

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Devon M. Burr

Assistant Professor

Planetary Science

My research in planetary science is in the field of planetary geomorphology. I specialize in how fluid flow or fluid phase change may have shaped planetary surfaces and what those surface shapes can tell us about the geologic history of that body. Most commonly, I approach a research question through analysis of spacecraft images, augmented with field work on terrestrial analogues.

My dissertation focused on young flood channels on Mars and their bedforms, using similar bedforms found in the Channeled Scabland and Icelandic flood channels to constrain the Martian flood flow conditions. From this basis, I became interested in ground ice features, working with Canadian and Alaskan colleagues to assess the distribution of pingos on Mars. Current research includes the on-going mapping and characterization of Mars’ largest population of sinuous ridges, using terrestrial inverted fluvial channels and glacial eskers as analogues.

Though most of my research has been on Mars, two new projects focus on Titan, the surprisingly Earth-like moon of Saturn. One of these projects involves analysis of multiple datasets from the Cassini mission to the Saturnian system to map and characterize fluvial features on Titan’s surface. The other project entails the refurbishment and use of NASA’s planetary aeolian laboratory to determine the atmospheric conditions and wind speeds responsible for Titan’s vast aeolian dunes.

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Devon Burr

Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences
1412 Circle Drive
Knoxville, TN 37996-1410
Phone: (865) 974-6010