Alumni Spotlight Page
Chloe Beddingfield Ph.D.
Chloe Beddingfield is a native Texan from Austin who enrolled in Texas Tech University in fall 2007 and graduated in Spring 2010. She earned a Bachelor's in Geosciences: Geology with a Chemistry minor. While at Texas Tech, Chloe's undergraduate research project with Dr. Aaron Yoshinobu involved investigating the tectonics and geomorphology of features on Saturn's moon, Enceladus.
After leaving Texas Tech, Chloe accepted a research assistantship at University of Tennessee where she received her Ph.D. in Geology in summer 2015 under the mentorship of Dr. Devon Burr. Their research included the investigation of impact craters and geodynamics of the Uranian and Saturian icy moons (Miranda, Dione, Tethys, Rhea). Following the completion of her PhD, Chloe then spend two years as a post doc with Dr. Jeff Moersch and Dr. Hap McSween studying thermal properties of impact craters on Mars using the THEMIS (Thermal Emission Imaging System) instrument onboard the Mars Odyssey spacecraft.
Currently, Chloe works for NASA as Research Scientist at The SETI Institute and NASA Ames Research Center in the Bay Area, California where she started in a CO-OP position. Being a research scientist allows for her to be involved with NASA mission work with the New Horizons extended mission to Kuiper belt object MU69 (Ultima Thule) and the OSIRIS-REx mission to asteroid Bennu. Chloe uses processing techniques to enhance available spacecraft images to derive digital elevation models of surfaces, and derive shape models of irregular bodies to carry out her research while contributing to other projects. In addition, she is working with the Regolith Development Working Group mapping regolith using the most recent OCAMS (OSIRIS-REx Camera Suite) images of asteroid Bennu as well as identifying other geologic features on Bennu.
As a member of the New Horizons team, Chloe has helped develop a method to create a shape model for Ultima Thule. Other recent work includes investigating mass movement features on Pluto's moon Charon. She investigated the properties of large landslides on Pluto's moon Charon and found they are “long run-out landslides” which underwent friction reduction during motion.
Ultima Thule captured by NASA New Horizon's spaccecraft Jan 1, 2019.