Jump to content

Jonathan Lunine

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jonathan Lunine
Jonathan Irving Lunine

June 26, 1959 (1959-06-26) (age 64)
Occupation(s)Planetary Scientist, Physicist
AwardsHarold C. Urey Prize (1988)

Jonathan I. Lunine (born June 26, 1959) is an American planetary scientist and physicist. Lunine teaches at Cornell University, where he is the David C. Duncan Professor in the Physical Sciences and chair of the Department of Astronomy. Having published more than 380 research papers, Lunine is at the forefront of research into planet formation, evolution, and habitability. His work includes analysis of brown dwarfs, gas giants, and planetary satellites. Within the Solar System, bodies with potential organic chemistry and prebiotic conditions, particularly Saturn's moon Titan, have been the focus of Lunine's research.[1]

Lunine is the David Baltimore Distinguished Visiting Scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He will assume the position of chief scientist of Jet Propulsion Laboratory on August 16, 2024.[2] Lunine is an interdisciplinary scientist on the Cassini mission to Saturn, and on the James Webb Space Telescope, as well as co-investigator on the Juno mission launched in 2011 to Jupiter. He is the principal investigator of a proposed astrobiology mission to Enceladus called Enceladus Life Finder.[3]

Lunine is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences,[4] a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Geophysical Union, and a member of the International Academy of Astronautics, which gave him its Basic Science Award in 2009. In 2015 he was awarded the Jean Dominique Cassini medal of the European Geosciences Union. He earned a B.S. in physics and astronomy from the University of Rochester in 1980, followed by M.S. (1983) and Ph.D. (1985) degrees in lllPlanetary lllScience from the California Institute of Technology.[5]

Lunine was raised Jewish, but is a convert to Catholicism who helped found the Society of Catholic Scientists.[6] He also delivered a lecture on Georges Lemaître.[7]

Selected publications[edit]

Technical books[edit]

  • Earth: Evolution of a Habitable World, 2nd Edition (Cambridge University Press, 2013)
  • Astrobiology: A Multidisciplinary Approach (Pearson Addison-Wesley, 2005)

Scholarly articles[edit]

  • H B Niemann; S K Atreya; S J Bauer; et al. (8 December 2005). "The abundances of constituents of Titan's atmosphere from the GCMS instrument on the Huygens probe". Nature. 438 (7069): 779–84. Bibcode:2005Natur.438..779N. doi:10.1038/NATURE04122. ISSN 1476-4687. PMID 16319830. Wikidata Q28284580.
  • J Hunter Waite; Michael R Combi; Wing-Huen Ip; et al. (10 March 2006). "Cassini ion and neutral mass spectrometer: Enceladus plume composition and structure". Science. 311 (5766): 1419–22. doi:10.1126/SCIENCE.1121290. ISSN 0036-8075. PMID 16527970. Wikidata Q28301206.
  • Stofan ER; Elachi C; Lunine JI; et al. (1 January 2007). "The lakes of Titan". Nature. 445 (7123): 61–64. doi:10.1038/NATURE05438. ISSN 1476-4687. PMID 17203056. Wikidata Q34001749.


  1. ^ "Jonathan I. Lunine". 50 Years in Space. California Institute of Technology. July 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-01.
  2. ^ "Jonathan Lunine Appointed Chief Scientist of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory". NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). June 6, 2024. Retrieved June 7, 2024.
  3. ^ Inner Workings: Icy ocean worlds offer chances to find life. Adam Mann, PNAS, 2 May 2017, vol. 114 no. 18 4566–4568, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1703361114
  4. ^ News of being elected as a member of National Academy of Sciences
  5. ^ "Dr. Jonathan I. Lunine". Department of Planetary Sciences Lunar and Planetary Observatory, Faculty. University of Arizona. May 2002. Archived from the original on 2007-08-23. Retrieved 2007-09-01.
  6. ^ America magazine
  7. ^ Cornell Sun

See also[edit]