Origin of the Moon
One of the great problems of our solar system is still unsolved. We have a likely story (a giant impact on Earth by a body perhaps the size of Mars) but getting this to satisfy the data, especially the chemical data, has proved difficult. I will describes the problem, explain why the alternative stories are even worse, and the path forward.
Dave Stevenson is a New Zealander who came to the US to pursue a doctorate in theoretical physics at Cornell. His early work was on Jupiter and he is heavily involved in the Juno mission, which arrives at Jupiter in mid-2016. He has spent almost his entire career at Caltech, including periods as a Chair of the Division of Geological and Planetary Science and Chair of the Caltech faculty board. He is a fellow of the Royal Society and a member of the National Academy of Sciences and has an asteroid (with a measured light curve) named after him (5211 Stevenson, discovered in 1989 by the Shoemakers).
"What's Up?" in this month will be presented by Chris Butler