Nicholas Warner, PhD

Assistant Professor of Geology

State University of New York at Geneseo

Featured Research

Near Surface Stratigraphy and Regolith Production in Southwestern Elysium Planitia, Mars: Implications for Hesperian-Amazonian Terrains and the InSight Lander Mission (October 2017)

Abstract Excerpt: The presence of rocks in the ejecta of craters at the InSight landing site in southwestern Elysium Planitia indicates a strong, rock-producing unit at depth. A finer regolith above is inferred by the lack of rocks in the ejecta of 10-m-scale craters. This regolith should be penetrable by the mole of the Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package (HP3). 

Citation: Warner, N.H., Golombek, M.P., Sweeney, J. et al. Space Sci Rev (2017) 211: 147.


Peer-Reviewed Publications

  1. PM Grindrod, NH Warner, DEJ Hobley, C Schwartz, S Gupta (2017). Stepped fans and facies-equivalent phyllosilicates in Coprates Catena, Mars. Icarus. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2017.10.030.
  2. NH Warner, MP Golombek, J Sweeney, R Fergason, R Kirk, C Schwartz (2017). Near Surface Stratigraphy and Regolith Production in Southwestern Elysium Planitia, Mars: Implications for Hesperian-Amazonian Terrains and the InSight Lander Mission. Space Science Reviews. doi:10.1007/s11214-017-0352-x.
  3. M. Golombek, D. Kipp, N. Warner, I.J. Daubar, R. Fergason, R.L. Kirk, et al (2017). Selection of the InSight Landing Site. Space Science Reviews. doi:10.1007/s11214-016-0321-9.
  4. LE Morgan, M Munk, B Davidheiser‐Kroll, NH Warner, S Gupta, R Slaybaugh, P Harkness, DF Mark (2017). Instrumentation Development for In Situ 40Ar/39Ar Planetary Geochronology. Geostandards and Geoanalytical Research. doi:10.1111/ggr.12170.
  5. C Schröder, PA Bland, MP Golombek, JW Ashley, NH Warner, JA Grant (2016). Amazonian chemical weathering rate derived from stony meteorite finds at Meridiani Planum on Mars. Nature Communications. doi:10.1038/ncomms13459.
  6. Duller, Robert A., Warner, Nicholas H., De Angelis, Silvio, Armitage, John J., Poyatos-Moré, Miquel (2015). Reconstructing the timescale of a catastrophic fan-forming event on Earth using a Mars model. Geophysical Research Letters. doi:10.1002/2015GL066031.
  7. R. Jaumann, D. Tirsch, E. Hauber, V. Ansan, G. Di Achille, G. Erkeling, F. Fueten, J. Head, M.G. Kleinhans, N. Mangold, G.G. Michael, G. Neukum, A. Pacifici, T. Platz, M. Pondrelli, J. Raack, D. Reiss, D.A. Williams, S. Adeli, D. Baratoux, G. de Villiers, B. Foing, S. Gupta, K. Gwinner, H. Hiesinger, H. Hoffmann, L. Le Deit, L. Marinangeli, K-D Matz, V. Mertens, J.P. Muller, J.H. Pasckert, T. Roatsch, A.P. Rossi, F. Scholten, M. Sowe, J. Voigt, N. Warner. (2015). Quantifying geological processes on Mars—Results of the high resolution stereo camera (HRSC) on Mars express. Planetary and Space Science. doi:10.1016/j.pss.2014.11.029.
  8. Warner, N.H., Gupta, S., Calef, F., Grindrod, P., Boll, N., Goddard, K. (2015). Minimum effective area for high resolution crater counting of martian terrains. Icarus. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2014.09.024
  9. P.M. Grindrod and Warner, N.H. (2014). Erosion rate and previous extent of interior layered deposits on Mars revealed by obstructed landslides. Geology. doi: 10.1130/G35790.1
  10. Duller, R. A., N. H. Warner, C. McGonigle, S. De Angelis, A. J. Russell, and N. P. Mountney (2014), Landscape reaction, response, and recovery following the catastrophic 1918 Katla jökulhlaup, southern Iceland, Geophysical Research Letters. doi:10.1002/2014GL060090.
  11. Goddard, K, Warner, N.H., Gupta, S, Kim, J.R. (2014). Mechanisms and timescales of fluvial activity at Mojave and other young Martian craters. Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets. doi: 10.1002/2013JE004564.
  12. M. P. Golombek, N. H. Warner, V. Ganti, M. P. Lamb, T. J. Parker, R. L. Fergason, R. Sullivan. (2014). Small crater modification on Meridiani Planum and implications for erosion rates and climate change on Mars. Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets. doi: 10.1002/2014JE004658.
  13. Warner, N.H., Sowe, M., Gupta, S., Dumke, A., Goddard, K. (2013). Fill and spill of giant lakes in the eastern Valles Marineris region of Mars. Geology. doi: 10.1130/G34172.1
  14. Kim, J-R., Lin, S-Y., Muller, J-P., Warner, N.H., Gupta, S. (2013). Multi-resolution digital terrain models and their potential for Mars landing site assessments. Planetary and Space Science. doi: 10.1016/j.pss.2013.06.001.
  15. Rice, M., Bell, J.F., Gupta, S., Warner, N.H., Goddard, K., Anderson, R. (2013). A detailed geologic characterization of Eberswalde crater, Mars. The International Journal of Mars Exploration. doi:10.1555/mars.2005.1.0.
  16. McIntyre, N., Warner, N. H., Gupta, S. Kim, J.-R. and Muller, J.-P. (2012). Hydraulic modeling of a distributary channel of Athabasca Valles, Mars, using a high-resolution digital terrain model. Journal of Geophysical Research, Planets. doi:10.1029/2011JE003939.
  17. Grindrod, P.M., West, M. Warner, N.H., Gupta, S. (2011). Formation of an Hesperian-aged sedimentary basin containing phyllosilicates in Coprates Catena, Mars. Icarus. 218, 178-195.
  18. Armitage, J.J., Warner, N.H., Goddard, K., Gupta, S. (2011). Timescales of alluvial fan development by precipitation on Mars. Geophysical Research Letters. 38, L17203, doi:10.1029/2011GL048907.
  19. Rice, M., Gupta, S., Bell, J., and Warner, N.H. (2011). Influence of fault-controlled topography on fluvio-deltaic sedimentary systems in Eberswalde Crater, Mars. Geophysical Research Letters. 38, L16203, doi:10.1029/2011GL048149.
  20. Warner, N.H., Gupta, S., Kim, J., Muller, J. Le Corre, L., Morley, J., Lin, S., McGonigle, C. (2011). Constraints on the origin and evolution of Iani Chaos, Mars. Journal of Geophysical Research, Planets. 116, E06003, doi:10.1029/2010JE003787.
  21. Bargery, A.S., Balme, M.R., Warner, N., Gallagher, C.J., and Gupta, S. 2011. A background to Mars exploration and research. In: Balme, M.R., Bargery, A.S., Gallagher, C.J., and Gupta, S. (eds) Martian Geomorphology. Geological Society London Special Publications, 356. 5 - 21.
  22. Warner, N.H., Gupta, S., Kim, J., Lin, S., and Muller, J. (2010). Retreat of a giant cataract in a long-lived (3.7 Ga – 2.6 Ga) martian outflow channel. Geology. 38(9), 791-794.
  23. Warner, N., Gupta, S., Kim, J., Lin, S., and Muller, J. (2010). Hesperian equatorial thermokarst lakes in Ares Vallis as evidence for transient warm conditions on Mars. Geology. 38, 71-74.
  24. Warner, N., Gupta, S., Lin. S., Kim, J., Muller, J.P., and Morley, J. (2010). Late Noachian to Hesperian climate change on Mars: Evidence of episodic warming from transient crater lakes near Ares Vallis. Journal of Geophysical Research, Planets. Doi: 10.1029/2009JE003522.
  25. Warner, N.H., Farmer, J. (2010). Sub-glacial hydrothermal alteration minerals in Jökulhlaup deposits in southern Iceland, with implications for detecting past or present habitable environments on Mars. Astrobiology. 10(5), 523-547.
  26. Warner, N., Gupta, S., Muller, J, Kim, J. and Lin, S. (2009). A refined chronology of catastrophic outflow events in Ares Vallis, Mars. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. 288, 58-69.
  27. Warner, N.H. and Farmer, J.D. (2008). The origin of conical mounds at the mouth of Chasma Boreale. Journal of Geophysical Research, Planets. 113, doi:10.1029/2007JE003028.
  28. Warner, N.H. and Farmer, J.D. (2008). Importance of aeolian processes in the origin of the north polar chasmata, Mars. Icarus. 196, 368-384.
  29. Warner, N.H. and Gregg, T.K.P. (2003). Evolved lavas on Mars? Observations from southwest Arsia Mons and Sabancaya volcano, Peru. Journal of Geophysical Research, Planets. 108, doi:10.1029/2002JE001969.



  • Aug 2014-current: Assistant Professor, State University of New York at Geneseo, Geneseo, New York
  • Feb 2014-May 2014: Postdoctoral Research Scholar, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California
  • Feb 2012-Feb 2014: NASA Postdoctoral Fellow, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California
  • Oct 2008-Nov 2011: Postdoctoral Research Scholar, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom
  • Aug 2002-June 2004: New York State Certified Earth and Environmental Science Teacher, Spencerport High School, Spencerport, NY

Technical Experience

  • Geographical Information Systems (ARCGIS)
  • Planetary Image Processing Software (ISIS, SOCET SET, ENVI, ERDAS Imagine)
  • 3D Visualization Systems and Software (IVS Fledermaus, 3D Stereoscopic Monitors)
  • X-Ray Diffraction (JADE)
  • Image Processing (GDAL)
  • ASD Lab and Field Visible-Light Near-Infrared Spectrometers
  • X-ray Diffractometer
  • Scanning Electron Microscope
  • Differential GPS
  • 3Di Monitor for 3D Visualization

Field Experience

  • Chile: Geology of Chile Field Course
  • Iceland: Pro-Glacial Outflood Systems (Geomorphology and Alteration Minerology)
  • New Zealand: Volcanology and Geothermal Field Course
  • Andes Mountains, Peru: Mega-Blocky Lava Flow Morphology
  • Appalachian Basin: Three month field and lab research collecting samples in eight states throughout the basin
  • Greene River Formation, Wyoming: Two week field research to map Eocene-age lacustrine and river sediments

Mission Involvement

  • Aug 2015-current: NASA InSight (Mars Mission), Instrument Site Selection Working Group (ISSWG)
  • Feb 2012-current: NASA InSight (Mars Mission), Landing site hazards, characterization, and ellipse down-selection (supervisor: Matt Golombek, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory)
  • Feb 2012-current: NASA Mars Exploration Rover B (Opportunity), Geology Theme Group Lead

Professional Service & Workshops

  • 2015: Workshop for Early Career Geoscience Faculty, College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Virginia
  • 2015: Workshop on Issues in Crater Studies and the Dating of Planetary Surfaces, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland
  • 2015: Letchworth Park Nature Center Advisory Group, SUNY Geneseo
  • 2015: Guest lecturer, INTD 105, SUNY Geneseo
  • 2014: Physics Colloquium Speaker, “Choosing a Landing Site on Mars,” SUNY Geneseo
  • 2014: All College Hour Faculty Panel, “What is Knowledge?”, SUNY Geneseo
  • 2013: Workshop on Photogrammetric Processing of Planetary Stereo Imagery using ISIS and SOCET SET, USGS Astrogeology Science Center, Flagstaff, AZ
  • 2010-current: NASA Proposal External Reviewer, Mars Data Analysis Program
  • 2008-current: Journal Referee, Astrobiology, Icarus, Geol. Soc. London., Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, GSA Special Issue
  • 2011: UK Space Agency Aurora Space Resource Development Day, London, United Kingdom
  • 2011: 5th Mars Science Laboratory (Curiosity) Mission Landing Site Workshop, Monrovia, CA
  • 2010: 4th Mars Science Laboratory (Curiosity) Mission Landing Site Workshop, Monrovia, CA
  • 2010: Mars Sedimentology Workshop, El Paso, TX
  • 2009: Mars Habitability/Landing Site Workshop, Open University, UK
  • 2007-2008: Preparing Future Faculty, Arizona State University
  • 2006: Volcanology and Geothermal Field Course, Auckland, NZ

Postsecondary Teaching

  • 2014-current: Assistant Professor of Geology, State University of New York at Geneseo
  • 2012 Guest Lecturer, California Institute of Technology (Planetary Geology/Geologic Mapping)
  • 2010-2011 Tutorial Instructor, Imperial College London (Second Year Students)
  • 2010 Guest Lecturer in Geomorphology, Imperial College London
  • 2009 Field Instructor in Fourth Year Geology Course, Imperial College London (Apennine Mountains, Italy)
  • 2004-2007 Teaching Assistant in Historical and Introductory Geology Lab, Arizona State University
  • 2002-2004 New York State Certified Earth and Environmental Science Teacher, Spencerport High School, NY (Grades 7-12)
  • 2000-2002 Teaching Assistant in Introductory Geology Lab, State University of New York at Buffalo
  • 1997-2000 Teaching Assistant in Introductory Geology Lab, State University of New York at Geneseo

Professional Affiliations

  • 2014-current: United University Professionals (UUP)
  • 2006-current: American Geophysical Union (AGU)
  • 2006-current: Geological Society of America (GSA)
  • 2002-2004: New York State United Teachers (NYSUT)

Grants, Awards and Honors


  • 2015: NSF Scholarships in (S-STEM), Co-I, $693,000
  • 2013: Mars Data Analysis Program (NASA-MDAP), Science Principal Investigator, 3 years, $360,000
  • 2012: NASA Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2 years, $120,000
  • 2007: Lewis and Clark Fund for Exploration and Research in Astrobiology Grant: American Philosphical Society/NASA
  • 2005: NASA Space Grant Graduate Fellowship: Arizona State University

Awards and Honors

  • 2002: Stephen E. Dwornik Award, Geological Society of America Planetary Division
  • 2000: SUNY Geneseo Graduation with Honors, Geological Sciences
  • 1997: SUNY Geneseo Geological Science Alumni Scholarship


Ph.D. in Geological Sciences

Arizona State University, School of Earth and Space Exploration
Advisor: Dr. Jack Farmer
Dissertation Title: “Chasma Boreale, Mars: A possible analog for catastrophic outwash systems in Iceland?”

M.S. in Geological Sciences

State University of New York at Buffalo, Department of Geology
Advisor: Dr. Tracy Gregg
Thesis Title: “Rheologic and emplacement parameters for a lava flow field southwest of Arsia Mons, Mars: Comparisons to Sabancaya volcano, Peru”

B.A. in Geological Sciences and Secondary (7-12) Education

State University of New York at Geneseo, Department of Geological Sciences
Advisor: Dr. Jeffrey Over
Honors Thesis Title: “Placing constraints on the Frasnian-Famennian extinction boundary near Norton, VA through conodont biostratigraphy”

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