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Megan E. Elwood Madden

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Megan E. Elwood Madden

Michael H Engel

Associate Professor
Stubbeman-Drace Presidential Professor of Geology and Geophysics

Ph.D., 2005 Virginia Tech
B.S., 2000 University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Office: SEC 922

Areas of Interest

Earth and Planetary Geochemistry


Dr. Elwood Madden and her students use laboratory experiments, field studies, and geochemical models to study the geochemistry of minerals, rocks, and fluids that form via hydrosphere-lithosphere-atmosphere interactions. These studies broaden our understanding of water and other fluids in near-surface environments on Earth, Mars, and other planetary bodies including Ceres, Europa, and other icy moons.  Current research projects investigate the geochemistry of near-surface water and weathering products on Earth and Mars, develop new analytical techniques to measure brine chemistry using Raman spectroscopy, and measure gas hydrate (clathrate) formation and decomposition processes in permafrost and planetary environments.

Courses Taught

Physical Geology for Scientists and Engineers

Principles of Geochemistry


Planetary Geology

Selected Publications

Phillips-Lander CM, Parnell SR, McGraw LE, Elwood Madden ME (2018) Carbonate dissolution rates in high salinity brines: Implications for post-Noachian chemical weathering on Mars Icarus.

Legett C, Pritchett BN, Elwood Madden AS, Phillips-Lander CM, Elwood Madden, ME (2018). Jarosite dissolution rates in perchlorate brine, Icarus. doi.10.1016/j.icarus.2017.06.031

Phillips-Lander CM, Legett C, Elwood Madden AS, Elwood Madden ME. (2017) Can we use pyroxene weathering textures to interpret aqueous alteration conditions? Yes and No. American Mineralogist 102, 1915-1921. 10.2138/am-2017-6155

Marra K, Elwood Madden M, Soreghan G, Hall B (2017) Chemical Weathering Trends in Fine-Grained Ephemeral Stream Sediments of the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica Geopmorphology 281, 13-30.

Steiner MH, Hausrath EM, Elwood Madden ME, Ehlmann BL, Olsen AA, Gainey SR (2016) Dissolution of Nontronite in Low Water Activity Brines and Implications for the Aqueous History of Mars, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 195, 259-276.

YJ Joo, ME Elwood Madden, GS Soreghan (2016) Chemical and physical weathering in a hot-arid, tectonically active alluvial system of Anza-Borrego Desert, CA. Sedimentology 63, 1065–1083. doi: 10.1111/sed.12249

Miller, J. L., Madden, A. E., Phillips-Lander, C. M., Pritchett, B. N., & Madden, M. E. (2016). Alunite dissolution rates: Dissolution mechanisms and implications for Mars. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 172, 93-106.

Dixon E, Elwood Madden AS, Hausrath E, Elwood Madden ME, (2015) Assessing hydrodynamic effects on jarosite dissolution rates, reaction products, and particle lifetimes, JGR-Planets DOI: 10.1002/2014JE004779

Ambuehl D, Elwood Madden ME (2014) CO2 Hydrate formation and dissociation rates: Application to Mars.  Icarus, v. 234, 45-52.

Kendall MR, Madden AS, Elwood Madden ME, Hu Q (2013) Rates and products of arsenojarosite dissolution¸ Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 112, 192-207.

Mousis O, Chassefiere E, Chevrier V, Elwood Madden ME, Lakhlifi A, Lunine JI, Montmessin F, Picaud S, Schmidt F, and Swindle TD (2013) Volatile trapping in Martian clathrates. Space Science Reviews, 173, 213-250.

Zahrai SK, Elwood Madden ME, Madden AS, Rimstidt JD, Miller MA (2013) Na-jarosite dissolution rates: The effect of mineral composition on jarosite lifetimes. Icarus, v. 223 438-443.

Elwood Madden ME, Madden AS, Rimstidt JD, Zahrai S, Kendall MR, and Miller MA (2012) Jarosite dissolution rates and nanoscale mineralogy, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 91, 306-321.

Gainey, S.R. and Elwood Madden, M.E. (2012) Kinetics of Methane Clathrate Formation and Dissociation Under Mars Relevant Conditions.  Icarus, 218, 513-524.

Leeman, J.  Rawn, C.J., Alford, J., Phelps, T.J., Elwood Madden, ME Interpreting Temperature Strain Data from Meso-Scale Clathrate Experiments (2012) Computers and Geosciences, 38, 62-67.

Pritchett, B.N., Elwood Madden ME, Madden AS (2012) Effects of water and chloride activity on jarosite dissolution rates and maximum lifetimes in high salinity brines: Implications for Earth and Mars, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 357-358: 327-336.

Root, M.J. and Elwood Madden, M.E. (2012) Potential Effects of Obliquity Change on Gas
Hydrate Stability Zones on Mars. Icarus, 218, 534-544.

Stumpf AR, Elwood Madden ME, Soreghan GS, Hall BL (2012)  Chemical weathering within glacial melt water streams, Wright and Taylor Valley, Antarctica. Chemical Geology, 322-323, 79-90.