Understanding Pluto’s interior at the atomic scale

Ever since it was demoted its planet status Pluto raised in interest within the planetology community. Then the New Horizon mission arrived and stunned everybody with the closest-ever pictures and measurements of various geological features at the surface and with the atmospheric data.

The surface of Pluto revealed itself geologically active despite the low temperatures. In particular convecting terrains imply flowing nitrogen and water ices.

Here we wish to explore the behaviour at low temperatures of pure solid nitrogen and nitrogen-based ices. We do this at the atomic scale employing molecular dynamics techniques.

Learning outcomes:
Use of supercomputing centres; use of python/Linux/Unix use; atomistic approach to large-scale mineral processes; thermodynamics; molecular solids.

Published Sep. 26, 2019 3:44 PM - Last modified Sep. 26, 2019 3:44 PM

Scope (credits)