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Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Department of Mineral Sciences

Izalco Volcano
  • Emma Bullock
  • Geochemist - Division of Meteorites
  • Phone:   (202) 633-1815
  • Fax:   (202) 357-2476
  • E-mail Address:   bullocke siatedu
  • Mailing Address:
    Smithsonian Institution
    PO Box 37012, MRC 119
    Washington, DC 20013-7012
  • Shipping Address:
    Smithsonian Institution
    National Museum of Natural History
    10th & Constitution NW
    Washington, DC 20560-0119

Education and Information


Research Interests

My research interests focus on understanding the beginning of our Solar System, from the appearance of the first solids, through to impact and heating on asteroids, and their alteration by fluids. In order to do this, I study a group of meteorites known as carbonaceous chondrites – meteorites that formed early in our Solar System, and have resided on asteroids that never became hot enough to undergo differentiation. I use a variety of highly specialized equipment in order to complete my research. The optical microscope, the scanning electron microscope (SEM) and the electron microprobe (EPMA) are housed at the Department of Mineral Sciences, and allow me to determine the chemistry and texture of my meteorite samples. In order to understand the isotopic systems of these materials, I turn to instruments such as the secondary ion mass spectrometer (SIMS), and collaborate with colleagues at the University of Wisconsin, Madison and the University of Hawai’i, Manoa.


I am involved in many public outreach events at the Smithsonian Institution, from tours of the meteorite collection, to public events such as "Mars Day" at the National Air and Space Museum, through to seminars and webcasts. I have also been a guest specialist on several news shows related to meteorite falls on outlets such as the BBC, ABC, and NBC.

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