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Donald D. Blankenship, UTIG Senior Research Scientist
Donald D. Blankenship

Donald D. Blankenship

Senior Research Scientist

Ph.D., M.S., University of Wisconsin-Madison (1989, 1982)
B.S., Eastern Illinois University (1978)

Telephone 512-471-0489
email: blank at

My current research vision centers on laying the scientific foundation for diagnosing how properties and processes at the basal interface of ice sheets characterized by beds lying well below sea level (i.e., marine ice sheets) control their evolution. My motivation is the belief that it is knowledge of these properties and processes that will be critical for building ice sheet models that can be used to predict the response of marine ice sheets to a warming global climate. An additional component of this vision includes applying what we learn about the environment at the base of Earth’s ice sheets to the search for habitats both within and beneath the icy shells on other bodies across the solar system and, in particular, Jupiter’s moon Europa. I see these as the two grand challenges in geophysics of the cryosphere which not only interest me fundamentally but, given my experience, allow me to contribute uniquely. Recognizing that these two problems transcend the scope of any individual’s talents, I also see them as the perfect vehicle for pursuing my commitment to sharing discovery with curious, creative and compassionate young people.

Project Web Pages:

Europa Jupiter System Mission (EJSM)


Investigating the Cryospheric Evolution of the Central Antarctic Plate (ICECAP)

DDB and DC3 ICECAP 2008