LANDSAT satellite image of Texas with green colors indicating vegetation.
The weather here in the Houston area is typical of the gulf coast, with very warm and humid summers lasting from about April until November, and very mild winters. Rainfall averages around 57 inches (145 cm) per year, spread out pretty much year-round, although summers are probably the rainiest. We are also in the heart of hurricane country, so we keep a very close eye on the tropical weather every year (June through November). You can have a look at virtually up-to-the-minute weather conditions and forecasts, plus satellite images, Doppler radar images, and more courtesy of the good folks at The Weather Underground (whose weather-gadget appears above, and which you can click for an instant snapshot of current conditions). This is my favorite source of weather info on the net.
Hi there, glad you could make it. In these pages, you can get a look at some of the things that I find interesting, enjoyable, necessary, or some combinations of these. Follow the links on the menu bar at the top of these pages to get to those areas you'd like to check out; descriptions of each section appear below. These pages will look best if you "maximize" your browser.
I am the manager of the Astromaterials Research Office in the Astromaterials Research and Exploration Sciences (ARES) program office, formerly the Earth Science and Solar System Exploration Division at the NASA Johnson Space Center, located in the Clear Lake area, about 20 miles south of Houston, Texas. I'm also a research scientist in Geology, specifically Igneous Petrology. (For you non-geologists, petrology is the part of geology concerned with just how particular rocks are formed.) My main area of expertise is in experimental petrologic studies of planetary materials. After I got my degree in 1991, I lived overseas, in England and Australia, for over five years before returning to the US in 1996. I've been playing guitar since I was eleven or twelve years old, and had aspired to play for a living until getting bitten by the geology bug in Junior College; so music means a lot to me. I am also an enthusiastic baseball fan and home beer brewer.
Being an Earth and Planetary Scientist, I am keenly interested in things about our planet besides geology, like storms and weather patterns, and about our planet's place in the solar system and in the universe. I have always been fascinated by anything to do with outer space in general, and the (manned and unmanned) exploration of space in particular. So being at NASA is very exciting for me; you will probably not be surprised to learn that I am also a big science fiction fan.
Other sections to these pages can be accessed by using the links below, and the menu bar at the top provides a quick way to jump from one page to another.
Here's some more detailed information about yours truly, including personal history, curriculum vitae, etc.
Go this way to learn more about my interests and research in Geology and Planetary Science. You'll be able to inspect the abstracts to my journal papers (and request reprints if you want), complete AGU and LPSC abstracts, and descriptions of work in progress. Also, you'll find some links to other institutions where Petrology and its related arts are practiced, as well as to some Web locations that have a petrological flavor of some kind.
Blast off to a collection of cool and informative sites dealing with Space. Links to spaceflight and launch information, space science news, and various mission planning sites, plus to some good image libraries.
You might want to take note of my Music page, where you'll find a list of some of my favorite musical artists, and info about my own instruments, made by Pimentel and Sons in Albuquerque. Plus, you can download mp3 files of recordings of my playing if you like.
Belly up in this direction to visit the Beer page. You'll find some useful documents on techniques and procedures, the major brewing FAQ files, links to some of the best brewing Web pages around, descriptions and photos of my brewing setup, and more.