Jarmo Korteniemi

At Hrunagil lava fall, Fimmvörðuháls, Iceland, 2012.

Jarmo Korteniemi, planetary geomorphologist

Me and my planetary science

I am by heart a wonderer: If a strange feature in the landscape catches my eye, I need to explain it (or at least try). This path has lead me to study many things, such as volcanoes, glacial features, sedimentology, ground water, climate change, as well as impact cratering – and the interactions of the aforementioned.

On Earth we have many actively destructive or landscape-obscuring processes, such as biomass, plate teconics, and running water. For me this usually means turning to places such as Mars, where such nuisances are absent (or long-gone) and geologic features remain better intact for far longer.

I have worked intimately with most datasets from Mars probes, especially analyzing images taken at visible and near-IR wavelengths. Analyzing space probe imagery combines my two main passions: observing nature and my graphical tendencies. I love geomorphologic mapping, especially using complementary spectral datasets.

I worked on the Mars Express HRSC (High Resolution Stereo Camera) science team from the target planning phase (ca. 2000) onwards, both at DLR and Uni of Oulu. At UCSC I studied how the recent changes in the Martian climate are represented in geomorphology.

The bottom line is that space stuff is just darn neat. I always felt that way, ever since I picked up my first science fiction book. The downside is that my possibilities to travel to Mars are more limited than say John Carter’s, and I have to contend with visiting terrestrial analogue sites.

I am also inclined towards public outreach. Hence, my day job is in fact science journalism. By training I am both an astronomer-geoscientist and a science communicator.

Affiliations

  • Science journalist, freelance: ca. 2012–present
  • Tiedetuubi.fi, online science journal: 2013–present
  • Arctic Planetary Science Institute, Rovaniemi, Finland: 2014–present
  • Past:
    • University of Oulu, Department of Physics, Planetology research group, Oulu, Finland: 1996–2014 (excluding the following periods)
    • University of California in Santa Cruz, Earth & Planetary Sciences, Santa Cruz, CA, USA: 2010–2011
    • Universities Space Research Association, Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston, TX, USA:  2009
    • University of Münster (WWU), Institute of Planetology, Münster, Germany: 2008–2009
    • German Aeroscpace Center (DLR), Institute of Planetary Research, Berlin, Germany; 2002
    • VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Optoelectronics, Machine vision group, Oulu, Finland: 1999
    • Sodankylä Geophysical Observatory, Aeronomy, Sodankylä, Finland: 1998

Top five field trips, excursions, and/or field study sites

  • Icelandic volcanoes and glaciers (Vatnajökull, Mýrdalsjökull, Eyjafjallajökull, Reykjanes, Grímsvötn, Katla, Iceland, 1988, 2008, 2012)
  • Volcanism and sedimentary processes in Mojave desert, CA, USA, 2010
  • European impact craters (Karikkoselkä 2000; Ilumetsa & Tsõõrikmäe 2005; Ries & Steinheim 2008; Kaali 2008; Keurusselkä 2010; Lumparn 2015; Lappajärvi & Söderfjärden 2000, 2001, 2010, 2016)
  • Volcanism* (Santorini, Greece, 2006; Madeira, Portugal, 2016)
  • Coastal desert and the Andes mountains, Peru, 2005*

* enthusiastically explored while on holiday

Top five special courses

  • Nordic – NASA / Hawai’i: Water, Ice and the Origin of Life in the Universe, Eyjafjallajökull – Myrdalsjökull – Torfajökull, Iceland, 2012
  • NordForsk – NIR: Impact Cratering in the Planetary System – Cratering Mechanisms and Shock Metamorphism, Lappajärvi – Söderfjärden – Keurusselkä impact craters, Finland, 2010
  • SYKLI: Geologic diversity of Saaremaa, Estonia, 2008
  • ESIR: Geophysical Research Campaign at the Ilumetsa Impact Craters, Estonia, 2005
  • ESA/Novespace: 3rd student parabolic flight campaign, Bordeaux, France, 2000

Top five publications

  • Korteniemi J. & Kreslavsky M.A. (2013): Patterned ground in Martian high northern latitudes: Morphology and age constraints. Icarus, vol. 225, iss. 2, pp. 960–970. (link to article)
  • Lahtela H., Kostama V.-P., Korteniemi J., Raitala J., Neukum G. & the HRSC Co-Investigator Team (2011): Mapping and analysis of a chain of channeled basins in the eastern rim region of Hellas basin, Mars. Planetary and Space Science, vol. 59, iss. 11–12, pp. 1195–1209. (link to article)
  • Korteniemi J., Raitala J., Aittola M., Ivanov M.A., Öhman T., Kostama V.-P. & Hiesinger H. (2010): Dike indicators in the Hadriaca Patera – Promethei Terra region, Mars. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, vol. 294, iss. 3–4, pp. 466–478, EPSL-D-08-01078R1. (link to article)
  • Ivanov M., Korteniemi J., Kostama V.-P., Raitala J., Törmänen T., Neukum G. (2010): Major episodes of geologic history of the western Promethei Terra, Mars. Journal of Geophysical Research – Planets, vol. 115, iss. E3, 2008JE003256RRR (link to article)
  • Korteniemi J., Aittola M., Öhman T. & Raitala J. (2006): Floor-fractured craters on the terrestrial planets – the Martian perspective. In: Wilson A. (ed.): Proceedings of the 40th ESLAB symposium: First International conference on Impact cratering in the Solar system. ESA SP-612, ESA Publications Division, pp. 193–198. 8.–12.5.2006, ESA-ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands.

Other achievements, positions of trust, etc.

  • Reviewer for Icarus (2012), NASA (2012), NSF (2013), Journal for Geophysical Research (2013), Springer references (2013-2015), and National Geographic (2015)
  • Member of the editorial board of the Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms (Hargitai & Kereszturi (eds.), Springer, 2015)
  • Organizing committee member for international science conferences (Nordic Geological Winter Meeting, Oulu, Finland, 2006; EPSC, Münster, Germany, 2008) and conference session chair (Vernadsky-Brown Microsymposium, Moscow, Russia, 2005 and 2007; EPSC, Berlin, Germany, 2006)
  • Teaching and supervising in-depth course on mapping Mars (2006), directing mid-level courses (2007, 2008), reviewing Master’s thesis (2011), co-supervising Bachelor of Science thesis (2012)