Enjoying the scenery at Volcanoes National Park on the big island of Hawai’i

Dr. Christine E. Jilly-Rehak (Christie) is a planetary scientist working on unraveling the mysteries of our Solar System through micro-analysis of extraterrestrial samples.

Her research is studying the composition of materials that formed within the first few million years of the Solar System’s lifetime. This includes chondrites (primitive meteorites), cometary material, and cosmic dust. These materials represent some of the earliest building blocks of our Solar System — by studying their compositions, we can begin to understand the conditions and environments from which they formed over 4.5 billion years ago.

Dr. Jilly-Rehak is a Research Scientist and Lab Manager at the SHRIMP-RG facility at Stanford University’s Department of Geological Sciences, and also serves as a Lab Manager of the NanoSIMS instrument at the Stanford Nano Shared Facilities. Both of these instruments are secondary ion mass spectrometers (SIMS), capable of measuring the isotopic and chemical composition of materials at high spatial resolution.

Prior to her arrival at Stanford, Christie was a post-doctoral researcher at the UC Berkeley Space Sciences Laboratory in California. She received her Ph.D. in Geology and Geophysics from the University of Hawaii in 2015, and her Bachelor’s degree in Astronomy from the University of Southern California in 2008.

In addition to scientific pursuits, Christie is also an experienced graphic designer. She received a minor in Communication Design from USC in 2008, and supplemented formal design training with night classes in graphic, web, and package design at Pasadena Art Center.