Marion Nachon

Marion Nachon

Associate Research Scientist


  • Project 2: “Coupling Mars ground and orbital views: generate viewsheds of Mastcam images from the Curiosity rover, using ArcGIS® and public datasets.”
    • Manuscript “Coupling Mars ground and orbital views: generate viewsheds of Mastcam images from the Curiosity rover, using ArcGIS® and public datasets”. M. Nachon et al, Accepted in Earth and Space Science. 
  • Project 3: Participation to project “SAND-E: Semi-Autonomous Navigation in Detrital Environments: integrating robotic terrain analysis, geochemistry, and sedimentology to assess sediment transport pathways”.

    Funded by NASA PSTAR, led by Pr. R. Ewing.

  • Project 4: “Dust from Mars-analog plains in Iceland: physico-chemical properties as a function of grain size, and comparison with regional/local fluvial and aeolian sediments”.

Selected Publications

Datasets analyzed:  ■ Mastcam.   □ MAHLI.   ● HiRISE + GIS software.   ☼ ChemCam (LIBS). 


■● Coupling Mars ground and orbital views: generate viewsheds of Mastcam images from the Curiosity rover, using ArcGIS® and public datasets. M. Nachon, S. Borges, R. Ewing, F. Rivera-Hernández, N. Stein, J. Van Beek. (2020)

Accepted in Earth and Space Science, doi:10.1029/2020EA001247

Preprint available:

☼■□ Grain size variations in the Murray Formation: stratigraphic evidence for changing depositional environments in Gale Crater, Mars. F. Rivera‐Hernández, D.Y. Sumner , N. Mangold, S.G. Banham , K.S. Edgett, C.M. Fedo, S. Gupta, S. Gwizd, E. Heydari, S. Maurice, M. Nachon, H. Newsom, J. Schieber, K. Stack‐Morgan, N. Stein, R.C. Wiens. (2020)

J. Geophys. Res., 


■☼ An interval of high salinity in ancient Gale crater lake on Mars. Rapin W., B. Ehlmann, G. Dromart, J. Schieber, N. Thomas, W. Fischer, V. Fox, N. Stein, M. Nachon, B.C. Clark, L.C. Kah, L. Thompson, H.A. Meyer, T.S.J. Gabriel, C. Hardgrove, N. Mangold, F. Rivera-Hernandez, R.C. Wiens and A.R. Vasavada. (2019).

Nature Geoscience,

☼■□ Using ChemCam LIBS data to constrain grain size in rocks on Mars: Proof of concept and application to rocks at Yellowknife Bay and Pahrump Hills, Gale crater. Rivera-Hernández F, D. Sumner, N. Mangold, K. Stack, O. Forni, H. Newsom, A. Williams, M. Nachon, J. L'Haridon, O. Gasnault, R. Wiens, S. Maurice. (2019)



●■ Late-stage diagenetic concretions in the Murray formation, Gale crater, Mars. Sun V., K. Stack, L. Kah, L. Thompson, W. Fischerd, A. Williams, S. Johnson, R. Wiens, R. Kronyak, M. Nachon, C. House, S. VanBommel. (2018)


☼●■ Chemical variability in mineralized veins observed by ChemCam on the lower slopes of Mount Sharp in Gale crater, Mars. L’Haridon J., N. Mangold, P.-Y. Meslin, J. Johnson, W. Rapin, O. Forni, A. Cousin, V. Payré, E. Dehouck, M. Nachon, L. Le Deit, O. Gasnault, S. Maurice, R.C. Wiens. (2018)


Copper enrichments in the Kimberley formation in Gale crater, Mars: evidence for a Cu deposit at the source. Payré V., C. Fabre, V. Sautter, A. Cousin, N. Mangold, L. Le Deit, O. Forni, W. Goetz, R.C. Wiens, O. Gasnault, P-Y. Meslin, J. Lasue, W. Rapin, B. Clark, M. Nachon, N.L. Lanza, S. Maurice. (2018)


● Are the different gully morphologies due to different formation processes on the Kaiser dune field? Pasquon K., J. Gargani, M. Nachon, S. Conway, M. Massé, G. Jouannic, M. Balme, F. Costard, M. Vincendon. (2018)

Geo. S. London Publi.,


●☼■□ Chemistry of diagenetic features analyzed by ChemCam at Pahrump Hills, Gale crater, Mars. M. Nachon, N. Mangold, O. Forni, L.C. Kah, A. Cousin, R.C. Wiens, R. Anderson, D. Blaney, J.G. Blank, F. Calef, S.M. Clegg, C. Fabre, M.R. Fisk, O. Gasnault, J.P. Grotzinger, R. Kronyak, N.L. Lanza, J. Lasue, L. Le Deit, S. Le Mouélic, S. Maurice, P.-Y. Meslin, D.Z. Oehler, V. Payré, W. Rapin, S. Schröder, K. Stack, D. Sumner. (2017)


☼■ Centimeter to decimeter hollow concretions and voids in Gale Crater sediments, Mars. Wiens R.C., D.M. Rubin, W. Goetz, A.G. Fairén, S.P. Schwenzer, J.R. Johnson, R. Milliken, B. Clark, N. Mangold, K.M. Stack, D. Oehler, S. Rowland, M. Chan, D. Vaniman, S. Maurice, O. Gasnault, W. Rapin, S. Schroeder, S. Clegg, O. Forni, D. Blaney, A. Cousin, V. Payré, C. Fabre, M. Nachon, S. Le Mouelic, V. Sautter, S. Johnstone, F. Calef, A.R. Vasavada, J.P. Grotzinger. (2017)


Alkali trace elements in Gale crater, Mars, with ChemCam: calibration update and geological implications. Payré V. C. Fabre, A. Cousin, V. Sautter, R.C. Wiens, O. Forni, O. Gasnault, N. Mangold, P.-Y. Meslin, J. Lasue, A. Ollila, W. Rapin, S. Maurice, M. Nachon, L. Le Deit, N. Lanza, S. Clegg. (2017)

J. Geophys. Res., doi:10.1002/2016JE005201


Hydration state of calcium sulfates in Gale crater: Identification of bassanite veins. Rapin W., P.-Y. Meslin, S. Maurice, D. Vaniman, M. Nachon, N. Mangold, S. Schröder, O. Gasnault, O. Forni, R.C. Wiens, G.M. Martínez, A. Cousin, V. Sautter, J. Lasue, E.B. Rampe, D. Archer. (2016)

Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., doi/10.1016/j.epsl.2016.07.045

ChemCam activities and discoveries during the nominal mission of the MSL in Gale crater, Mars. S. Maurice, S.M. Clegg, R.C. Wiens, O. Gasnault, W. Rapin, O. Forni, A. Cousin, V. Sautter, Mangold, L. Le Deit, M. Nachon, R.B. Anderson, N.L. Lanza, C. Fabre, V. Payré, J. Lasue, P.-Y. Meslin, R.J. Léveillé, B.L. Barraclough, P. Beck, S.C. Bender, G. Berger, J.C. Bridges, N.T. Bridges, G. Dromart, M.D. Dyar, R. Francis, J. Frydenvang, B. Gondet, B.L. Ehlmann, K.E. Herkenhoff, J.R. Johnson, Y. Langevin, M.B. Madsen, N. Melikechi, J.-L. Lacour, S. Le Mouélic, E. Lewin, H.E. Newsom, A.M. Ollila, P. Pinet, S. Schroder, J.-B. Sirven, R.L. Tokar, M.J. Toplis, C. d'Uston, D.T. Vaniman, A.R. Vasavada. (2016)

Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, doi:10.1039/c5ja00417a

☼■ The potassic sedimentary rocks in Gale crater, Mars, as seen by ChemCam on board Curiosity. Le Deit L., N. Mangold, O. Forni, A. Cousin, J. Lasue, S. Schröder, R.C. Wiens, D. Sumner, C. Fabre, K.M. Stack, R.B. Anderson, D. Blaney, S.Clegg, G. Dromart, M.Fisk, O. Gasnault, J.P. Grotzinger, S. Gupta, N. Lanza, S. Le Mouélic, S. Maurice, S.M. McLennan, P.-Y. Meslin, M. Nachon, H. Newsom, V. Payré, W. Rapin, M. Rice, V. Sautter, A.H. Treiman. (2016)

J. Geophys. Res., 

Observation of > 5 wt % zinc at the Kimberley outcrop, Gale crater, Mars. Lasue J., S.M. Clegg, O. Forni, A. Cousin, R.C. Wiens, N. Lanza, N. Mangold, L. Le Deit, O. Gasnault, S. Maurice, J.A. Berger, K. Stack, D. Blaney, C. Fabre, W. Goetz, J. Johnson, S. Le Mouélic, M. Nachon, V. Payré, W. Rapin, D. Y. Sumner. (2016)

J. Geophys. Res., 


●☼■□ Chemical variations in Yellowknife Bay Formation sediments analyzed by the Curiosity rover on Mars. Mangold N., O. Forni, G. Dromart, K. Stack, R. Wiens, O. Gasnault, D. Sumner, M. Nachon, P.-Y. Meslin, R.B. Anderson, B. Barraclough, J.F. Bell III, G. Berger, D.L. Blaney, J.C. Bridges, F. Calef, B. Clark, S.M. Clegg, A. Cousin, L. Edgar, K. Edgett, B. Ehlmann, C. Fabre, M. Fisk, J. Grotzinger, S. Gupta, K.E. Herkenhoff, J. Hurowitz, J.R. Johnson, L.C. Kah, N. Lanza, J. Lasue, S. Le Mouélic, R. Léveillé, E. Lewin, M. Malin, S. McLennan, S. Maurice, N. Melikechi, A. Mezzacappa, R. Milliken, H. Newsom, A. Ollila, S.K. Rowland, V. Sautter, M. Schmidt, S. Schröder, C. d’Uston, D. Vaniman, and R. Williams. (2015)

J. Geophys. Res.,

☼■ Understanding the signature of rock coatings in laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy data. Lanza N.L., A.M. Ollila, A. Cousin, R.C. Wiens, S. Clegg, N. Mangold, N. Bridges, D. Cooper, M. Schmidt, J. Berger, R. Arvidson, N. Melikechi, H.E. Newsom, R. Tokari, C. Hardgrove, A. Mezzacappa, R.S. Jackson, B. Clark, O. Forni, S. Maurice, M. Nachon, R.B. Anderson, J. Blank, M. Deans, D. Delapp, R. Léveillé, R. McInroy, R. Martinez, P.-Y. Meslin, P. Pinet. (2015)

Icarus, doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2014.05.0380.1:5500

Hydrogen detection with ChemCam at Gale crater. Schroeder S.,  P.-Y. Meslin, O. Gasnault, S. Maurice, A. Cousin, R.C. Wiens, W. Rapin, M.D. Dyar, N. Mangold, O. Forni, M. Nachon, S. Clegg, J.R. Johnson, J. Lasue, S. Le Mouélic, A. Ollila, P. Pinet, V. Sautter, D. Vaniman. (2015)


☼■ First detection of fluorine on Mars: Implications for Gale Crater’s geochemistry. Forni O., M. Gaft, M. J. Toplis, S.M. Clegg, S. Maurice, R.C. Wiens, N. Mangold, O. Gasnault,  V. Sautter, S. Le Mouélic, P.-Y. Meslin, M. Nachon, R.E. McInroy, A.M. Ollila, A. Cousin, J.C. Bridges, N.L. Lanza, M.D. Dyar. (2015)

Geophys. Res. Lett., doi:10.1002/2014GL062742 

☼■ ChemCam results from the Shaler outcrop in Gale crater, Mars. Anderson R., J.C. Bridges, A. Williams, L. Edgard, A. Ollila, J. Williams, M. Nachon, N. Mangold, M. Fisk, J. Schieber, S. Gupta, G. Dromart, R. Wiens, S. Le Mouélic, O. Forni, N. Lanza, A. Mezzacappa, V. Sautter, D. Blaney, B. Clark, S. Clegg, O. Gasnault, J. Lasuel, R. Léveillé, E. Lewin, K.W. Lewis, S. Maurice, H. Newsom, S.P. Schwenzer, D. Vaniman. (2015)



●☼■□ Calcium sulfate veins characterized by ChemCam/Curiosity at Gale crater, Mars. M. Nachon, N. Mangold, O. Forni, L.C. Kah, A. Cousin, R.C. Wiens, R. Anderson, D. Blaney, J.G. Blank, F. Calef, S.M. Clegg, C. Fabre, M.R. Fisk, O. Gasnault, J.P. Grotzinger, R. Kronyak, N.L. Lanza, J. Lasue, L. Le Deit, S. Le Mouélic, S. Maurice, P.-Y. Meslin, D.Z. Oehler, V. Payré, W. Rapin, S. Schröder, K. Stack, D. Sumner. (2014)

J. Geophys. Res.,

☼■ Elemental Geochemistry of Sedimentary Rocks at Yellowknife Bay, Gale Crater, Mars. S. McLennan, R. Anderson, J. Bell III, J. Bridges, F. Calef, J.Campbell, B. Clark, S. Clegg, P. Conrad, A. Cousin, D. Des Marais, G. Dromart, M. Dyar, L. Edgar, B. Ehlmann, C. Fabre, O. Forni, O. Gasnault, R. Gellert, S. Gordon, J, Grant, J. Grotzinger, S. Gupta, K. Herkenhoff, J. Hurowitz, P. King, S. Le Mouélic, L. Leshin, R. Léveillé, K. Lewis, N. Mangold, S. Maurice, D. Ming, R. Morris, M. Nachon, H. Newsom, A. Ollila, G. Perrett, M. Rice, M. Schmidt, S. Schwenzer, K. Stack, E. Stolper, D. Sumner, A. Treiman, S. VanBommel, D. Vaniman, A. Vasavada, R. Wiens, R. Yingst and the MSL Team. (2014)

Science, doi:10.1126/science.1244734 

☼■□ Compositions of coarse and fine particles in martian soils at Gale: a window into the production of soils. Cousin A., P.Y. Meslin, R.C. Wiens, W. Rapin, N. Mangold, C. Fabre, O. Gasnault, O. Forni, R. Tokar, A. Ollila, S. Schröder, J. Lasue, S. Maurice, V. Sautter, H. Newsom, D. Vaniman, S. Le Mouélic, D. Dyar, G. Berger, D. Blaney, M. Nachon, G. Dromart, N. Lanza, B. Clark, S. Clegg, W. Goetz, J. Berger, B. Barraclough, D. Delapp. (2014)

Icarus, doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2014.04.052

☼■ High manganese concentrations in rocks at Gale crater, Mars.

Lanza N.L, W.W. Fischer, R.C. Wiens, J. Grotzinger, A.M. Ollila, A. Cousin, R.B. Anderson, B. C. Clark, R. Gellert, N. Mangold, S. Maurice, S. Le Mouélic, M. Nachon, M. Schmidt, J. Berger, S.M. Clegg, O. Forni, C. Hardgrove, N. Melikechi, H.E. Newsom, V. Sautter. (2014)

Geophys. Res. Lett., doi:10.1002/2014GL060329

☼■□ Diagenetic origin of nodules in the Sheepbed member, Yellowknife Bay formation, Gale crater, Mars. Stack K.M., J.P. Grotzinger, L.C. Kah, M.E. Schmidt, N. Mangold, K.S. Edgett, D.Y. Sumner, K.L. Siebach, M. Nachon, R. Lee, D.L. Blaney, L.P.Deflores, L.A. Edgar, A.G. Fairén, L.A. Leshin, S. Maurice, D.Z. Oehler, M.S. Rice, R.C. Wiens. (2014)

J. Geophys. Res., doi:10.1002/2014JE004617


Education and appointments

2020 - Current   Associate Research Scientist.

Texas A&M University.

2018 - 2020   Postdoctoral Research Associate.

Texas A&M University.

2016 - 2018   Postdoctoral Research Associate.

University of California Davis.

Science collabortaor, NASA Mars Science Laboratory mission - Mast Camera (Mastcam), Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI), Mars Descent Imager (MARDI) Team member.

2012 - 2016   Ph.D. Earth and Planetary Sciences. Université de Nantes - Laboratoire Planétologie et Géodynamique, France. 

Dissertation: "Study of martian surface chemistry and mineralogy, using ChemCam data and LIBS (Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy) experiments".

Science collaborator, NASA Mars Science Laboratory mission - ChemCam (Chemistry and Camera) instrument Team member. 

2010 - 2012   M.Sc. Earth and Planetary Sciences. Université Paris Sud, France.

2007 - 2010   B.Sc. Earth and Environmental Sciences. Université Nice Sophia Antipolis, France.

Including 1 year ERASMUS exchange at Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain.


  • 2019: Texas A&M University Postdoctroal Scholar Travel Award.
  • 2017: University of California Davis Postdoctoral Symposium Talk Award.
  • 2014, 2015: NASA Group Achievement Awards: MSL ChemCam instrument Science Team.

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