Research Group


Kara Marsac - Geochemical interactions between recycled and formation waters during drilling operations

PhD Student and WE2ST Fellow

Hello, my name is Kara Marsac. I am pursuing my PhD in Geochemistry as a ConocoPhillips Center for a Sustainable WE2ST Fellow. My research focuses on mapping water quality in the Denver and Permian Basins and modeling geochemical reactions to see if non potable water can be used for oil and gas purposes. I have a BS in Geoscience from Eastern Michigan University where I was a Presidential Scholar and completed my undergraduate thesis in algal paleontology. I have a MS from University of Nevada Las Vegas, where my research focused on geochemical modeling of gamma radiation in the bedrock and soil to assist in hazard mapping of radiation contamination and nuclear disaster response. When I'm not busy as a graduate student I enjoying traveling, reading, baking, and playing with my basset hound Penny. 

Elanor Heil - Geochemical impacts of bark beetle infestations

PhD Student

Elli Heil is a Ph.D. student in the Hydrologic Sciences and Engineering Program at Colorado School of Mines. Prior to beginning the Ph.D. program she earned a B.S. in Geology from Georgia State University and a M.S. in Earth and Environmental Sciences from the University of Chicago at Illinois. During this time her research centered on metal cycling in soils as a function of the physical and chemical characteristics of the minerals and organic matter present. During the summer between earning her degrees, she interned as a Hydrologic Technician with the U.S Geological and after earning her M.S. she began working at the Johnson Space Center as part of the Mars Science Team. Here she carried out thermal/evolved gas analysis on Mars soil analogs, specifically looking at the interactions between minerals and perchlorates. Her current research is examining geochemical impacts of bark beetle infestations, specifically metal and organic carbon cycling, in order to model watershed scale reactive transport in affected areas. 


Rania Eldam - Geochemical and hydrological controls on carbon sourcing, transport, and transformation in river systems

PhD student and NSF Graduate Research Fellow

Rania’s Website

Rania Eldam is a PhD student in Geology. Her research focuses on sourcing and transformation of carbon in th East River headwater system in Colorado. She has a MS in Geology from Colorado School of Mines and a BSc in Geological Sciences from the University of Texas at Austin, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude and with Special Honors for her undergraduate thesis, entitled: "Petrogenesis of several serpentinites within the Franciscan Complex and Coast Range Ophiolite, northern California”. She currently represents the Association of Women Geoscientists as the Laramide Chapter President and received the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship for her research and outreach interests in 2014. She has a passion for working with educational outreach, and pursues this passion through organizational affiliations as well as her writing, and is a published author of a children’s STEM educational book series. Outside of these passions, she spends her time hiking, practicing archery, and snuggling on the couch with her two border collie rescue mutts and fluffy white cat.

Hannah Podzorski - Concentration-discharge relationships in Loch Vale, CO

MS Student

Hello, my name is Hannah Podzorski. I am pursuing a MS through the Hydrologic Science and Engineering Program. My research focuses on concentration-discharge relationships in Loch Vale, CO, a part of Rocky Mountain National Park, and how major weather events can affect these relationships. I received my BS from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Geological Engineering and Geology & Geophysics. My undergraduate research there included work in unsaturated soil mechanics and geochemistry. The summer before starting at Mines, I interned as a hydrologist at the USGS. There I worked on modeling stream metabolism in Boulder Creek. In my free time I enjoy traveling, reading, and exploring Colorado. 

Bonnie Sams - Rock derived solute sourcing potential in a variably metamorphosed shale hosted watershed

MS Student

James McGuinness - Mineral dissolution rates in column-scale heterogeneous conditions

MS Student

Margariete Malenda - Effects of flow on mineral dissolution in pore-scale experiments

MS Student