Science & Technology

USU's Science Unwrapped 'Cleans Up With Geology' Friday, March 18

Geoscientist Katie Potter is featured speaker for in-person, online public outreach event

By Mary-Ann Muffoletto |

USU geoscientist Katie Potter points to basalt samples collected during a NSF-funded JOIDES Resolution research ship expedition in the south Atlantic Ocean. She speaks at Science Unwrapped Friday, March 18, at 7 p.m. at USU. All are welcome.

Basalt, which accounts for most of the Earth’s volcanic rock, may be the “Rodney Dangerfield” of rock types. That is, the grayish black igneous rock, also found on the Moon, Mars and Venus, may not get the respect it deserves.

“Basalts are among the most common and overlooked rock types on Earth,” says Utah State University geoscientist Katie Potter. “Yet they may hold the key to helping us reduce atmospheric carbon dioxide.”

Potter, who recently completed Expedition 391 aboard the National Science Foundation-funded JOIDES Resolution research ship of the Walvis Ridge hotspot in the Atlantic Ocean southeast of Africa, is featured speaker at USU’s Science Unwrapped Friday, March 18. She presents “What Goes Up, Must Come Down: Cleaning up the Atmosphere with Geology” at 7 p.m. in the Emert Auditorium, Room ESLC 130, of the Eccles Science Learning Center on campus.

Admission is free and all ages are welcome.

Potter’s March 18 talk, which will also be livestreamed via AggieCast from the Science Unwrapped website, signals a return to in-person, post-talk learning activities conducted by USU student and community volunteer groups.

“We’re very excited to announce our return to in-person learning activities,” says Greg Podgorski, associate dean for undergraduate studies and services in the College of Science and Science Unwrapped chair. “A key component of Science Unwrapped is the opportunity for people of all ages to interact with scientists and to have the chance to experience hands-on learning.”

Guests at the in-person event are encouraged to wear masks.

Established in 2009, Science Unwrapped is a public outreach program of USU’s College of Science.

The continuing schedule for Science Unwrapped’s 2021-22 Science on the Horizon series is:

Friday, March 18: “What Goes Up, Must Come Down: Cleaning Up the Atmosphere with Geology,” Katie Potter, geoscientist

Friday, April 1: “Electric Avenues: Advancing Sustainability through Powered Infrastructure for Roadway Electrification (ASPIRE)”, Regan Zane, electrical engineer

Science Unwrapped talks are recorded and posted online for continued viewing convenience.

For more information, call (435)797-3517, visit the Science Unwrapped website or view the ‘Science Unwrapped at USU’ Facebook page and Twitter profile.


Mary-Ann Muffoletto
Public Relations Specialist
College of Science


Greg Podgorski
Associate Dean for Undergraduates, Science Unwrapped Chair
College of Science


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