Welcome to the Habitability Laboratories,
"hab·it·a·ble (/ˈhabədəb(ə)l/) adjective — suitable or good enough to live in."
My name is Dr. Vlada Stamenković, I am a Research Scientist at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where I explore the co-evolution of planets and life from origins until the bitter end—on Earth, in our solar system (with a big focus on Mars Science), and on rocky exoplanets. With the goal to understand what makes a planet truly habitable (more than just liquid water) and also inhabited.
To achieve this goal, I study the fundamental geodynamical principles behind mantle convection, tectonic evolution, and the formation and transport of volatiles through mantle and crust driven by volcanism and low temperature processes such as, e.g., serpentinization and radiolysis of water – and explore how such planetary processes co-evolve with a planet’s fluid envelope (groundwater, oceans, and atmosphere), its redox gradients (from hydrogen to oxygen), microbial organisms, and bigger bugs like us humans.
Next to trying to understand theoretically how planets and life co-evolve, I am discovering geophysics-life connections in the underground of our own planet and use my days to enable next generation missions to explore the Mars subsurface in the quest for life and resources—helping to enable Humans live on the Red Planet and to get us closer to the stars above and within.