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George D. Cody

George D. Cody specializes in chemical-structural analyses of solid phase organics. His research is focused on determining the diagenetic reactions that define organic sediment maturation. Other interests include examining the molecular structure of extraterrestrial organic solids contained within carbonaceous chondritic meteorites and more recently, comets. He received a Ph.D in geosciences from Pennsylvania State University in 1992, and a BSc in geology from University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1982.

George is also active in the area of transition metal sulfide catalyzed organic reactions with a particular focus of relating this chemistry to the problem of the origins of life early in Earth’s history. George runs these experiments in the Hydrothermal Experimental Laboratory that provides multiple cold seal pressure devices (pressures up to 4000 bars, equivalent to a depth of 15 km into the Earth) and a duel reservoir all titanium high pressure flow reactor (pressures up to 400 bars, equivalent to that at hydrothermal vents at the floor of a 4 km deep ocean). In analytical support of these and other research programs on going at the Geophysical Laboratory, George directs the W. M. Keck Solid State Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) Spectroscopy Laboratory and the Organic Molecular Analysis Laboratory (that includes two gas chromatograph-mass spectrometers and one liquid chromatograph-tandem quadrupole mass spectrometer). Throughout his research career, George has helped pioneer the use of synchrotron-based Scanning Transmission X-ray Microscopy (STXM) (at the Advanced Light Source and the National Synchrotron Light Source) to geochemical and cosmochemical research. He continues to be very active in this area of soft X-ray spectromicroscopy.

George was elected Chair of the Chemistry Division, American Chemistry Society, in 2001, and also elected Chair of the Gordon Research Conference on the Origins of Life in 2005.

Recent Publications

Alexander, C. M. O’D., M. L. Fogel, H. Yabuta, G.D. Cody (in press) The origin and evolution of chondrites recorded in the elemental and isotopic compositions of their macromolecular organic matter. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta.,

Cody G. D., H. Ade, et al. (in press) Quantitative Organic and Light Element analysis of Comet 81P/Wild 2 particles using C-, N-, and O- µ-XANES, Meteor. Planet. Sci. 

Boyce C. K., C. L. Hotton, M. L. Fogel, G. D. Cody, R. M. Hazen, A. H. Knoll, F. M. Heuber Devonian landscape heterogeneity recorded by a giant fungus. Geology 35, 399-402 (2007) 

Cody, G. D., J. H. Scott, The Roots of Metabolism, Planets & Life, W. Sullivan, J. Baross (Ed.), Cambridge University Press, 174-186 (2007) 

Yabuta H., L. B. Williams, G. D. Cody, C. M. O’D. Alexander, S. Pizzarello, The insoluble carbonaceous material of CM chondrites: A possible source of discrete organic compounds under hydrothermal conditions, Met. & Planet. Sci. 42, 37-48. (2007)

Sandford S. A., et al. Organics Captured from Comet 81P/Wild 2 by the Stardust Spacecraft. Science 314, 1720-1724.

Cody G. D. (2005) Geocatalysis to Biocatalysis: Geochemical Connections to Acetyl CoA Metabolism, Elements 1, 139-143. (2006) 

Cody, G. D., B. O. Mysen, S. K. Lee, Structure vs. Composition: A 1H MAS and 1H-29Si CPMAS NMR Study of Quenched Glasses along the Na2O-SiO2-H2O Join. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta. 69, 2373-2384. (2005) 

Lee, S. K., K. Mibe, Y.Fei, G. D. Cody, B. O Mysen., Structure of B2O3 Glass at High Pressure: A 11B Solid-State NMR Study, Phys. Rev. Lett. 94,165507-1, 4. (2005)

Cody G.D., C. M. O’D. Alexander, NMR studies of chemical structural variation of insoluble organic matter from different carbonaceous chondrite groups. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta. 69, 1085-1097. (2005)