Nan Liu applies a suite of advanced micro-analytical techniques to understand the stellar origins and formation timing of presolar grains, nucleosynthetic processes in their parent stars, and condensation formation processes in stellar environments.
Nan’s current research interests include supernova stellar nucleosynthesis, analytical development on isotopic analysis of micron-sized samples, and coordinated microanalysis using different techniques.
Nan Liu obtained her PhD in Cosmochemistry from the University of Chicago (Department of Geophysical Sciences) in 2014. Her thesis work focused on understanding the s-process (slow neutron-capture process) nucleosynthesis in asymptotic giant branch (AGB) stars through isotopic analysis of heavy elements (Sr, Ba, Nd) in μm-sized mainstream SiC grains using resonance ionization mass spectrometry (RIMS). She then spent three years working as a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution for Science, under the direction of Dr. Larry Nittler, where she continued her presolar grain research by combining a suite of microanalytical techniques (NanoSIMS, microRaman, FIB-TEM, and RIMS) for presolar grain analysis with a focus on supernova dust.