Enlarge / Lindy Elkins-Tanton, second from left, and colleagues in Siberia.Scott Simper / ASU
Lindy Elkins-Tanton is a Siberian-river-running, arc-welding, code-writing, patent-holding, company-founding, asteroid-exploring, igneous petrologist professor. At various times, she has been a farmer, a trainer of competition sheepdogs, a children’s book author, and a management consultant for Boeing Helicopters. She’s currently a professor at Arizona State University, she helps run a learning company, and she is the principal investigator for NASA’s “Psyche” mission to a metal asteroid.
Her self-described “curvy” career path has taken her research into planet formation, magma oceans, mass extinctions, and mantle melting. The results she’s
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