Jeffrey L. Bada is professor of Marine Chemistry and former Director of the NASA Specialized Center of Research and Training (NSCORT) in Exobiology in the Geologic Research Division at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California at San Diego.
He obtained his PhD in Chemistry from UCSD under the direction of Stanley Miller in 1968. Prof. Bada’s research deals with the geochemistry of amino acids, organic cosmogeochemistry, the sources and stability of organic compounds on the primitive Earth and other solar system bodies, the origin of homochirality on Earth and the detection of possible remnants of life on solar system bodies both by in situ analyses and from the study of meteorites.
Dr. Bada has played a pioneering role in the development of the Mars Organic Detector (MOD) instrument package that is designed to search for amino acids and other organic compounds directly on the surface of Mars during future ESA and NASA missions. He has been PI and Co-I on several NASA grants for the development of space-craft based in situ instrumentation. Dr. Bada was PI for the development and design of the Urey instrument that is designed to search for evidence of both extinct and extant life on Mars.
He is presently a co-I at the Center for Chemical Evolution at Georgia Institute of Technology which is supported by both NASA and NASA.