Nathalie Cabrol

Nathalie has been a Principal Investigator (PI) at the SETI Institute since 1998. She leads projects in planetary science and astrobiology, develops science exploration strategies for Mars, Titan, and the Outer Solar System icy moons, and designs robotic field experiments. She explores high altitude lakes in the Andes where environmental conditions are analogous to early Mars. With her team, she documents life’s adaptation to extreme environments, the effect of rapid climate change on lake ecosystems and habitats, its geobiological signatures, and relevance to planetary exploration.


Born: 1963

Hometown: Mountain View, CA

Education: Ph.D. in Planetary Geology

Occupation: Astrobiologist

Expeditions: 2002, 2003, 2004 in some of the highest lakes in the world in the Andes. More to come!

Favorite Place To Be: Underwater or interpreting images from Mars…

Best Discovery: A 10,000-year-old arrowhead found in 2003 in the Andes by ancestors of the Inca people on the shore of an ancient lake

Favorite Item To Have In The Field: Friends

Personal Hero: My husband

Hobbies: Mountaineering, diving, music, art


Advice: If one dreams hard enough, his or her dream will come true