Dr. Giles M. Marion

Affiliate Associate Research Professor

Professional Interests

Dr. Marion is currently refining a computer model known as FREZCHEM (FREeZing CHEMistry), which simulates and predicts the behavior of substances at extremely cold temperatures. His interest in thermodynamics led him to develop FREZCHEM, which allows researchers to look at and predict geochemical processes at sub-zero temperatures. The potential applications are numerous, including examining the possibility of life on other planets, mine reclamation in cold regions, gas hydrate stability in oceans, and commercial refrigeration processes.

Marion is currently working on a project for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), adding acid chemistry to the model to make it applicable to the behavior of acidic solutions in extremely cold conditions. This research will aid NASA’s understanding of Europa, a frigid moon of Jupiter where patches of ice and frozen sulfuric acid may overlay a briny ocean. Future work includes the use of FREZCHEM to examine microbial life in extreme environments, iron chemistry on Mars, and gas hydrate chemistry on Earth, Mars, and Europa.

Research Areas of Interest and Expertise

  • Soil Chemistry
  • Global Climate Change
  • Biogeochemical Process Modeling
  • Planetary Geochemistry

Research Projects


Ph.D. 1974 University of California, Berkeley Soil Chemistry
M.S. 1968 Syracuse University Forest Soils
B.S. 1965 Syracuse University Forestry
A.A.S. 1963 Paul Smith's College Forestry

Publications & Presentations


Marion, G. M., Murray, A. E., Wagner, B., Fritsen, C. H., Kenig, F., Doran, P. (2013). Carbon Sequestration and Release from Antarctic Lakes: Lake Vida and West Lake Bonney (McMurdo Dry Valleys), Aquatic Geochemistry, 19, (2), 135-145, Springer Netherlands


Verburg, P. S., Young, A. C., Stevenson, B. A., Glanzmann, I., Arnone, J. A., Marion, G. M., Holmes, C., Nowak, R. S. (2012). Do increased summer precipitation and N deposition alter fine root dynamics in a Mojave Desert ecosystem?, Global Change Biology, 19, 948-956, doi: 10.1111/gcb.12082


Marion, G. M., Catling, D. C., Kargel, J. S. (2009). Br/Cl partioning in chloride minerals in the Burns formation on Mars, Icarus, 200, 436-445
Marion, G. M., Crowley, J. K., Thomson, B. J., Kargel, J. S., Bridges, N. T., Hook, S. J., Baldridge, A., Brown, A. J., Ribeiro Da Luz, B., De Souza Filho, C. R. (2009). FREZCHEM: A geochemical model for cold aqueous environments, Computers & Geosciences, 36, 10-15
Marion, G. M., Crowley, J. K., Thomson, B. J., Kargel, J. S., Bridges, N. T., Hook, S. J., Baldridge, A., Brown, A. J., Ribeiro Da Luz, B., De Souza Filho, C. R. (2009). Modeling aluminum-silicon chemistries and applications to Australian acidic playa lakes as analogues for Mars, Geochim Cosmochim Acta, 73, 3493-3511
Marion, G. M., Millero, F. J., Feistel, R. (2009). Precipitation of solid phase calcium carbonates and their effect on application of seawater Sa-T-P models, Ocean Science, 5, 285-291


Caldwell, T. G., McDonald, E. V., Young, M. H., Bacon, S. N., Marion, G. M. (2008). Numerical Simulations of Salt Accumulation in a Hyper-Arid Soil Chronosequence In the Sonoran Desert, Am. Soc. Agron. National Meetings: Houston, TX, Paper 335-9.
Marion, G. M., Kargel, J. S. (2008). Cold Aqueous Planetary Geochemistry with FREZCHEM: From Modeling to the Search for Life at the Limits, Springer: Berlin, Germany
Marion, G. M., Verburg, P. S., McDonald, E. V., Arnone, J. A. (2008). Modeling salt movement through a Mojave Desert soil, Journal of Arid Environments, 72, 1009-1030
Marion, G. M., Verburg, P. S., Stevenson, B., Arnone, J. A. (2008). Soluble element distributions in a Mojave Desert soil, Soil Science Society of America Journal, 72, 1815-1823


Gaidos, E., Marion, G. M. (2003). Geological and Geochemical Legacy of a Cold Early Mars, Journal of Geophysical Research, 108, (E6), doi: 10.1029/2002JE002000
Marion, G. M., Catling, D. C., Kargel, J. S. (2003). Modeling Aqueous Ferrous Iron Chemistry at low temperatures with application to Mars, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 67, 4251-4266
Marion, G. M., Davis, W. S., Eicken, H., Fritsen, C. H., Navarro-Gonzalez, R., Payne, M. C. (2003). The search for life on Europa: limiting environmental factors, potential habitats, and Earth analogues., Astrobiology, 785-811
Marion, G. M., Fritsen, C. H., Eicken, H., Payne, M. (2003). The search for life on Europa: Limiting environmental factors, potential habitats, and Earth analogues, Astrobiology, 3, (4), 785-811


Marion, G. M. (2002). A molal-based model for strong acid chemistry at low temperatures, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 66, (14), 2499-2516


Kargel, J. S., Kaye, J. Z., Head, J. W., Marion, G. M., Sassen, R., Crowley, J. K., Ballesteros, O. P., Grant, S. A., Hogenboom, D. L. (2000). Europa's Crust and Ocean: Origin, Composition, and the Prospects for Life, Icarus, 148, (1), 226-265, doi: 10.1006/icar.2000.6471
Marion, G. M., Pelton, D. K. (2000). Frozen soil barriers for explosives containment, 13 p., CRREL Special Report