Dr. Pinilla-Alonso received her Ph.D. from the Universidad de La Laguna of Tenerife, Spain. After that, she had different postdoctoral positions at NASA Ames Research center, Moffett Field, USA, at the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía, Granada, Spain, and at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, USA. In 2015, she joined the Florida Space Institute of the University of Central Florida as a visiting scientist before joining it as an Associate Researcher in Planetary Science in 2016. Her work focuses on the study of the surface properties of small bodies in the Solar System.

Dr. Pinilla-Alonso was part of the group that first discovered water ice and complex organics on the surface of the asteroid 24 Themis leading the modeling effort. She also has lead numerous international observational campaigns in support of NASA missions such as New Horizons, OSIRIS-ReX, and Lucy.

Since 2017, Dr. Pinilla-Alonso is also the Deputy Principal Scientist of the Arecibo Observatory and acts as the Science Manager since December 2018. As such, Noemí supports the director of the observatory in leading a group of 20 scientists at different career levels (from senior scientists to Ph. D students)

Research Interests

* Origin and evolution of the Solar System

* Surface composition of primitive small bodies in the Solar System through visible and near-infrared observations and modeling

* Characterization of icy dwarf-planets

* Origin of life on Earth: water ice and organics, the seeds for life.

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