Geological and Planetary Sciences
90th Anniversary Celebration



The Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences began as the department of geology at Caltech in 1926. Also in 1926, the Seismo Lab began cooperative operations with the new geology division. The Charles Dayton Arms and Seeley W. Mudd Laboratories of Geological Sciences (Arms and North Mudd) were built in 1938. The entry into geochemistry around 1950 marked a remarkable transition to a more quantitative approach to earth science. The entry into planetary science in the 1960s took advantage of the new U.S. space program of unmanned exploration and the proximity of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. At that time, the division adopted its current name. The Seeley G. Mudd Building of Geophysics and Planetary Sciences (South Mudd) was built in 1974, and this marked the move of the Seismological Laboratory onto campus from its previous location at the Kresge laboratory. During the 1990s, the division expanded in new directions, building strong programs in geobiology and in environmental science, including atmospheric science and oceanographic activities that were previously not present at Caltech. Celebrating 90 years at Caltech, our group of highly active, influential, and successful young scientists attest to the continuing vitality and world leadership of the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences. For more GPS history please visit -

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Charles Dayton Arms Building
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Seeley G. Mudd Building (North Mudd)
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Robinson courtyard with Engelmann oak - 1965
Credit: Caltech Archives
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Robinson Laboratory of Astrophysics
Credit: Caltech Archives
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Robinson Laboratory of Astrophysics
Credit: Caltech Archives
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Linde + Robinson Laboratory
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ARMS Driveway
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Perception Sculpture
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Proposal for geophysics-planetary science building (South Mudd)
Credit: Caltech Archives
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Arms and Mudd labs with Throop Hall in background - 1965
Credit: Caltech Archives
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Mudd building of geophysics - 1974
Credit: Caltech Archives
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Seeley G. Mudd Building ( South Mudd )