Latest Space News
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
Twice as big as Earth, the super-Earth 55 Cancri e was thought to have lava flows on its surface. The planet is so close to its star, the same side of the planet always faces the star, such that the planet has permanent day and night sides. Based on a 2016 study using data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, scientists speculated that lava would flow freely in lakes on the starlit side and become hardened on the face of perpetual darkness. The lava on the dayside would reflect radiation from th...
Sat, 18 Nov 2017 13:03:00 +0100
Today, NASA launched NOAA's next-generation polar satellite, the Joint Polar Satellite System-1, into space. Two Raytheon (NYSE: RTN) weather programs are mission-critical components of the satellite's mission: the JPSS Common Ground System and the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite sensor. Svalbard, Norway, is home to part of a global network of receiving stations that process and distribute polar satellite data to users worldwide. Photo taken at Kongsberg Satellite Services plateau, ...
Sat, 18 Nov 2017 08:00:00 +0100
A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta II rocket carrying the Joint Polar Satellite System-1 (JPSS-1) for NASA and National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) lifted off from Space Launch Complex-2 on Nov. 18 at 1:47 a.m. PST. The JPSS program provides the nation's next generation polar-orbiting operational environmental satellite system, delivering key observations for the nation's essential projects and services, including forecasting weather in advance and assessing environmental hazards...
Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
Landing on Mars is difficult and not always successful. Well-designed advance testing helps. An ambitious NASA Mars rover mission set to launch in 2020 will rely on a special parachute to slow the spacecraft down as it enters the Martian atmosphere at over 12,000 mph (5.4 kilometers per second). Preparations for this mission have provided, for the first time, dramatic video of the parachute opening at supersonic speed. The Mars 2020 mission will seek signs of ancient Martian life by investiga...
Thu, 16 Nov 2017 15:07:00 +0100
The U.S. Navy's Communications Satellite Program Office, PMW 146, and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) handed over full operational control of the fifth Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) satellite to the Naval Satellite Operations Center (NAVSOC). The October 11 milestone followed the successful completion of the MUOS-5 satellite's on-orbit testing and delivery of all operational products needed to "fly" the satellite. In April, the Navy, working with Army Forces Strategic Command (ARSTRAT), con...
Thu, 16 Nov 2017 14:04:00 +0100
As part of ESA's strategy to foster commercial competitiveness in Europe while focusing on its core aims, the agency has transferred ownership of several ground tracking stations for reuse by external organisations. By the end of 2017, ESA will have transferred three stations to national organisations in Spain and Portugal, who will take over the provision of satellite tracking services to a wide variety of commercial customers. The three stations involved in the transfer are all equipped ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 19:33:00 +0100
Boeing [NYSE:BA] won large commitments across its twin- and single-aisle commercial airplane families, debuted key capabilities including the CST-100 Starliner docking and KC-46 refueling simulators, and announced services agreements at the 2017 Dubai Airshow. "This has been a very successful show for Boeing. Our regional customers have maintained their trust in our products and technology, and our partnerships in the Middle East region continue to grow," said Bernard Dunn, President, Boeing ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 12:00:00 +0100
A temperate Earth-sized planet has been discovered only 11 light-years from the Solar System by a team using ESO's unique planet-hunting HARPS instrument. The new world has the designation Ross 128 b and is now the second-closest temperate planet to be detected after Proxima b. It is also the closest planet to be discovered orbiting an inactive red dwarf star, which may increase the likelihood that this planet could potentially sustain life. Ross 128 b will be a prime target for ESO's Extremely ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 11:29:00 +0100
Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), has been chosen by the Italian space agency ASI to develop an instrument called RIME (Radar sounder for Icy Moons Exploration) for the JUICE (JUpiter Icy moons Explorer) mission, part of the European Space Agency's "2015-25 Cosmic Vision" program. Scheduled for launch in 2022 with an expected arrival in 2029, the JUICE mission is designed to study the Jovian system and more specifically its icy moons, Ganymede, Call...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
The Ariane 5 for Arianespace's December 12 year-ending flight for 2017 has completed its initial build-up at the Spaceport in French Guiana - where preparations also are moving ahead with four satellite passengers that will further expand Europe's Galileo global navigation system once in their final orbit. During activity in the Spaceport's Launcher Integration Building, this heavy-lift vehicle for Arianespace Flight VA240 underwent the assembly process that began by mating its two solid prop...
Tue, 14 Nov 2017 19:47:00 +0100
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded BAE Systems a contract worth up to $12.8 million to develop an innovative space evaluation and analysis testbed to support the development, integration, evaluation and analysis of advanced space enterprise command and control (C2) tools and capability technologies. The U.S. military must be able to quickly establish situational awareness and execute operations in space. Within the space domain, many thousands of objects that ar...
Tue, 14 Nov 2017 13:45:00 +0100
Orbital ATK (NYSE: OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, today announced that the "S.S. Gene Cernan" CygnusTM spacecraft successfully completed its rendezvous and berthing maneuvers with the International Space Station earlier this morning. This marks the company's eighth successful berthing with the orbiting laboratory. Cygnus launched into orbit aboard an Orbital ATK Antares(tm) rocket at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on November 12. The spacecraft then executed a ser...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 17:45:00 +0100
Thales Alenia Space has signed a contract with ArianeGroup, prime contractor and design authority of Ariane 6, to design, develop, qualify and manufacture the telemetry transmitter of the new European launcher. The telemetry transmitter is responsible for transmitting to the ground the data generated by the launcher throughout the whole launch mission. It is the first contract of the company in Spain in the launchers segment. After three decades of activity in the space sector participating i...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 17:00:00 +0100
What seemed at first like a rare instance of a huge, ancient galaxy revealed itself to be an even rarer pair of extremely massive galaxies, seen on the brink of merging when the Universe was only a billion years old. This outstanding source was first identified by ESA's Herschel space observatory, and later exposed in greater detail with the ground-based Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile. The earliest galaxies in the 13.8 billion-year history of our cosmos starte...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 16:00:00 +0100
Gas giant Jupiter, organic molecules in star-forming clouds and baby galaxies in the distant Universe are among the first targets for which data will be immediately available from the James Webb Space Telescope once it begins casting its powerful gaze on the Universe in 2019. Thirteen "early release" programmes were chosen from more than 100 proposals after a competitive peer-review selection process within the astronomical community. The programmes have been allocated nearly 500 hours of obs...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
After a successful year-long test campaign by Airbus at IABG in Ottobrunn near Munich, the twin GRACE-FO (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment Follow-On) satellites will soon travel to their launch site in California. During testing, the gravity-measuring satellites, which will track the continuous movement of liquid water, ice and the solid Earth due to Earth's changing seasons, weather and climate processes, earthquakes and even human activities, were subjected to conditions similar to t...
Sun, 12 Nov 2017 16:15:00 +0100
Orbital ATK (NYSE:OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, successfully launched its Antares(tm) rocket carrying a Cygnus(tm) spacecraft today at 7:19 a.m. EST, from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia. The launch is Orbital ATK's eighth cargo delivery mission to the International Space Station for NASA. During the mission, designated OA-8, Cygnus will deliver vital equipment, supplies and experiments to the astronauts aboard the space station, as well a...
Fri, 10 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
A contract for two new generation communications satellites was signed today by Turksat with Airbus Defence and Space. The satellites, Turksat 5A and Turksat 5B, are based on the latest Electric Orbit Raising (EOR) version of Airbus' highly reliable Eurostar E3000 platform, which uses electric propulsion for in-orbit raising and station-keeping. "We are very pleased to welcome Turksat as a new Eurostar customer for the most powerful satellites of their fleet. We were the first to demonstra...
Thu, 9 Nov 2017 14:04:00 +0100
NASA's Orion spacecraft aims to send humans further into space than ever before, and ESA's European Service Module will provide the essentials for keeping the astronauts alive and on course. A review of the programme by NASA to assess progress is now showing a launch date from December 2019 to June 2020. The first Exploration Mission-1 will circle the Moon without astronauts to lay the foundation and prove the technology for a second mission with a crew. In Bremen, Germany, integration ...
Thu, 9 Nov 2017 11:42:00 +0100
A UK company has been selected to undertake the Assembly, Integration and Test (AIT) for a satellite which will help tackle climate change, Science Minister Jo Johnson announced today. Thales Alenia Space has signed a contract with the UK Space Agency to work on MicroCarb, a joint UK-French satellite mission which will measure sources and sinks of carbon, the principal greenhouse gas driving global warming. It is the first European mission intended to characterise greenhouse gas fluxes on Ear...
More space news...
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    Personal information
     Name:<withheld>
     Age:<withheld>
     Country:<withheld>
     Location:<withheld>
    Contact information
     Email:<withheld>
     Phone:<withheld>
     Mobile:<withheld>
    Candidate Profile
     Date Submitted:13-01-2014
     Last Modified:13-01-2014 (01:49)
    Job information
     Current job:PhD student
     Employment Term:Temp/Contract
     Job location:Own country
     Date available:immediately
     Industry:Satellite Operators
     KeywordsData analysis, published report writing, physics and astronomy, scientific journalism.
    CV

    Education

    2004-2008 Physics with Astrophysics MPhys, University of Bristol, 2.1, with Honours.

    2010 Postgraduate research student, Galaxies and Observational Cosmology, School of Physics and Astronomy, Cardiff University.

    Employment

    Academic / Research

    2007 • Summer Studentship, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Exeter. Developing a method to detect young stars in colour magnitude diagrams using infrared excess due to their circumstellar discs

    2008 • Summer Studentship, Particle Physics Group, University of Bristol. Finite element modelling with an aim to reduce the magnetic field surrounding components in the 2013 upgrade of the LHC

    2008-2010 Physicist in Acoustics, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) Porton Down, Research working on a variety of military and non-military applications for the UK Ministry of Defence.

    Other employment

    2002 • System Support Unit, North Devon College, Work experience placement providing IT support at a Further Education College.

    2002-2006 Dishwasher and Food prep, Pasty Presto, Atlantic Village, Holiday and weekend work while in full-time education.

    2006 • Factory worker, Greenfield Engineering, Holsworthy, Physical work producing mainly office supplies including desks, chairs and room dividers.

    Other Experience

    2012 Astronomical Observing, James Clerk Maxwell Telescope, Observing experience on Mauna Kea and continuous use of data reduction tools for the sub-mm SCUBA2 instrument since then.

    2011 Section Editor, Popular Astronomy Magazine, Editor of the Young Stargazers section, bringing together and writing articles on astronomy, astrophysics and space travel for a young audience.

    2013 Herschel UK outreach website, herschel.cf.ac.uk, Tasked with updating the website, including rewriting the science pages.

    2011/12 School Astronomy Club, St. Joseph’s R.C. Primary School, Penarth, Cardiff, Helped run an after school astronomy club where pupils were taught about astronomy topics and shown how to use a telescope to observe the sky.

    Computer skills

    2004 Microsoft Office, Extensive use of Word and Excel for all kinds of applications. A Windows user from an early age.

    2007 LATEX, Used for all reports written during my time with the MoD and all contributions to Astronomy journals. Experience with many types of documents including letters, scientific journal articles and CVs. Used daily.

    2003-2004 Mathematica, Used during my final year research project.

    2008 MATLAB, Used exclusively during my employment at DSTL Porton Down for signal processing and plotting. During my PhD I have used MATLAB for data analysis, image display and manipulation on a daily basis.

    2010 IDL, Used extensively for manipulation of .fits files due to the extensive IDL Astrolibrary, including convolving and regridding data, and production of new astronomical maps.

    2010 Python, A work in progress. I have a working knowledge from the start of my PhD where I used the Herschel Space Observatory observer’s tool, HIPE, which uses a modified version of the language.

    Research interests

    My work at Cardiff has focussed on infrared observations of nearby galaxies. The collaborations I am a part of have utilised far infrared data from the Herschel Space Observatory to understand galaxy evolution from their dust properties. Nearby galaxies give us the best views we have in the universe and the opportunity to study the small scale physics that determines how structures form on much larger scales. A significant portion of my work has been on the Herschel Reference Survey (HRS) attempting to determine differences in the dust and star formation properties of galaxies based on their morphology, Hubble-type and stellar mass. The primary conclusion of the work was that the presence of a bar has little effect on the global dust properties of the galaxies. An immediate piece of follow-up would be to isolate the circumnuclear regions from the disk of resolved barred galaxies to determine whether star formation may be enhanced in the centre, and quenched in the outer regions by the funnelling of material. One difference that was observed, is that the barred galaxies were generally smaller (low stellar mass) suggesting that by the current epoch massive spirals have created and destroyed their bars - assuming bar creation is a cyclic process. The majority of my time has been spent on the Local Group galaxies Andromeda (M31) and the Triangulum (M33). As part of this I have used data from a variety of instruments in addition to Herschel, including GALEX and Spitzer. I have measured unobscured and embedded star formation rates using ultraviolet and infrared data, in order to calibrate against the total far-infrared luminosity and test the star formation law on 140pc scales. My work shows that the star formation law with molecular gas is approximately linear on small scales in these galaxies but I do find evidence of a sub-linear law in M31. This suggests two immediate follow-up pieces of work. The first is to test beyond doubt that the star formation law is sub-linear in M31, which would suggest star formation becomes less efficient at high gas densities. This would require high fidelity data of dense gas tracers and exploration of star formation indicator calibration on small scales. The second is if the star formation law is linear, as long as we trace the dense molecular gas, the next step is to determine how the more diffuse atomic gas, HI, becomes molecular and where it does so more efficiently. One test would be to determine a dust grain size as the greater the surface area to volume of dust, the more sites are available for molecules to form. I would like to continue work on star formation/evolution and the interstellar medium on large scales and nearby galaxy evolution but would also welcome a move to probing the more distant universe as during my degree my main interest was cosmology, evidenced by my seeking out a cosmology topic for my final year project. I would also like the opportunity to broaden my knowledge of astrophysics while I’m at this early stage in my career.

    Publications

    First Author

    Ford, G. P. et al, 2013; Herschel Exploitation of Local Galaxy Andromeda (HELGA) III: The Star Formation Law in M31.

    Contributor

    Fritz, J. et al, 2012; Herschel Exploitation of Local Galaxy Andromeda (HELGA) I: Global far-infrared and sub-mm morphology

    Smith, M. W. L. et al 2012; Herschel Exploitation of Local Galaxy Andromeda (HELGA) II: Dust and Gas in Andromeda

    Kirk, J. M. et al, 2013; Herschel Exploitation of Local Galaxy Andromeda (HELGA) IV: The distribution and properties of molecular cloud associations in M31.


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