Planetary Science

  • work on a number of topics on comparative planetology, including geology, impact craters, spectroscopy/mapping, water on Mars, planetary rings, atmospheres, ionospheres, meteors and astrobiology, with emphasis on the use of data from the Mars Express, Venus Express, Smart-1, Cassini-Huygens, Demeter, Bepi Colombo and Chandrayaan-1 missions as well as from other relevant facilities

    contact Detlef Koschny, Olivier Witasse, Johannes Benkhoff, Luigi Colangeli, Håkan Svedhem, Dmitri Titov, Jorge Vago, Rita Schulz, Elliot Sefton-Nash or Bernard Foing at ESTEC
    or Patrick Martin or Nicolas Altobelli at ESAC

  • support the scientific preparation of the ExoMars rover mission with regards to early Mars (Noachian) surface and atmospheric history and landing site selection activities, with emphasis on the use of morphologic and spectral data from Mars Express and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, via interaction with the ExoMars rover instrument teams and with MEX and MRO investigators

    contact Elliot Sefton-Nash or Jorge Vago at ESTEC
    or Patrick Martin at ESAC

  • investigation of minor bodies in the solar system, including the Martian moons, to understand their formation and evolution in the frame of planetary system formation, using data from Rosetta, Herschel, other space missions and ground-based observations

    contact Rita Schulz, Detlef Koschny or Olivier Witasse at ESTEC,
    or Nicolas Altobelli or Michael Kueppers at ESAC

  • investigation of asteroids, cosmic dust and planetary discs, with space-based and ground-based observations and numerical models, to better constrain the orbital dynamics and physical and chemical properties of these objects

    contact Detlef Koschny, Rita Schulz, Luigi Colangeli or Håkan Svedhem at ESTEC
    Nicolas Altobelli or Michael Kueppers at ESAC

  • investigate the physics and chemistry of terrestrial planets and minor bodies through numerical modelling of their interior and near surface layers in order to better understand their formation and thermal evolution

    contact Johannes Benkhoff, Jorge Vago, Olivier Witasse  or Joe Zender at ESTEC

  • petrology and astrobiology analysis of mineral and organic samples exposed in Earth orbit or from Moon-Mars-planetary simulated analogues

    contact Bernard Foing at ESTEC

  • research on comets (photometry, evolution), asteroids, Trans-Neptunian Objects as well as meteors

contact Mark Kidger at ESAC



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