IRF Uppsala
RPF programme
IRF-U Staff
PhD studies
Solar Orbiter
Swedish Institute of Space Physics (59o50.272'N, 17o38.786'E)
IRF-U Space Plasma Physics
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Welcome to the research programme

Space Plasma Physics


Publications and Presentations


Other resources

NEWS -- see also our page in Swedish

12-16 June 2017: We host the Magnetospheres of the Outer Planets workshop here in Uppsala.

2 May 2017: Deadline for applications for the open postdoc and PhD student positions in Astronomy and/or Space Physics advertised by Uppsala University.

26 April 2017: Cassini's first crossing of the ring plane inside the rings of Saturn, marking the beginning of the end of the 20 years the NASA spacecraft, with our Langmuir probe onboard, has spent in space. The final end of mission is in September 15.

22 April 2017, 11:00 - 15:00: At the Ångström laboratory Open House day, we showed ESA's big (8 metres!) model of the Rosetta space probe and the planeterrella with its eerie auroral plasma glow from the University of Leicester.

7 April 2017: In his lecture for the docent degree at Uppsala university, Yuri Khotyaintsev presented the science and techniques behind our electric field measurements in space plasmas.

What we do

We investigate what goes on in space using instruments we build ourselves and fly on spacecraft, ground based instruments, computer simulations and plasma theory. Here are some samples of our research:

What we have in space

For the moment, we have eight instruments in various parts of the solar system, and four more to which we have made a significant contribution.
  • 4 x MMS -- NASA's Magnetospheric MultiScale mission, launched March 13, 2015, for which we provided sensor coating and test equipment for the electric field instruments built by the University of New Hampshire and the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH). More info on the SMART instrument suite for MMS at SwRI.
  • 3 x Swarm -- ESA's three satellites for study of the geomagnetic field, launched in November 22, 2013. We provide instruments to measure the plasma density and temperature in the Earth's ionosphere.
  • 4 x Cluster -- our instruments are exploring Earth's magnetosphere on a flotilla of four ESA spacecraft, launched summer 2000
  • Cassini -- launched by NASA in 1997, exploring the environment of Saturn since June 2004, with our Langmuir probe onboard.
  • BepiColombo -- an ESA-JAXA (Europe-Japan) mission to Mercury, where we are responsible for the electronics and probe surfaces for the MEFISTO sensors of the PWI instrument on the magnetospheric orbiter. Launch 2018, orbit insertion at Mercury 2024. More on Bepi and MEFISTO at KTH.
  • Solar Orbiter -- ESAs mission to investigate the Sun at close distance, for launch in 2018. We are building parts of the RPW instrument to study the solar wind close to its source.
  • JUICE -- ESA's Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer mission. Together with a large team of European, Japanese and American laboratories, we will provide instrumentation for investigating waves, fields and plasmas in the Jovian system. Launch 2022, arrival at Jupiter in 2030.
Our previous instruments in space, no longer operational:
  • Rosetta -- carried our instrument in orbit around comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, launched by ESA in 2004, impact landing on the comet 30 September 2016.
  • Smart-1 -- orbited the moon with our Langmuir probes onboard, launched September 2003, impact landing on the moon 3 September 2006
  • Astrid-2 -- the Swedish microsatellite (only 29 kg) carrying our LINDA instrument to the Earth's upper ionosphere 1998-1999
  • Freja -- detailed measurements of the Earth's upper ionosphere 1992-1996, including our wave investigations
  • Viking -- exploring the Earth's magnetosphere 1986-1987 by means of our wave instrument (and of course other instruments as well)
  • Numerous sounding rockets during the sixties, seventies, and eighties.

Who we are

Senior scientific staff:
  • Mats André, PhD, professor -- head of research programme, PI Cluster EFW
  • David Andrews, PhD -- scientist (Cassini, Mars)
  • Jan Bergman, PhD -- scientist, JUICE RPWI project manager
  • Stephan Buchert, PhD -- scientist (Swarm)
  • Niklas Edberg, PhD -- scientist (Cassini, Rosetta)
  • Anders Eriksson, PhD -- scientist (Rosetta, Cluster)
  • Daniel Graham, PhD -- scientist (Cluster, MMS)
  • Yuri Khotyaintsev, PhD -- scientist (Cluster, MMS)
  • Wenya Li, PhD -- postdoc (Cluster, MMS)
  • Michiko Morooka, PhD -- scientist (Cassini)
  • Hermann Opgenoorth, PhD, professor -- magnetospheres and ionospheres at Earth and other planets
  • Andris Vaivads, PhD, docent -- Solar Orbiter lead CoI, Cluster, MMS
  • Erik Vigren, PhD -- scientist (Cassini, Rosetta)
  • Jan-Erik Wahlund, PhD, docent -- JUICE RPWI PI, Cassini RPWS-LP lead CoI, BepiColombo lead CoI
  • Emiliya Yordanova, PhD -- scientist (MMS, Cluster)
Engineers and computing support:
  • Lennart Åhlén, senior research engineer -- analog electronics
  • Martin Berglund, PhD, research engineer -- electronics
  • Vicki Cripps, research engineer -- PA/QA
  • Jesper Fredriksson, research engineer -- analog electronics
  • Reine Gill, research engineer -- flight s/w, s/c operations
  • Sven-Erik Jansson, senior research engineer -- digital electronics
  • Erik Johansson, PhD, research engineer -- Cassini and Rosetta data handling
  • Jan Karlsson, programmer -- data archiving and computer systems
  • Thomas Nilsson, research engineer -- Swarm and MMS data handling
  • Walter Puccio, senior research engineer -- electronics
  • Farid Shiva, research engineer -- electronics design and manufacturing
  • Hon Ching Wong, research engineer -- flight s/w
Graduate students (see also our PhD projects page):
  • Sharon Aol -- guest from Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Uganda (winter 2016-2017)
  • Ilka Engelhardt -- plasma and dust around icy moons and comets (Cassini/Rosetta)
  • Elin Eriksson -- energy conversion in space plasma (MMS, Cluster)
  • Fredrik Leffe Johansson -- electrostatic probes in space (Rosetta and other)
  • Andreas Johlander -- particle energization at shocks (MMS, Cluster)
  • Cecilia Norgren -- reconnection studies (Cluster, MMS)
  • Elias Odelstad -- cometary plasma environment (Rosetta)
  • Oleg Shebanits -- pre-biotic conditions at Titan (Cassini)
Project students (see also our student projects page):

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last modified on Tuesday, 25-Apr-2017 09:31:45 CEST
last modified on Tuesday, 25-Apr-2017 09:31:45 CEST