IRF Logo

IRF Uppsala
RPF programme
IRF-U Staff
PhD studies
Solar Orbiter
Swedish Institute of Space Physics (59°50.272′N, 17°38.786′E)
IRF-U Space Plasma Physics
[flamma stolt mot dunkla skyar] På svenska, tack

Welcome to the research programme

Space Plasma Physics


Publications and Presentations


Other resources

NEWS -- see also our page in Swedish

19 December 2019: Konrad Steinvall successfully defended his licentiate thesis Multi-spacecraft Studies of Electron Holes in Space Plasmas. External examiner was Dr. Pierre Henri, Université d'Orléans. Some of his results were published by Physical Review Letters the day before, December 18!

18 December 2019: Fredrik Leffe Johansson successfully defended his licentiate thesis Observations of plasma and dust around comet 67P by Rosetta. External examiner was Dr. Hermann Böhnhardt, Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, Göttingen.

19 June 2019: Today, ESA decided to fly the Comet Interceptor mission! This is a very exciting space adventure to a target that is not even discovered yet, and we are delighted to continue of our comet studies with Rosetta in this way. Launch is in 2028.

27 Feb 2019: Shocks are found everywhere in the universe, and is space around Earth we have unique possibilities to study them in detail using facilities such as our instruments on ESA's Cluster satellites. In the paper "Direct evidence of nonstationary collisionless shocks in space plasmas" today published by Science Advances, Andrew Dimmock and co-authors demonstrate the crucial role of small scale structures inside the gigantic shocks. It also shows that after almost 19 years in space, our instruments on Cluster are still capable of delivering data allowing great science. Read more in our and ESA's press releases.

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 are responsible for or have significant contribution to the following instruments in space:
  • 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. Launched in October 2018 for arrival at Mercury 2026. More on Bepi and MEFISTO at KTH.
  • 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
  • Solar Orbiter -- ESAs mission to investigate the Sun at close distance, for launch in 2020. 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:
  • Cassini -- launched by NASA in 1997, explored the environment of Saturn 2004-2017, with our Langmuir probe onboard.
  • 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 -- PI Cluster EFW
  • David Andrews, PhD -- scientist (Cassini, Mars)
  • Jan Bergman, PhD -- scientist, JUICE RPWI project manager
  • Stephan Buchert, PhD -- scientist (Swarm)
  • Giulia Cozzani, PhD -- post doc (MMS)
  • Andrew Dimmock, PhD -- scientist (space weather)
  • Andrey Divin, PhD -- guest scientist (simulations)
  • Niklas Edberg, PhD -- scientist (Cassini, Rosetta)
  • Anders Eriksson, PhD -- scientist (Rosetta, Cluster)
  • Daniel Graham, PhD -- scientist (Cluster, MMS)
  • Yuri Khotyaintsev, PhD, docent -- head of research programme
  • Michiko Morooka, PhD -- scientist (Cassini)
  • Chinmaya Nayak, PhD -- postdoc (Swarm)
  • Erik Vigren, PhD, docent -- 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:
  • 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
  • Erik Johansson, PhD, research engineer -- Cassini and Rosetta data handling
  • Jan Karlsson, programmer -- data archiving and computer system manager
  • Thomas Nilsson, research engineer -- Swarm and MMS data handling
  • Dan Ohlsson, research engineer -- system engineer
  • Daniel Pelikan, PhD, research engineer -- flight s/w
  • Walter Puccio, senior research engineer -- electronics
  • Farid Shiva, engineer -- electronics design and manufacturing
Graduate students (see also our PhD projects page):
  • Joshua Dreyer -- Saturn's ionosphere (Cassini)
  • Fredrik Leffe Johansson -- electrostatic probes in space (Rosetta and other)
  • Ahmad Lalti -- collisionless shocks (MMS)
  • Chengming Liu -- guest PhD student from Beihang University, China (MMS)
  • Louis Richard -- turbulence and plasma jet fronts (MMS)
  • Konrad Steinvall -- magnetic reconnection in space plasmas (MMS)
  • Katerina Stergiopoulou -- Mars' ionosphere (Maven)
Project students (see also our student projects page):

[flamma stolt mot dunkla skyar]På svenska, tack
last modified on Wednesday, 15-Jan-2020 13:07:51 CET
last modified on Wednesday, 15-Jan-2020 13:07:51 CET