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Groundbreaking discovery could signal life on Venus

Scientists from across the globe, including Dr Helen Fraser of The Open University, have detected a rare gas – phosphine – in the clouds of Venus. The landmark discovery could point to extra-terrestrial ‘aerial’ life on the planet.

14th September 2020

Applications for Ernest Rutherford Fellowship within SPS

The Science and Technology Facilities Council offer a number of Fellowships each year to early-career researchers working in research that aligns with priority areas within SPS. This includes astronomy, planetary science, and space instrumentation. Funding is available for 5 years including applicant's salary, with limited research expenses and travel funding.

6th July 2020
Mark A Garlick / markgarlick.com ;  Institut d’astrophysique de Paris

International scientists discover a pair of dancing planets

An international team of scientists, including Dr Ulrich Kolb and Professor Carole Haswell of The School of Physical Sciences at The Open University (OU), have discovered two, giant planets interacting near each other, in a gravitational dance. The planets, detected by the Wide Area Search for Planets (WASP) project, feel each other’s gravity and, as a result, speed up and slow down slightly as the inner, faster-orbiting planet overtakes on the inside. The first planet, WASP-148b, passes in fron

2nd July 2020

ESA TV for Asteroid Day

 

30th June 2020

Super-Earth planets detected orbiting nearby star

A system of super-Earth planets – possibly rocky worlds, but larger than Earth – has been detected orbiting the nearby star Gliese 887.

An international team of astronomers, including Professor Carole Haswell and Dr John Barnes of The Open University, made the discovery as part of Red Dots, a project to detect terrestrial planets close to the Sun.

26th June 2020

Newly detected green light observed around Mars

OU scientists, as part of an international team, have identified a never-before-seen, green glow surrounding Mars with the same characteristics as the Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights.

Using the NOMAD-UVIS instrument onboard the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO), a joint space mission between the European Space Agency (ESA) and Roscosmos, scientists were able to detect an atmospheric green glow of oxygen surrounding the red planet.

16th June 2020

BAFTA nomination for '8 Days: To the Moon and Back'

We are congratulating Mahesh Anand, Professor of Planetary Science and Exploration on being shortlisted for a BAFTA on the television awards this year for “8 Days: To the Moon and Back”. This programme, for which Mahesh was lead academic, has been shortlisted in the category Specialist Factual.

8th June 2020

SPS-led research selected as highlight from 10 years at LOFAR telescope

The International LOFAR (Low Frequency Array) Telescope is celebrating its 10th anniversary on 12th June, and work, published last year, led by Dr Beatriz Mingo of The School of Physical Sciences, has been selected as one of ten science highlights from LOFAR's first decade. Beatriz works closely with

8th June 2020

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