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OU awarded £2.5 million to further success in planetary sciences

The Open University (OU) has received £2.5 million from the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) to fund research in planetary sciences, building on the university’s 50 years in space science.

Scientists from the School of Physical Sciences have been awarded the grant to further their research in the origin and evolution of the Solar System, and to answer the age-old question: is there life beyond the Earth?

30th March 2020

Dr Geraint Morgan working on a new project for greener satellite propulsion

Dr Geraint (Taff) Morgan from the School of Physical Sciences is involved in a SPRINT funding project to to utilise patented valve technology in development of novel water-based propulsion system.

30th March 2020

I'm A Scientist Get Me Out of Here

Two of our PhD students took part in the most recent ‘I’m a Scientist Get me Out of Here’ competition, which connects real students with real scientists doing real science. Lori-Ann Foley and Sam Faircloth, who are both Planetary and Space Science students with the School of Physical Sciences, joined the ‘I’m a Scientist Space Zone’ to talk in chat rooms to enthusiastic young students across the UK.

27th March 2020

PhD student Hannah Sargeant makes Forbes 30 under 30 list

We want to congratulate School of Physical Sciences final year PhD student Hannah Sargeant for being selected to be on the Forbes 30 under 30 Europe list for Science and Healthcare.

Hannah's research is developing a method to extract water from Moon rocks, a technique she has successfully tested on lunar samples.

19th March 2020

IoP talks cancelled until end of May

The IOP has decided to cancel all Nation, branch, group events and conferences in the UK and Ireland until the end of May as a precaution due to the coronavirus. This means that the talks planned to take place on April 21st and May 12th are now postponed. We are sorry for any disappointment and we will aim to rearrange the lectures for a later date.

16th March 2020

OU student wins prize for study on search for moons around exoplanets

We are delighted to announce that Open University Space Science Postgraduate student, Iain Muirhead, has been selected as the winner of the Paul Lidgett Memorial Prize for his achievements in 'SXP390 – The Science Project Course: Radiation and Matter'. We think Iain has a really inspiring story behind his studies with the Open University and we wanted to share it here.

5th March 2020

The Moon in Scotland

Professor of Planetary Science and Exploration, Mahesh Anand, returns this week from a talk series in Scotland as part of the 'Inspiring People' lectures run by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society. He spoke in Dumfries, Galashiels, Ayr and Helensburgh on 'The Next 50 Years of Lunar Exploration'. Professor Anand also took along a 1.3kg meteorite of the lunar surface with him to wow audiences. This is the largest lunar meteorite in the UK; a very impressive piece of space rock.

2nd March 2020

Hear about the early years of the OU from someone who was there

In January we were delighted to welcome Professor Emeritus of Physics, Russell Stannard, back to the Open University to speak about his personal experiences working at the University since it was founded in 1969 in a rented house in Belgravia, London before making a move to the new city of Milton Keynes.

20th February 2020

Physical Sciences Outreach Officer writes new planetarium show narrated by Lupita Nyong'o

We are delighted to announce that our Outreach and Public Engagement Officer, Dr Natalie Starkey, has just completed a year-long project writing the script for the new planetarium space show at the Hayden Planetarium of the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) in New York. Natalie left her scientific research career in 2015 to become a full-time writer and science communicator.

21st January 2020

Announcing the winners of the SPS Outreach and Public Engagement Awards

We are delighted to announce the winners of the first ever School of Physical Sciences Outreach and Public Engagement Awards. The following people were selected for having made a significant contribution to outreach and/or public engagement with research during 2019. Congratulations to all for supporting a wide and varied programme of activities, enthusing and exciting the public about the amazing research we carry out within the School.

16th December 2019