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Spacecraft charging of CubeSats and the impact of space weather events

Project Description

The project is mainly focused on spacecraft charging study of spacecraft in general and spacecraft in the CubeSat form factor in LEO in particular. The project will develop a model to enable estimations of spacecraft potential and then use the data from the INMS instrument on the CIRCE mission to verify the model. The project would also involve hands on work with the INMS, involvement with all aspects of INMS ground segment and in-flight operations, data analysis of in-fight data and impact of space weather events.

Desired Knowledge and Skills

• Undergraduate or Masters in Physics.
• Strong computational skills.
• Strong interest in hands-on hardware


Applications submitted by 31st January 2020 will be given full consideration. We will continue accepting applications until all places are filled. After we receive your application, we will select candidates for interviews. If you are selected, you will be invited for an interview at MSSL. You will have the opportunity to see the laboratory, students' flats and talk to current students. The studentships are for the advertised projects only. In your application, please specify which project you want to apply for.

To apply, please visit the Online Application page, select department of "Space & Climate Physics" and programme type of "Postgraduate Research". After pushing "Search Now" button, select "RRDSPSSING01: Research Degree: Space and Climate Physics" for Full-time or Part-time mode.
Our Online Applications page can be found here:

Entry requirements

An upper second-class Bachelor’s degree, or a second-class Bachelor’s degree together with a Master's degree from a UK university in a relevant subject, or an equivalent overseas qualification.

Students from the UK or those from the EU who meet the residency requirements (3 years' full-time residency in the UK) are potentially eligible for a Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) studentship.

Funding Notes

These pay UK/EU tuition fees and a maintenance allowance for 3.5 years (subject to the PhD upgrade review).

EU students who do not meet eligibility requirements still qualify for the UK/EU fees rate, but not the STFC maintenance allowance.

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