Artist's impression of Earth's magnetosphere showing different plasma regimes. (c) UCL 2011
Artist's impression of Earth's magnetosphere showing different plasma regimes. (c) UCL 2011


UCL's Department of Space and Climate Physics, (Mullard Space Science Laboratory - MSSL), is a world-leading research organisation and is the UK's largest university-based space research group.

MSSL delivers a broad, cutting-edge science programme, underpinned by a strong capability in space science instrumentation, space-domain engineering, space medicine, systems engineering and project management. 

Our scientific research ranges from cosmology and the study of extra-galactic objects, to studies of the Sun, the planets and their moons, the Earth, and humans working and living in space. We also research and develop the next generation of space instrumentation. Our research is supported through UK research councils, the UK Space Agency, European and other grants and contracts.

Lecture theatre at UCL
Lecture theatre at UCL


As a department of UCL, members of staff are actively involved in teaching both undergraduates and post-graduates. Our post-graduate education programme consists of taught courses, leading to an M.Sc., and research degrees, leading to an M.Phil or Ph.D.

Students studying at MSSL become active members of their research groups and wider research communities. Research projects in our taught courses give students the opportunity to be involved in the development of new space hardware and future missions. 

The research undertaken at MSSL drives an active outreach programme. Scientists and engineers are happy to talk about their work and run activities for groups of all ages and interests.

Artist's impression of the ExoMars rover. Image: ESA
Artist's impression of the ExoMars rover. Image: ESA


MSSL has a long heritage of providing high-quality space instrumentation for international space research missions. In our >40 year history we have been involved in more than 35 scientific space missions and over 200 rocket launches.

MSSL develops and tests hardware and software, usually as part of an international consortium. Our engineers work along side scientists to ensure that the instruments we produce optimally address key questions in modern space science. Post-launch support that is linked to pre-flight and flight calibrations enables scientists to understand the responses of the instrument, greatly benefitting the analysis of the data.

Engineers and project support staff make up around half the staff and students at MSSL.

MSSL thermal vacuum and optical test chamber
MSSL thermal vacuum and optical test chamber


As a builder of scientific instruments, MSSL has developed expertise and facilities for manufacturing and testing of space hardware. We make these facilities and expertise available for industrial contracts. 

Through UCL Centre for Systems Engineering (UCLse), we offer a range of industrial training courses in areas including systems engineering, project management, risk management and system design, and conduct consultancy projects for industry in systems engineering and technology management.

Mullard Space Science Laboratory in the snow
Mullard Space Science Laboratory in the snow


UCL was one of the first universities in the world to become involved in making scientific observations in space. Since MSSL was established in 1966, we have participated in more than 35 satellite missions and over 200 rocket experiments.

Our groups of research scientists and development engineers work together to ensure that the instruments we produce are as relevant and competitive as possible. The subsequent data analysis and scientific interpretation of data benefits from the fundamental understanding of the instruments gained from their development and testing.

MSSL and its location have a rich heritage that can be explored further on this site.

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Technician in Flight Test Facilities Group

An exciting opportunity has arisen to recruit a Technician in the Flight Test Facilities Group at the Department of Space and Climate Physics (Mullard Space Science Laboratory), University College London. The group is currently involved in testing hardware for a number of ESA space missions, including Exomars, Solar Orbiter, Euclid and Plato. The successful applicant will, in the first instance, provide support to the Euclid VIS flight hardware test campaign, as well as being responsible for the maintenance and day-to-day running of the Euclid flight test facilities and cleanrooms.  The post is for two years in the first instance and continuation is subject to grant funding. More...

Published: Mar 16, 2018 9:08:36 AM

Senior Mechanical Engineer

We are seeking to employ a Senior Mechanical Engineer. The post holder will act as mechanical engineer for the Visible Instrument on the Euclid mission under development for the ESA Cosmic Vision programme and the PanCam robotic exploration mission. More...

Published: Mar 16, 2018 9:02:00 AM

Mechanical Engineer

An exciting opportunity has arisen for a Mechanical Engineer to the thermal engineering group at MSSL to support the Laboratory’s space science instrumentation programme. The position offered is not a research position. More...

Published: Mar 16, 2018 8:58:03 AM

Dr. Nadine Kalmoni, winner of a 2018 MAPS Dean's Commendation for her PhD work

MSSL student wins Dean's Commendation

Congratulations to Dr. Nadine Kalmoni for being named as one of this year's MAPS Postgraduate Prize Dean's Commendations. More...

Published: Feb 20, 2018 11:49:54 AM

Teaching Fellow/Senior Teaching Fellow in Technology Management

UCL/MSSL is seeking to employ a Teaching Fellow and Senior Teaching Fellow in our Technology Management Group. The Technology Management Group is concerned with the development, management and exploitation of technology within an enterprise context, and carries out research, teaching and consultancy in relevant areas. By applying this knowledge, it also supports projects and activities in the Department of Space and Climate Physics, other UCL departments, associated institutions and partner companies. More...

Published: Feb 13, 2018 3:08:32 PM

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Page last modified on 20 feb 18 11:26