MSSL Planetary Science News

Dr. Adam Masters wins the Robert Boyd Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement

20 November 2011

Dr. Adam Masters giving his lecture

Dr. Adam Masters from the Planetary Science group has won this year’s Robert Boyd Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement.

Over the past two years Dr. Masters has investigated how the solar wind interacts with Saturn’s magnetosphere, completing a number of studies in this area. He has studied the properties and structure of Saturn’s low-latitude boundary layer – a boundary inside the magnetosphere near the equator which is important in the transfer of mass and energy from the solar wind into the magnetosphere. He has found evidence of Kelvin-Helmholtz waves (like waves on the sea) on Saturn’s magnetopause, which are one way for particles in the solar wind to enter the magnetosphere. He has also studied dynamics inside the magnetosphere, finding evidence for very rapid flows of particles due to magnetic reconnection inside the magnetosphere.

Each year awards are presented to members of MSSL that have made outstanding contributions to science (with separate awards for postdoctoral researchers and students), public engagement and technology. The Planetary Science group has been successful in the past in these awards. Group members have won the Robert Boyd Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement and the Elizabeth Puchnarewicz Award for Outstanding Contribution to Public Outreach.

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