Guildford Astronomical Society

Prof. Graziella Branduardi-Raymont

Prof. Graziella Branduardi-Raymont - Credit: permission from Graziella Branduardi-RaymontProf. Graziella Branduardi-Raymont
Credit: permission from Graziella Branduardi-Raymont

Graziella has been fascinated by astronomy and space research since she was a teenager.
After a degree in Physics at the University of Milano, Italy, and a PhD in X-ray Astronomy at University College London (UCL), she worked at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA, and then returned to UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory where she is based and is Professor of Space Astronomy.
Graziella has participated in major X-ray observatory missions over many years: her scientific interests span X-ray emission from distant active galaxies, stars and planets.
She is Co-Investigator for the Reflection Grating Spectrometer (RGS) operating on board ESA’s XMM-Newton X-ray observatory since 1999, having also been project manager for the MSSL hardware contribution to the RGS.
She is now co-leader of the ESA-Chinese Academy of Sciences SMILE mission, which is under development and due for launch in 2023.
DateTalk at GAS meeting
7 Mar 2019SMILE: A novel and global way to explore solar-terrestrial relationships

For those of you who have not heard yet, here is some news: Yesterday the SMILE mission was 'adopted' into the ESA Cosmic Vision 2015-2025 Programme.
This is a very important step in the development of a space mission:
it means SMILE has received the green light for implementation, and UKSA will release funds to support the UK institutes involved in the mission, up to launch (expected end 2023).
SMILE (Solar wind Magnetosphere Ionosphere Link Explorer) is a joint venture by ESA and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, with two Mission Co-PIs, Prof. Chi Wang on the Chinese side and Graziella Branduardi Raymont on the European side.
SMILE will investigate the impact of the solar wind on the Earth's magnetic environment in a very novel way, by taking X-ray images of the dayside magnetosheath and cusp regions (Soft X-ray Imager, or SXI), and will link the processes taking place there with those leading to the auroral displays in the polar regions (monitored by the UV Imager, UVI).
A plasma package (Light Ion Analyser, LIA, and the MAGnetometer) will simultaneously monitor conditions in the solar wind or the magnetosheath. All of this will take place from a very highly elliptical polar orbit, taking the spacecraft out to 20 Earth radii.
In terms of hardware, we at MSSL are contributing to the SXI by providing the Front End Electronics, and to LIA, by supporting the instrument design and carrying out calibrations of the analysers.

For more information about SMILE
The News item mentioned above:- ESA News
Graziella's work on Jupiter's Aurorae can be found
AMM-Newton A & A article
X-ray emission from Jupiter's aurorae
And from one of Graziella's students
Jupiter’s northern and southern X-ray auroras
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