Announcement of Opportunity: Aurora Science 2020

Aiming to support planetary exploration science to enhance the UK’s capabilities and cross-disciplinary approach.


Aurora Science: Announcement of Opportunity

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The UK Space Agency is making funding available for Aurora science.

The purpose of this AO is to support science and operations associated with Martian planetary exploration and to enhance the UK’s capabilities and cross-disciplinary approach to planetary science. The ExoMars programme is already underway, with an orbiter already at Mars.

A key goal of the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) is to detect and characterise trace gases in the Martian atmosphere and gain a better understanding of methane and other atmospheric gases that are present in small concentrations but could be evidence for possible biological or geological activity. The ExoMars Rosalind Franklin rover, now due for launch in 2022, will search Mars for signs of biosignatures from past life preserved within the subsurface via drilling up to 2 metres into the surface.

This scheme is open to academics and individual scientists from the UK or overseas, working at UK Research Organisations, for proposals to fund:

  • Fellowships to develop promising early career researchers
  • Post Doctorate Research Assistants
  • Support for academics
  • Studentships.

Applications are particularly welcome in the following areas:

  • InSight and TGO data exploitation
  • Work that underpins the analysis of ExoMars data, including modelling/theory
  • Support activities in preparation for Mars Sample Return.
Published 20 March 2020