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UEA postgrad hired by Nasa to do research on exoplanets and alien life

A high-flying UEA postgraduate student as been hired to work at Nasa to investigate whether alien life may exist on other planets.

Andrew Rushby first made headlines when he successfully proved that the Earth will be habitable for at least another 1.75 billion years in an article published in the journal Astrobiology. Following his findings, which he made alongside Mark Claire, Hugh Osborne and Andrew Watson back in 2013, he has now been called upon to work for two years at Nasa’s Ames Research Centre in the Northern area of California. During his tenure, the UEA postgraduate is expected to study thousands of exoplanets discovered by the Kepler space telescope. His research will focus on investigating the surface environments of these newly discovered ‘Earth-like’ planets and how they evolve over time.

Rushby, who studied at UEA’s Centre for Ocean and Atmospheric Science in the School of Environmental Sciences said: “This is absolutely my dream job!

“I’m incredibly excited and grateful to have been awarded this prestigious fellowship to continue to carry out the work I love. This is a rapidly developing field which promises to provide wonderful and potentially game- changing discoveries regarding other planets in our galaxy over the coming years”.

Rushby’s will be working for the newly- formed Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) which is an association of American universities and research institutes that carry out research with Nasa on exoplanet science.

On top of carrying out his own research on how planets’ surfaces evolve, Rushby has also been given the job of helping to manage the NExSS network and how they communicate new findings to the public.

“I’ve always been as passionate about the outreach side of research as the research itself, so the post is a great fit for me”, he added.

06/10/2015

About Author

danfalvey Dan Falvey is an undergraduate politics student about to start his second year at UEA. Being an avid tea drinker means that he has the most essential skill needed to be a successful journalist. Outside of his interests in writing and politics, Dan. is also a regular theatre-goer, film geek and most importantly, a supporter of the mighty MK Dons.



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