Peter Gallagher, a Trinity Astrophysics Professor, has been elected as the Advisor to the Director of Science at the European Space Agency (ESA). Along with eleven other members of the Space Science Advisory Committee (SSAC), Professor Gallagher will execute a number of missions under the ESA “Cosmic Vision 2015-2025” plan.
The agenda of the programme includes topics that range from the fundamental laws of physics that govern the universe to the origin of the universe and the conditions necessary for life to evolve on a planet. Gallagher will be interpreting the needs of the space scientific community in terms of experimentation and the exploitation of data. ESA will be investing €5 billion over the coming decade toward space exploration.
The Space Science Advisory Committee give direction to scientists who wish to access space as part of research as well as constructing and updating medium to long term space policy in Europe. The group are also charged with prioritising future space missions according to the needs and research of scientists, as well as new discoveries.