UofL PhD Student wins NASA Kentucky Space Grant Graduate Fellowship

PhD student Camella Nasr in the A&s;S Department of Physics &s; Astronomy has won a 2020 NASA Kentucky Space Grant Graduate Fellowship, in support of her research on how the jet streams on Mars change with season. This is a new team collaboration between UofL and NASA. The UofL team members are Ms. Nasr and her UofL co-advisors, Profs. T.E. Dowling (Physics &s; Astronomy) and M.E. Bradley (Mathematics), and the NASA team member is Dr. Jeffrey Hollingsworth of the Mars Climate Modeling Group at the NASA Ames Research Center. The team is using global spacecraft data for Mars that cover 9 Mars years (17 Earth years), and they have shown that the jet streams on Mars are much faster than on Earth, with the northern winter polar jet (shown for Mars Year 26) actually becoming supersonic. This means the Mach number on Mars exceeds 1.0, which can be compared to Earth’s fastest jet streams, which do not exceed 0.3. This team collaboration is part of a larger effort by NASA and its global partners to ensure the safety of boots-on-the-ground Mars astronauts and their scientific equipment (including balloons and drones)