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General News/UKSP Business:


Meetings/Workshops/Summer Schools:


General News/UKSP Business:

Policy Internships for STFC-funded PhD Students

from Sian Giles-Titcombe [June 19, 2019]

STFC participates in the Research Councils Policy Internships scheme, a programme in which STFC-funded PhD students are given the opportunity to spend three months working in Parliament or Government. Opportunities are available with the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) or the Government Office for Science (GO-Science).

Applications for the 2019/20 scheme are now open.
The scheme presents a unique opportunity for PhD students to gain an insight into the political process. Fellows learn how policy is developed, interact with policy makers and develop the skills needed to communicate effectively with non-academic audiences.

• POST is an independent office of the Houses of Parliament whose role is to provide clear, expert, impartial advice on science to MPs and Peers. Its goal is to keep them up to date on current scientific issues and allow them to make informed decisions. Fellows either work on a ‘POST Note’ or research project, or provide specialist advice to a Parliamentary Select Committee or the House of Commons Library.

• GO-Science looks to ensure that Government policies and decisions are informed by the best scientific evidence and strategic long-term thinking. Placements are likely to involve undertaking research, drafting briefing notes and background papers, and organising workshops and meetings. They will offer opportunities to work with a number of different teams and across a wide range of science and technology policy topics in GO-Science.
Successful applicants will receive a three-month extension to their STFC PhD status as well as their stipend. Interns based at non-London institutions will receive an additional sum to cover the costs of relocating to London for three months.

Applications for 2019/20 Internships will close on Monday 12 August 2019. More details about the hosting partners and the application form can be found on the UKRI site.
Further information:

• STFC Policy Internships (includes past case studies)
• Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
• Government Office for Science


New UKSP Nugget #101

from Iain Hannah [June 12, 2019]

101. Mapping the magnetic field of solar coronal loops
by David Kuridze (Aberystwyth), Mihalis Mathioudakis (QUB) and Huw Morgan (Aberystwyth).

Coronal spectropolarimetric measurements point the way for the next generation of ground-based solar telescope.


UKSP Nuggets are published on a monthly basis highlighting solar physics research led from the UK.

Iain Hannah and Lyndsay Fletcher

Meetings/Workshops/Summer Schools:

AGU 2019 Fall Meeting – Session SH010 Innovative approaches in solar flare forecasting. San Francisco, CA, 9-13 December 2019

from robertus erdelyi [June 25, 2019]

You are cordially invited to participate and submit an abstract to Session SH010 Innovative approaches in solar flare forecasting of the AGU 2019 Fall Meeting held on 9-13 December 2019 in San Francisco, CA.

Contributions on any aspects about solar flare forecasting or solar flares are welcome. For submission to this session please follow:

Submission Opens: 12 June 2019
Submission Closes: 31 July 2019

Session Description:

Solar flares are one of the major sources of space weather disturbances. The monitoring and forecasting of solar flares (and CME) are crucial to reduce space weather risks for our modern society on the Earth as well as for human exploration in space. In recent years, solar observations have made great progress thanks to the very high spatial, temporal and spectral resolutions available. Various new approaches for solar flare forecasting have also emerged. Prominent progresses include the emergence of artificial intelligence methods in parallel to the advanced numerical modelling approaches in solar physics. In this session, we invite contributions on any kinds of innovative approaches relevant for solar flare forecasting, which include but are not limited to the empirical, statistical, big-data, artificial intelligence, physical measures, and numerical modelling methodologies. The scope of discussions covers from preliminary ideas, experimental techniques to mature operational schemes advancing solar flare forecasting. Other related topics about solar flares are also welcome.

Session Conveners:
Han He, NAOC (
Robertus Erdelyi, SP2RC, U of Sheffield (

AGU 2019 SH001 Acceleration and Transport Processes of Energetic Electrons in Solar Flares and Interplanetary Space – abstract submission now open.

from Natasha Jeffrey [June 24, 2019]

The abstract submission for the AGU Fall Meeting 2019 session SH001 — Acceleration and Transport Processes of Energetic Electrons in Solar Flares and Interplanetary Space is now open.

We welcome contributions from a broad range of topics that aim to address common challenges involved in understanding particle acceleration and transport at the Sun and in the heliosphere, from observations, theory and modelling.

Meeting date: AGU Fall Meeting 9-13 December 2019, San Francisco, CA.

Session organisers: Frederic Effenberger (Helmholtz Center, Potsdam), Sophie Musset (UMN), Nina Dresing (Kiel) & Natasha Jeffrey (U. of Glasgow).


Session abstract:
The relation between energetic particle populations accelerated at the Sun, as seen in radiative signatures, and particles measured in-situ, is a fundamental subject in Heliophysics. Observations during the RHESSI era demonstrated the still poorly understood existence of a connection between solar flare signatures of accelerated electrons at the Sun and the corresponding solar energetic particles detected at 1AU. A key question is thus: Can these distinctly observed electron populations originate from the same flare-acceleration region? Different acceleration and transport processes in the solar atmosphere and in interplanetary space can contribute to the observed non-thermal temporal, spatial, and spectral particle signatures. We encourage contributions from observational, theoretical and simulation studies addressing this topic. Cross-community, joined efforts hold the potential to lead to a greater understanding of the important physical processes involved in electron acceleration and will enable new approaches to interpret the near-Sun observations from Parker Solar Probe and Solar Orbiter.

Registration Open: STFC Advanced Summer School in Solar System Plasmas (2019)

from Richard Morton [June 15, 2019]

STFC Advanced Summer School in Solar System Plasmas (2019)

Department of Physics, Lancaster University

Sunday 1st September – Friday 6th September 2019


Registration is now open.


The 2019 STFC-funded Advanced Summer School will be hosted by the Space and Planetary Physics Group in the Department of Physics at Lancaster University. The programme consists of core lectures in Space Plasma Physics and Solar Physics alongside more specialised topics and is aimed at second- and third-year PhD students. The advanced summer school is designed to consolidate understanding gained in the STFC Introductory Summer School, and to place research in a broader thematic context, as well as providing an opportunity for PhD students to network with their peers and share experiences. Full funding will be available for up to 27 STFC-supported and self-funded PhD students; priority is given to STFC-supported students and free self-funded places are only confirmed after the close of registration. Non-STFC-funded students and PDRAs are welcome to attend subject to a registration fee.


A link to the registration page, and further details, are available on the summer school website ( and please also feel free to connect with the summer school Facebook event ( In the meantime, please feel free to email us at if you have any questions. Registration closes on Friday 9 August 2019.


We look forward to welcoming you to Lancaster in September.

Local Organising Committee: Chris Arridge, Licia Ray, Maria Walach, Joe Kinrade

SHINE Session #18 – Data Analysis Tools and Methods for Observations of the Solar Corona

from Nathalia Alzate [June 13, 2019]

In preparation of Parker Solar Probe (PSP), Solar Orbiter (SO) and the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (DKIST), it is important to discuss the plethora of analysis tools and processing techniques currently available. The current applicability of these techniques to EUV and coronagraph data (e.g. SDO/AIA, SOHO/LASCO) will prove to be invaluable in interpreting measurements from PSP, SO and DKIST. It is therefore essential to understand these techniques and set the stage for the development of new ones.

The main purpose of this session is to foster discussions between researchers focused on developing solar data analysis and processing tools (including machine learning methods) and the solar wind/heliosphere community.

Please see a full description of our session at

We encourage speakers and participants to discuss the different types of information that can be gained from applying various techniques to solar data.

Organizers: Nathalia Alzate (NASA GSFC), Dan Seaton (NOAA) and Huw Morgan (Aberystwyth University)

Invited Scene-Setting Speakers: Craig DeForest (SwRI) and Barbara Thompson (NASA GSFC)

Late registration begins: June 2, 2019
Abstract deadline: June 15, 2019


JOB OPENING: PhD Student Position in the Space Physics Group at the Department of Physics, University of Helsinki, Finland

from Lucile Turc [June 25, 2019]

The Space Physics Group of the University of Helsinki is a leading European space physics group specialised both in observations and modelling of space plasmas. We develop in particular the novel global magnetospheric hybrid-Vlasov simulation Vlasiator and have a strong focus on solar eruptions combining observations and models.

We are now opening a doctoral student position. The research of the PhD student will focus on the Kelvin-Helmholtz instability at the Earth’s magnetopause, and on the associated wave activity inside the magnetosphere.
Prior knowledge of space plasma physics and numerical simulations is considered an advantage. Other useful skills include: Python, C/C++, space physics-related data analysis

We offer a position in a dynamic and international research group, with a possibility to network and to develop as a researcher. The expected start date for the position is 1st January 2020. Applications are open until 30th August 2019.

For more information, please visit:

For specifics about the position, contact Lucile Turc (lucile.turc ‘at’ Interested candidates should send their informal application, a CV, a transcript of their university grades, and a maximum of three names to act as references to the same address (lucile.turc ‘at’

Postdoctoral Research Assistant in Magnetohydrodynamics/Solar Physics at the University of Dundee

from David Pontin [June 15, 2019]

Applications are invited for a three-year postdoctoral research position in the area of Solar Magnetohydrodynamics (MHD). The position is available to work on a project within an STFC consolidated grant. The project aims to assess the contribution of interchange reconnection to accelerating and structuring slow solar wind. This will involve analysis of the 3D magnetic field topology of the Sun’s corona and designing and performing large-scale MHD simulations of interchange reconnection processes.

The project will be carried out in the MHD group at the University of Dundee, and in collaboration with colleagues at Durham University and NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Further details about our group in Dundee can be found here:

The ideal candidate will have a good knowledge of MHD and solar physics and will have experience of computational MHD/hydrodynamics. Experience in mathematical modelling of plasmas or fluids and/or solar physics observations would also be beneficial. Applicants must hold a PhD in solar physics, plasma physics or applied mathematics by the start of the project.

The position is available for three years, with earliest start date being August 1st 2019. The starting salary will be on Grade 7 of the UK Universities’ pay scale, around GBP 32-35K, depending on experience.

For further details, or to make an application, please go to

Closing date: 8th July 2019. Informal enquiries can be directed to Prof David Pontin ( or Prof Gunnar Hornig (