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Ardra Kozhikottuparambil Ramachandran

Pronouns: She/Her

Position: 1st year PhD student

Supervisor: Dr. Ravindra Desai

Funding: Chancellor's International Scholarship

Teaching: Senior Teaching Assistant


BSc Physics, University of Calicut (2020)

MSc Physics, National Institute of Technology Tiruchirappalli (2022)

Project: X-ray imaging of the Earth’s magnetosphere

The earth’s protective magnetosphere is strongly influenced by varying solar activity. The dynamic exchange of energy and momentum through the coupled solar wind-magnetosphere-ionosphere system can lead to geomagnetic storms that disrupt the
space/ground-based technologies that our society increasingly relies upon. It is therefore important to fully understand the mechanisms of energy transfer to forecast and mitigate the effects of space weather. This is however not easy to achieve as much of what we know about the magnetosphere has been gained from isolated in-situ measurements by single/multiple spacecraft. The proposition of using X-rays to “image” the global magnetosphere came recently when it was found that X-rays are generated when highly charged heavy ions from the solar wind collide and charge exchange with the Earth’s hydrogen exosphere. This led to the SMILE (Solar wind Magnetosphere Ionosphere Link Explorer) mission, which will directly image the global magnetosphere for the first-time using X-rays. This presents an unprecedented opportunity to fully quantify the dynamics of the coupled solar wind-magnetosphere system and lay the foundations for improved space weather forecasting capabilities.

Contact details:

Centre for Fusion Space and Astrophysics, Department of Physics, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK


Office: PS1.51, Physical Sciences Building

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