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Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics

Meet the MAVENites

The Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission has been orbiting Mars since 2014, but it isn’t doing all its work alone. Behind the mission are the hard working people that help the spacecraft perform critical maneuvers, plan science observations, and ultimately help us understand more about the Red Planet. Get to know some of these Martians in our new Meet the MAVENites features.

Meet Dale Theiling:
Dale is the Science Operations for the MAVEN mission to Mars. He oversees the development and execution of science observations across all of the spacecraft’s instruments. Joining the MAVEN team in 2011, Dale also works closely with the IUVS instrument to develop and build observations.
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Meet Sky Shaver:
Sky is a PhD student at the University of Colorado Boulder, conducting research using MAVEN data. She is currently investigating the Martian ionosphere and magnetosphere, using data from the Langmuir Probe and Waves and Magnetometer instruments. This can help with our understanding of the role plasma structures play in the loss of the Martian atmosphere.
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Meet Mehdi Benna:
Mehdi is a planetary scientist and the instrument lead for the Neutral Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer (NGIMS) aboard MAVEN. His research focuses on aeronomy, plasma physics, and planetary magnetosphere dynamics. When he isn’t studying the Red Planet, Mehdi likes to fly airplanes for fun.
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Meet Shaosui Xu:
Shaosui is a science team member of the MAVEN mission and studies the interaction of the solar wind with Earth and planetary space environments. Joining the MAVEN team in 2016, Shaosui has been working on analyzing MAVEN data to study the Mars plasma environment.
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Meet Philip Chamberlin:
Phil is a research scientist at the Laboratory of Atmospheric and Space Physics in Boulder, CO. His research specifically focuses on solar flares and their impact on planetary atmospheres. On MAVEN, he helped on the initial optical design for the EUVM instrument, and continues to work on data analysis and calibration of this instrument. His expertise led him to being the Solar Flare Space Weather specialist for MAVEN, informing the team when large solar flares occur that impact Mars. 

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Meet Murti Nauth:
Murti is a PhD candidate at University of California Berkeley studying Mars’ magnetotail, a magnetic field that is flowing behind the planet, using data from the MAVEN instrument SWEA! This research can help scientists learn more on how Mars, and other planets with similar magnetotails, interact with the Sun.
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