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Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics

Fran Bagenal

Photo credit:      Pamela Davis

Assistant Director for Planetary Sciences            Research Scientist
Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics
University of Colorado
Boulder, Colorado 80303
email: bagenal”at”

Curriculum Vitae

CV 1-page3-page, Full,  IMDB profile,  Wikipedia


Dr Fran Bagenal was born and grew up in England. She studied Physics and Geophysics at the University of Lancaster. In 1976, inspired by NASA’s missions to Mars and the prospect of the Voyager mission, she moved to the US for graduate study at MIT. Her 1981 PhD thesis involved analysis of data from the Voyager Plasma Science experiment in Jupiter’s giant magnetosphere. She spent 1982-1987 as a post-doctoral researcher in space physics at Imperial College, London. Voyager flybys of Uranus and Neptune brought her back to the US and she joined the faculty at the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1989. She is professor of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences and Research Scientist at the Laboratory of Atmospheric and Space Physics. In 2015 she stopped teaching in order to have time to focus on Pluto and Jupiter.

In addition to the Voyager mission, Dr Bagenal has been on the science teams of the Galileo mission to Jupiter and the Deep Space 1 mission to Comet Borrelly. She edited Jupiter: Planet, Satellites and Magnetosphere (Cambridge University Press, 2004). She heads the plasma teams on the first two New Frontiers missions: the New Horizons mission that – after a 9.5-year flight – flew past Pluto on July 14, 2015 and Juno that went into orbit over the poles of Jupiter in 2016.

For the past 20 years or so Fran Bagenal has been involved in studies of the demographics of the space science workforce, including:  Stemming the Leak – what’s been happening in physics undergraduate education the past 20 years? (April 2018); Survey of Planetary Science in the US (2011 and 2020); Enhancing demographics and career pathways of the space physics workforce in the US (2023). She co-chaired a National Academy of Sciences study on Advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility in the Leadership of Competed Space Missions (2022).



Women In Science


Demographics: Physics, Space Physics, Astronomy – at LASP Dec 2018, at APS 16 Sept 2019 (video, slides)


CSWA – Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy of the American Astronomical Association

Women In Astronomy II
– Conference to discuss the current status of women in astronomy, understand
their work environment and recommend future actions that will improve the environment
for all astronomers. To be held at Caltech, Pasadena, CA June 27-28th, 2003.

Applying to Grad School– (.pdf) article in
Jan. 2005 issue of STATUS

When to say Yes, How to say no – advice on how much service work to take on (March 2014)

This page created an maintained by Fran Bagenal: bagenal”at”