Principal Investigators

Jean-Loup Bertaux

Jean-Loup Bertaux
Jean-Loup Bertaux

Jean-Loup Bertaux is from the Service d'Aeronomie du CNRS at Verrières-le-Buisson in France. With his SPICAM instrument on Mars Express, he hopes to build up measurements of ozone and water vapour over the surface of the planet for different seasons.

You can read about Jean-Pierre at Looking into our future: An interview with Jean-Loup Bertaux

Jean-Pierre Bibring

Jean-Pierre Bibring
Jean-Pierre Bibring

Jean-Pierre Bibring is very conscious of how human activity on Earth can affect our environment and put human life at risk, and that space research can have a positive impact on our society. His OMEGA experiment on Mars Express will help answer basic questions about Mars, which could help us understand how our planet evolves too.

You can read about Jean-Pierre at Bringing space science back to Earth: An interview with Jean-Pierre Bibring

Vittorio Formisano

Vittorio Formisano
Vittorio Formisano

Seven years ago, Vittorio Formisano had the worst day of his professional life. A malfunctioning rocket stage sent Russian planetary probe Mars '96 tumbling back down to Earth – and along with it an instrument that he and his team had worked on for almost a decade.

You can read about Vittorio at If at first you don't succeed...: An interview with Vittorio Formisano

Rickard Lundin

Rickard Lundin
Rickard Lundin

In 1988, the Russian Phobos 2 made some measurements of the Martian atmosphere before contact was lost after just two months. But these measurements, according to Rickard Lundin, hold the key to the success of ASPERA on Mars Express. ASPERA will study how the 'solar wind' interacts with the Martian atmosphere and show how water vapour and other gases could have escaped from Mars.

You can read about Rickard at Welcome back to Mars: An interview with Rickard Lundin

Gerhard Neukum

Gerhard Neukum
Gerhard Neukum

There are only a few people who can say that they originated the idea to send a European spacecraft to Mars. However, Gerhard Neukum has a good case to make this claim. In 1996, having watched his pioneering camera fall into the Pacific Ocean on board Russia's ill-fated Mars ’96 mission, he needed to find a spacecraft that could take his instruments to Mars.

You can read about Gerhard at Man with a plan: An interview with Gerhard Neukum

Martin Pätzold

Martin Pätzold
Martin Pätzold

At 43 years old, Martin Pätzold is the youngest scientist in charge of an instrument on Mars Express. Working alongside some of the professors who first inspired him as a student, Martin is looking forward to his experiment measuring gravity on Mars with unprecedented accuracy.

You can read about Martin at Up where he belongs: An interview with Martin Pätzold

Giovanni Picardi

Giovanni Picardi
Giovanni Picardi

Giovanni Picardi's MARSIS is a big instrument with a big job to do. Standing for ‘Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionospheric Sounding’, it will be the longest structure ever flown in Martian orbit.

You can read about Giovanni at What lies beneath...: An interview with Giovanni Picardi

Colin Pillinger

Colin Pillinger
Colin Pillinger

Colin Pillinger, Principal Investigator for Beagle 2, was interviewed before the events of 25 December 2003. He talked about his work over the last six years to get Beagle 2 to that point – then just days away from its destination.

You can read about Colin at The pleasure principle: An interview with Colin Pillinger

Last update: 10 October 2005

Copyright 2000 - 2014 © European Space Agency. All rights reserved.