November 2016: More than 3300 planets are known to orbit stars far beyond the solar system, in planetary systems very different to our own. There may well be hundreds of billions of extrasolar planets in the Milky Way alone. These planets include planetary types not found among the eight planets that orbit our Sun, including mini-Neptunes, super-Earths, rogue or nomad planets and hot gas-giant planets. Are we therefore alone in the Universe? To answer this pertinent question, we seek to understand the formation and evolution of our own solar system and the reasons for this rich planetary diversity.
The Centre for Exoplanet Science brings together researchers from different disciplines to find out how planets form in different galactic environments, how their atmospheres evolve, and the relation between the evolutionary history of planets and the emergence of life. We are further interested in the moral, ethical and technical aspects of detecting existent or extinct extra-terrestrial life in distant exosystems, or within our own solar system, and the significance of such a discovery for our societies.
The Centre for Exoplanet Science builds on the rich legacy of the SUPA Astrobiology initiative.
The Centre for Exoplanet Science currently combines research from the School of Physics & Astronomy, the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, and the Department of Philosophy at the University of St Andrews.
We are affiliated with the Centre for Exoplanet Science at the University of Edinburgh.
Internal deadline: 18 August 2017 (Friday)
This year St Andrews can support two Ernest Rutherford Fellowship applications, for which we have set an internal deadline of the 18 August to ensure that any candidates we cannot support have the opportunity to seek support elsewhere. We are aiming to make a decision before the 25 August.
If you are interested in applying for an Ernest Rutherford Fellowship through one of our quota places, or if you know someone external who might be interested, please send the following to Claudia Cyganowski by the 18 August 2017:
* draft ERF proposal (or similar recent proposal), * CV and publication list, * name and contact details of 2 potential reviewers.
For more information please visit the Astronomy Group webpage.
The magazine has been set up "to find out what is going on in Scotland with Space research, Space technology, Space tourism, Space education, and other aspects of the subject including Astronomy and Earth Sciences, to inform one another and disseminate the information, to highlight future possibilities for the benefit of the public and policy makers".
The St Andrews Centre for Exoplanet Science featured in Issue 2 of the new quarterly magazine Space & Scotland.
View an electronic version of the Space & Scotland magazine:
Issue 1 (Winter 2016/17), Issue 2 (Spring 2017), Issue 3 (Summer 2017)