MIST

Magnetosphere, Ionosphere and Solar-Terrestrial

Latest news

MIST Council election results

The polls have closed, and Oliver Allanson (Reading) and John Coxon (Southampton) have been elected to MIST Council. The full results of 2018’s elections are as follows:

  • Oliver Allanson: 56 votes
  • John Coxon: 100 votes
  • Simon Pope: 27 votes
  • Samuel Wharton: 38 votes
  • Darren Wright: 40 votes

121 people cast two votes, and 19 cast a single vote, for a total of 140 responses. This is a turnout of 32.9% against the MIST mailing list, which comprises 426 eligible voters.

The chair of MIST Council, Ian McCrea, said:

I would like to congratulate John on his re-election to MIST Council and to congratulate Oliver on his election – we look forward to you joining us at our next meeting. To the unsuccessful candidates, I would like to say a sincere thank you for taking part and for your interest in being part of MIST Council. Obviously only two candidates can be successful in any given year, but there are elections every year and we hope that you will not be discouraged from standing again at a future date.

MIST Council would like to express their thanks and appreciation to Luke Barnard who is leaving MIST Council, and whose contributions over the last three years have been invaluable. We would also like to thank Q Stanley for handling the technical aspects of the election.

Astronomy/Solar System Advisory Panels call for priority projects

The Astronomy and Solar System Advisory Panels have been asked to identify a few priority projects, comprising 'large scale' (>£50M), ‘medium scale’ (£10-50M) and ‘small scale’ (<£10M) projects that can be started within the next 6 years. The outline business cases put forward by the community will be considered by STFC’s Executive Board and Science Board in September. We will then work with the community and UKRI to identify the best way of taking these ideas forward. 

Interested parties should summarize their ideas for priority projects using the template provided. Only those projects considered to be the most exciting and highest priority (by the Advisory Panels) will be asked to develop an outline business case. Please email your project summary to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Astronomy) or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Solar System). If your project has overlap with both astronomy and solar system, then please indicate this in your summary and send to both panels. The deadline is Wednesday 18 July 2018. If you have any questions regarding remit, format or submission, please feel free to contact the relevant Advisory Panel.

Jonathan Eastwood wrote, in his email to the MIST mailing list:

STFC has launched a consultation with research communities, designed to identify new world class science and technology proposals for potential future investment. The aim is to develop an ambitious portfolio of outline business cases for priority projects that relate to our strategic scientific and research infrastructure objectives, covering our remit, and driven by our communities… the scope of the projects is very broad – what is needed are exciting and ambitious scientific projects within the broad remit of astronomy and solar system science. Funds for estates and campus development are out of scope, and projects should not be an uplift to the grant/fellowship lines. This exercise is not part of the Evaluation of Astronomy which STFC will undertake in the Autumn (part of its assessment of the wider astronomy, particle and nuclear physics programmes), but projects identified here will be forwarded to that exercise to ensure information is not lost.

MIST Council would like to urge members of the MIST community to engage with this exercise in order to make sure that MIST science is well-represented in STFC strategy in the future.

Petition to eliminate harassment and bullying

MIST council is committed to fostering an open and inclusive scientific environment.

Many people will have seen the recent reports of bullying and harassment in Universities are becoming more and more widespread. In one of many steps to highlight the need for these actions to stop, an open letter and petition has been prepared by members of the wider community, including faculty from Imperial, UCL, and other UK and international institutions. This cross-institute example underlines the importance of eliminating harassment and bullying from the university and research environments. If you wish to sign the petition, you can find it by clicking here.

Our community is a big part of the RAS, which has a Code of Conduct and a Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Policy that we must adhere to:

  1. Promoting an inclusive environment for all.
    2. Promoting equality of opportunity.
    3. Welcoming applications from all backgrounds.
    4. Supporting and developing careers for all.
    5. Recruiting and promoting staff based on merit, rather than absence or presence of underrepresented characteristics.

We would strongly encourage our community to continue to participate in eradicating these issues from our scientific and every day lives.

Rishbeth Prizes 2018

MIST Council would like to congratulate Joe Eggington and Rob Shore for winning the Rishbeth Prizes for best student talk and best poster respectively at the 2018 Spring MIST meeting held in Southampton.

Joe’s talk was on the topic of ‘Magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling in global MHD simulations’, and Rob’s poster posed the question ‘How directly driven are the polar ionospheric equivalent currents?’

As part of winning the prize, Joe and Rob have been invited to write articles for Astronomy & Geophysics – watch out for those in an upcoming issue!

MIST recognised in 2018 RAS awards

MIST Council would like to congratulate those who have been recognised for contributions to the field by the Royal Astronomical Society recently, but particularly we would like to congratulate those members of the MIST community who are to be honoured at the next National Astronomy Meeting.

Emma Bunce has won the Chapman Medal for outstanding contributions to the understanding of the magnetospheres of gas giants, Matt Taylor has won the Service Award for his exceptional work in co-ordinating and contributing to ESA's Rosetta mission, and Jim Wild has been awarded the James Dungey lectureship for his excellent and highly relevant work on substorms and reconnection in the magnetotail. We would also like to congratulate Kerri Donaldson Hanna for winning the Winton Award for planetary science.

MIST Council applauds each of the winners, alongside the other academics who will be recognised in Liverpool this spring!

More details are available at the RAS website.

Notes from MIST Council meeting 29/10/12

29 October 2012, Conference room 13, RAL

Participants: Mike Hapgood, Emma Woodfield, Mario Bisi, Rob Fear, David Southwood

  1. Agree agenda
    1. Agenda agreed
  2. Draft SSAP report
    1. Draft and Agreed note to send on behalf of STP community
    2. Sent 4 minutes before formal deadline at noon
    3. Put on MIST web site
  3. Autumn MIST
    1. Coffee and rooms are booked
      1. RAS LT for talks
      2. Council room for coffee
    2. Can have 3 sessions and run until about 17:00
    3. Tim Horbury to give invited talk
    4. Will need talk on state of MIST
    5. Deadline is coming Friday (2 Nov) - already have 6 abstracts
    6. Posters
      1. Suggestion to put boards against Council table
      2. But this limits us to use one side of board
      3. Will review when we know how many posters we have
  4. Dungey Special Meeting and Lecture
    1. Reviewed David's draft annoucement
    2. David chasing up other old students of Jim
    3. Looking for younger scientists to talk about topics on which Jim has worked
      1. ULF waves
      2. reconnection
      3. radiation belts
    4. Meeting is in GeolSoc LT so can handle 200+
      1. but some concern we may exceed this
      2. do we need tickets so numbers are controlled?
      3. David may ask Imperial secretary to collect registrations
  5. NAM 2013
    1. Plenaries
      1. First choice is Mark Lester as Mark missed slot at NAM 2012
      2. Other possibilities
        • Andrew Fazakerley - follow up to his Chapman Medal
        • Malcolm Dunlop - SWARM
        • Richard Horne - RBSP
      3. Mike to discuss with SOC
    2. How to build programme?
      1. Need to make a Call for Ideas
      2. Start Call at Autumn MIST
  6. MIST web site
    1. Rob and Emma now in control of web site
    2. Reviewed content on-line and agreed some changes
    3. Remove old links
    4. Tidy up list of groups
    5. Collect data on indicators of esteem for MIST scientists
      • Fellowships
      • Awards and Named Lectures
  7. Promoting our science
    1. Briefing papers
      1. Mike to chase up old list ot proposed papers
      2. Some exist in draft form
      3. EISCAT_3D should be a priority
      4. Re-prompt for ideas at Autumn MIST
      5. Can authors recycle material from proposals
      6. Other options
        • Rad belts - can Spacecast help?
        • Artificial aurora - Lancaster?
        • History - David interested to write about Alfven, Chapman, Dungey and Birkeland
    2. Promote outreach sites
      1. SunEarthPlan.net
      2. SolarStormWatch
  8. AOB
    1. Should we have a MIST equivalent to UKSP nuggets?
      1. How to sustain?
    2. MIST Council election 2013
      1. needs to take place before "Spring MIST" @ NAM2013
      2. Mike to flag this at Autumn MIST
      3. circulate note to Heads of Groups - ask them to encourage candidates so we have a good election
    3. Date of next MIST Council meeting
      1. telecon in Feb/Mar 2013
    4. Rishbeth Prize money
      1. Mike to check status with RAS