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Dr Claire Foullon

Senior Lecturer


Telephone: 01392 725653

Extension: (Streatham) 5653

Laver Building, Room: L722
Streatham Campus 

Link to STFC PhD Studentship funding application to appear here (deadline: TBC April 2023).

Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Undergraduate Class Teaching: Module descriptors in 2022/23:
- MTHM045 - Space Weather and Plasmas  - If you would like to know a bit more before taking this module, watch this Video @2018 Space:Exe Conference
- MTH2004 - Vector Calculus and Applications

Course Director: STFC Introductory Solar System Plasmas Summer School 2018, August 27-31, 2018

Main Organiser: IAU Symposium 335: Space Weather of the Heliosphere: Processes and Forecasts, July 17-21, 2017

My Profile: I am a senior lecturer with over 20 years of research experience in solar and space physics and until early 2017 I have been holding a prestigious and personal research fellowship (STFC Advanced Fellowship 2012-2017). I am a Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) Councillor, Vice-President of Commission E3 Solar Impact throughout the Heliosphere for the International Astronomical Union (IAU), International Space Weather Initiative (ISWI) UK coordinator, member of European Space Agency’s Solar System and Exploration Working Group (SSWEG) and the UK Space Agency’s Science Programme Advisory Committee (SPAC). I have acquired my research experience and studied while residing in England, Belgium, Scotland, and prior to that France.

Research: I study our solar-terrestrial environment. I work with remote and in-situ multi-spacecraft data revealing properties measured on the Sun or in space, and I combine observations and data analysis with magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) theory. My research goal is to understand instabilities, governed by magnetized flows, common to space, solar and astrophysical plasma environments, and to develop the framework for space weather applications.

Research Interests: Solar system, geo-, astro- and space plasma physics, combining theory, observations and data analysis:
- Remote and in-situ multi-spacecraft data analysis of solar-terrestrial plasmas;
- Magnetospheric physics, e.g. Pc5 pulsations, boundary layers and solar wind plasma entry;
- Solar physics, e.g. theory of MHD waves and interpretation of coronal waves and instabilities;
- Space weather and Sun-Earth Connections.

Researh Group: This group is forming (PhD Student & Postdoctoral Fellow) and is looking to expand. I offer a research program in Heliophysics on "Multi-spacecraft investigations of solar and heliospheric plasmas".

Heliophysics is in its golden age, with an unprecedented number of satellites providing observations of unparalleled quality, either (remotely) of the Sun or (in-situ) of the solar wind. The project will be to investigate plasma and dynamical properties using the complementarities of multi-spacecraft observations. The objective is to reveal phenomena and unravel the physics governing key regions of our Sun-Earth system in the chain of space weather events that can affect our radiation environment, our communication systems and our climate. As well as joining the Centre for Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics, the PhD student will directly benefit from links with the Institute for Data Sciences and Artificial Intelligence (IDSAI), the Astrophysics cluster and the nearby Met Office space weather activities. This brand new PhD project will equip the student with skills suited to address future science with Solar Orbiter, the ESA mission that was launched in 2020.

Keywords: Sun, Space Weather, Data Sciences

Motivated and strong applicants for either PhD scholarship application or independent postdoctoral research in this field are encouraged to contact me for informal inquiries (see link to funding opportunities here and at the top of the page).

Link to STFC PhD Studentship funding application to appear here (deadline: TBC April 2023).


Link to EPSRC PhD Studentship funding application (deadline: midnight (GMT) on 27th February 2023).

Choice of 3 projects starting in 2023-24:

1) "Solar and space data analysis for major risk space weather forecasting", second supervisor Dr. Jan Sieber

EPSRC Research Areas: 
Artificial intelligence technologies
Fluid dynamics and aerodynamics
Mathematical physics
Plasma and lasers
Continuum mechanics

2) "Solar prominence seismology", second supervisor Prof. Andrew Gilbert

EPSRC Research Areas:
Fluid dynamics and aerodynamics
Mathematical physics
Non-linear systems
Plasma and lasers
Continuum mechanics

3) "Space in Your Hands", building the 3D prints to help the visually impaired see 'space', second supervisor TBC

EPSRC Research Areas: 
Graphics and visualisation
Fluid dynamics and aerodynamics
Mathematical physics
Plasma and lasers
Vision, hearing and other senses
Continuum mechanics


Faculty of Environment, Science and Economy (ESE)
Department of Mathematics and Statistics
Centre for Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics (CGAFD)
North Park Road
University of Exeter
Exeter EX4 4QF,
United Kingdom