Astronomer Takes UNH Post
CAS Astronomy Professor Harlan Spence will join the University of New Hampshire faculty
BU is losing one of its star professors.
Harlan Spence, a College of Arts & Sciences professor of astronomy, will become head of the University of New Hampshire’s Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space (EOS) on January 1, 2010.
Spence is bringing six projects to UNH, totaling more than $55 million in funding from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the National Science Foundation. His two long-term projects, the Radiation Belt Storm Probes mission and the Cosmic Ray Telescope for the Effects of Radiation (CRaTER) project, will further strengthen the university’s role in space physics.
“I am very excited to be starting as director of the institute,” says Spence (CAS’83). “It will allow me to return to my original academic pursuits in geophysics. EOS is a phenomenal place with great opportunities, and it is very exciting.”
With 275 faculty, staff, and students working on more than 300 research projects, EOS is UNH’s largest research program. As director, Spence will work under the university provost and will oversee the institution, which has four research centers.
“My goal is to better integrate the research being done with the academics,” says Spence. “It is important that they become one.”
Spence has taught at Boston University for 15 years; he was chair of the astronomy department from 2002 to 2005. He has been a frequent advisor to U.S. science agencies.
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