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Exploring Water on Planets: Why, How and Where ? (online)

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Dr. Essam Heggy
University of Southern California &
NASA’s Jet propulsion Laboratory

Water on Mars, ice on the Moon, oceans under Jupiter icy satellites and more ice and water on asteroids and comets—extra-terrestrial water used to be subject of speculation and science fiction but thanks to new equipment and techniques we now know for sure that the life-giving liquid exists off Earth.
Planetary radar sounding and imaging techniques have provided new insights into understanding what’s on and under the surface of the Earth, Moon, and Mars—as well as numerous other bodies in our solar system. There’s even evidence to suggest that Mars could have known active episodes of Earth-like subterranean water movement. Dr Heggy will speak about how low-frequency radar sounding equipment is being used to explore evidence of buried Martian geological features, including possible deep subsurface aquifers or ice deposits. He will also discuss the exploration of ice on comets from the ROSETTA mission and take a look at NASA’s future plans to probe subsurface water on Jupiter’s icy moons.
Dr Essam Heggy is a Planetary Scientist at the Viterbi School of Engineering in the University of Southern California and affiliate of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Heggy’s research interests in space and planetary geophysics aim to understand water and ice distributions in Earth arid regions, Mars, the Moon, icy satellites and near Earth objects. His research involves probing structural, hydrological and volcanic elements in terrestrial and planetary environments using different types of radar imaging and sounding techniques as well as measuring the electromagnetic properties of rocks in the radar frequency range. He works with a range of space exploration projects including with the Mars Express Orbiter, the Chandrayaan-1, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and the Rosetta mission. He is also a contributing scientist to several proposed planetary and terrestrial radar imaging and soundings experiments and has participated in several NASA radar mission concept designs.

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