It is only two and a half years now since the Czech Republic officially joined the European Space Agency, and already Czech scientists are playing a big role, with more than three dozen projects currently underway.
The country that offered the first European astronaut is returning to space now with, to name one example, the SWARM satellite mission to study the Earth’s magnetic field. There, experts from the Aeronautical Research and Test Institute, are providing accelerometers first developed in Czechoslovakia in the 1980s to precisely measure the trajectories of satellites, and they are among the top specialists in the world in this expertise.
Elsewhere, at the Institute of Experimental and Applied Physics, Zdeněk Vykydal is one of those helping the European Space Agency, or ESA, with the development of neutron detectors; he and Dr Stanislav Pospíšil told us more about their work for this edition of Science Journal.
Another Czech scientist who is bringing decades of experience to use in the ESA is Ivan Procházka of the Czech Technical University in Prague. A pioneer in methods of laser pulse transmissions, Dr Procházka and his team are working, among other things, on the ESA’s Atomic Clock Ensemble in Space. On the importance of this project and precision timekeeping for satellites in general, we speak with Dr Procházka’s colleague at the Department of Nuclear Physics, Jan Kodet.
Thank's to all those who contributed to this month's Science Journal.