Professor Michele Karen Dougherty FRS
Professor of Space Physics, The Blackett Laboratory, Imperial College London
Distinguished for her scientific leadership of the international NASA-ESA-ASI Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and its moons. As Principal Investigator of the operation, data collection and analysis of observations from the magnetic field instrument onboard the Cassini spacecraft she was responsible for major advances in our understanding of the physics of the Saturn system. Her discovery of a dynamic and exotic atmosphere of water constituents and hydrocarbons at Saturn's moon Enceladus revolutionized our perspective of the role of planetary moons in the solar system and has opened up entire new areas of planetary research. This discovery has driven plans for new spacecraft missions to Saturn's moons, including the search for life in other parts of the solar system.