Personal profile


SCIENTIFIC EXPERIENCE: I studied the physics of electron beams and plasma clouds injected from rockets and the Space Shuttle while at Standord University and University of Michigan (1984-1994). I developed a 3D particle-in-cell code with Professor Oscar Buneman, which we used to simulate electron beam and cloud injections. When I returned to Denmark, I worked in the Ørsted project at the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI) - as the Project Scientists when Eigil Friis-Christensen left DMI. With Ørsted data I studied small-scale, field-aligned, electric currents in the upper atmosphere. While at DMI I expanded into the field of electrical discharges in the upper atmosphere powered by thunderstorms below.  At DTU Space we study lightning and high-altitude discharges using a number of codes developed by Olivier Chanrion and by conducting optical observations from Observatoire Midi Pyrénées and other locations. The high-altitude discharges are the Sprites, Jets and Gigantic Jets. We lead the ASIM payload for the Internationa Space Station (Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor). It will study Lightning, Sprites, Jets, Gigantic jets and Terestrial Gamma-ray Flashes. ASIM will be launched in the spring of 2018. We also lead the SAINT PhD network of 15 PhD's and 19 partner institutions, funded by H2020. SAINT is "Science and Innovation with Thunderstorms". It is designed around ASIM science, but includes modelling, ground observations of thunderstorms and labortatory experiment of high-voltage gas discharges.

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Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

Education/Academic qualification

Space Science, University of Copenhagen

1 Jul 19781 Feb 1982


  • User defined:
  • mesosphere
  • space science
  • lightning
  • electrical discharges


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