Dr Divya Persaud

  • Collaborative Research Fellowship (Earth Sciences)

Biography

Dr. Divya M. Persaud (she/her) is a planetary geologist. Her doctoral thesis centered on processing and visualising 3D terrain data as virtual outcrops to investigate the exposed layers in Sakarya Vallis in Gale Crater, Mars. She has an interest in developing novel methods of applying remote sensing datasets to mission planning and science targeting for surface exploration. Dr. Persaud is also an active composer, poet, and speaker passionate about science communication and ethics in space exploration. She is co-founder and co-organiser of Space Science in Context, a global conference bringing together physical and social science practitioners and innovating in accessible and equitable meetings.

Education:

  • Ph.D., University College London, 2022
  • B.A., Geology and Music, University of Rochester, NY, 2017

Research interests

Current research

Spacecraft, such as landers and rovers, that land on terrestrial planets often include down-pointing engineering cameras to aid in hazard detection during entry, descent, and landing. However, these cameras provide an opportunity for understanding the geologic context for the spacecraft. Further, emerging cost-effective, short-lived spacecraft, such as planetary penetrators, are emerging as concepts that benefit from efficient data collection that is still useful for science.

We are investigating scientific imagers as payloads on future ascent/descent spacecraft. We are applying a multi-modal approach to instrument concept development that combines image simulation to constrain the optical design; first-order prototyping using an emulator mounted on a drone; and validation using the end-use: field geology. This approach will first focus on Earth sites as a demonstration, and then include theoretical applications on Mars.

Other projects

Sampling Strategy for Europa

As a postdoc at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, I used archival Apollo 16 imagery and other data to investigate sampling strategies for future landed missions on Europa. This research is ongoing. I also supported project science on Europa Clipper and Europa Lander.

Stratigraphy in Gale Crater, Mars

My doctoral work involved processing co-registered, multi-resolution 3D orbital imagery of Gale crater, Mars, and 2D mapping and 3D visualization of these datasets. I performed digital outcrop analysis to investigate the exposed layers in Sakarya Vallis, Gale crater, Mars using PRo3D. This work also developed into experimentation in digital terrain model (DTM) quality analysis and working towards better understanding of the "where" of map products.

I was also involved in collaborations on simulating 3D imagery for descent spacecraft, and investigating the subsurface geology of Elysium Planitia. I was an affiliate with the ExoMars PanCam team.

Brydon, G., Persaud, D. M., Jones, G., 2021, Planetary Topography Measurement by Descent Stereophotogrammetry, Planetary and Space Science, 202, 105242. doi: 10.1016/j.pss.2021.105242

Xiong, S., Tao, Y., Persaud, D. M., Campbell, J. D., Putri, A.D.R., Muller, J.-P., 2020, Subsurface reflections detected by SHARAD data revealing buried channels and islands over the Elysium Planitia, Earth and Space Science. doi: 10.1029/2019EA000968

Crater relaxation on Saturnian satellites

Saturn's icy moons are of interest to astrobiology as potential hosts of subsurface water oceans, whether in the present day or in the past. To help understand their interiors, I have been researching how to improve estimating crater depths before long-term viscous relaxation. This has involved testing different methods of estimating initial crater depths of Rhea and Dione using digital elevation models (from Cassini ISS imagery), investigating methods of producing this terrain data for icy moon topography, and producing crater size catalogues for four moons. This work is ongoing.

Previous research

I have further interests in geophysics and experience with other applications of remote sensing. My previous work includes X-ray spectroscopy of meteorites; mission concept development for a radar instrument at Mars; paleomagnetism of impact glasses; and research on the LiDAR instrument on the MESSENGER spacecraft.

Publications

List by: Type | Date

Jump to: 2024 | 2023 | 2022 | 2021
Number of items: 18.

2024

Vance, S. D. et al. (2024) Investigating Europa’s habitability with the Europa Clipper. Space Science Reviews, 219(8), 81. (doi: 10.1007/s11214-023-01025-2)

Daubar, I. J. et al. (2024) Planned geological investigations of the Europa Clipper mission. Space Science Reviews, 220, 18. (doi: 10.1007/s11214-023-01036-z)

2023

Persaud, D.M. and Phillips, C.B. (2023) How to Sample an Alien World? Lessons for Europa from Apollo 16. 54th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 2023, The Woodlands, Texas, USA, 13-17 Mar 2023. p. 2051.

2022

Cameron, M. E. et al. (2022) Science-driven Preparations for Europa Surface Operations. AGU Fall Meeting, Chicago, IL., USA, 12-16 December 2022.

Phillips, C. B., Persaud, D. M. and Hand, K. P. (2022) Correlation of Surface and Subsurface Properties when Choosing a Sampling Site: Applications from Mars and the Moon to Sampling Locations on Europa and Other Ocean Worlds. AGU Fall Meeting, Chicago, IL, USA, 12-16 December 2022.

Persaud, D. and Barnes, R. (2022) Morpho-Stratigraphy of Sakarya Vallis, Gale Crater, Mars: A Virtual Outcrop Study. 54th meeting of the AAS Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS), London, Canada, 2–7 October 2022. pp. 503-01.

Persaud, D. M. and Armstrong, E.S. (2022) Space Science in Context: Lessons Learned and Recommendations for IDEA Practice and Beyond. Advancing IDEA in Planetary Science 2022, 25-29 Aug 2022.

Rivera-Valentin, E. G., Lynch, K. L. and Working Group, (2022) A Consensus Report on Recommendations from the 2022 Advancing IDEA in Planetary Science Conference. Documentation. Zenodo. (doi: 10.5281/zenodo.6656887).

Korth, H. et al. (2022) Europa Clipper Mission Update. EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022. EGU22-6052. (doi: 10.5194/egusphere-egu22-6052)

Cameron, M. E. et al. (2022) Destination Europa: Science-driven Preparations for Touching an Unknown Surface. 2022 Astrobiology Science Conference, Atlanta, GA, USA, 15-20 May 2022.

Phillips, C. B., Scully, J. E.C., Cameron, M. E., Craft, K. L., Grima, C., Persaud, D. M. and Hand, K. P. (2022) A Reconnaissance Strategy for Landing on Europa, Based on Europa Clipper Data. 2022 Astrobiology Science Conference, Atlanta, GA, USA, 15-20 May 2022.

Scully, J. E., Phillips, C. B., Cameron, M. E., Craft, K. L., Persaud, D. M. , Grima, C. and Hand, K. P. (2022) Applying Lessons Learned from Previous Planetary Missions to Reconnaissance and Landing Site Selection for the Europa Lander Mission Concept. 2022 Astrobiology Science Conference, Atlanta, GA, USA, 15-20 May 2022.

Cameron, M.E. et al. (2022) Science-Driven Preparations for Landing on Europa. In: 53rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, 7–11 March 2022, p. 2470.

Scully, J.E.C., Phillips, C.B., Cameron, M.E., Craft, K., Persaud, D. M. , Grima, C. and Hand, K.P. (2022) The Application of Lessons Learned from Previous Landing and/or Sampling Missions to the Europa Lander Mission Concept. 53rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (LPSC2022), Houston, TX, USA, 7-11 March 2022.

Pappalardo, R., Howell, S., Korth, H., Craft, K., Daubar, I., Klima, R., Matiella Novak, A., Persaud, D. , Phillips, C. and and the Europa Clipper Science Team, (2022) Europa Clipper: Mission Status and Update. In: 53rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, 7–11 March 2022, p. 2710.

2021

Howell, S. et al. (2021) Europa Clipper: Mission Status and Update. AGU Fall Meeting 2021, New Orleans, LA, USA, 13-17 Dec 2021.

Brydon, G. , Persaud, D.M. and Jones, G.H. (2021) Planetary topography measurement by descent stereophotogrammetry. Planetary and Space Science, 202, 105242. (doi: 10.1016/j.pss.2021.105242)

Xiong, S., Tao, Y., Persaud, D. M. , Campbell, J. D., Putri, A. R. D. and Muller, J.‐P. (2021) Subsurface reflectors detected by SHARAD reveal stratigraphy and buried channels over Central Elysium Planitia, Mars. Earth and Space Science, 8(1), e2019EA000968. (doi: 10.1029/2019EA000968)

This list was generated on Wed Jul 17 21:09:48 2024 BST.
Number of items: 18.

Articles

Vance, S. D. et al. (2024) Investigating Europa’s habitability with the Europa Clipper. Space Science Reviews, 219(8), 81. (doi: 10.1007/s11214-023-01025-2)

Daubar, I. J. et al. (2024) Planned geological investigations of the Europa Clipper mission. Space Science Reviews, 220, 18. (doi: 10.1007/s11214-023-01036-z)

Brydon, G. , Persaud, D.M. and Jones, G.H. (2021) Planetary topography measurement by descent stereophotogrammetry. Planetary and Space Science, 202, 105242. (doi: 10.1016/j.pss.2021.105242)

Xiong, S., Tao, Y., Persaud, D. M. , Campbell, J. D., Putri, A. R. D. and Muller, J.‐P. (2021) Subsurface reflectors detected by SHARAD reveal stratigraphy and buried channels over Central Elysium Planitia, Mars. Earth and Space Science, 8(1), e2019EA000968. (doi: 10.1029/2019EA000968)

Research Reports or Papers

Rivera-Valentin, E. G., Lynch, K. L. and Working Group, (2022) A Consensus Report on Recommendations from the 2022 Advancing IDEA in Planetary Science Conference. Documentation. Zenodo. (doi: 10.5281/zenodo.6656887).

Conference or Workshop Item

Persaud, D.M. and Phillips, C.B. (2023) How to Sample an Alien World? Lessons for Europa from Apollo 16. 54th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 2023, The Woodlands, Texas, USA, 13-17 Mar 2023. p. 2051.

Cameron, M. E. et al. (2022) Science-driven Preparations for Europa Surface Operations. AGU Fall Meeting, Chicago, IL., USA, 12-16 December 2022.

Phillips, C. B., Persaud, D. M. and Hand, K. P. (2022) Correlation of Surface and Subsurface Properties when Choosing a Sampling Site: Applications from Mars and the Moon to Sampling Locations on Europa and Other Ocean Worlds. AGU Fall Meeting, Chicago, IL, USA, 12-16 December 2022.

Persaud, D. and Barnes, R. (2022) Morpho-Stratigraphy of Sakarya Vallis, Gale Crater, Mars: A Virtual Outcrop Study. 54th meeting of the AAS Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS), London, Canada, 2–7 October 2022. pp. 503-01.

Persaud, D. M. and Armstrong, E.S. (2022) Space Science in Context: Lessons Learned and Recommendations for IDEA Practice and Beyond. Advancing IDEA in Planetary Science 2022, 25-29 Aug 2022.

Korth, H. et al. (2022) Europa Clipper Mission Update. EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022. EGU22-6052. (doi: 10.5194/egusphere-egu22-6052)

Cameron, M. E. et al. (2022) Destination Europa: Science-driven Preparations for Touching an Unknown Surface. 2022 Astrobiology Science Conference, Atlanta, GA, USA, 15-20 May 2022.

Phillips, C. B., Scully, J. E.C., Cameron, M. E., Craft, K. L., Grima, C., Persaud, D. M. and Hand, K. P. (2022) A Reconnaissance Strategy for Landing on Europa, Based on Europa Clipper Data. 2022 Astrobiology Science Conference, Atlanta, GA, USA, 15-20 May 2022.

Scully, J. E., Phillips, C. B., Cameron, M. E., Craft, K. L., Persaud, D. M. , Grima, C. and Hand, K. P. (2022) Applying Lessons Learned from Previous Planetary Missions to Reconnaissance and Landing Site Selection for the Europa Lander Mission Concept. 2022 Astrobiology Science Conference, Atlanta, GA, USA, 15-20 May 2022.

Scully, J.E.C., Phillips, C.B., Cameron, M.E., Craft, K., Persaud, D. M. , Grima, C. and Hand, K.P. (2022) The Application of Lessons Learned from Previous Landing and/or Sampling Missions to the Europa Lander Mission Concept. 53rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (LPSC2022), Houston, TX, USA, 7-11 March 2022.

Howell, S. et al. (2021) Europa Clipper: Mission Status and Update. AGU Fall Meeting 2021, New Orleans, LA, USA, 13-17 Dec 2021.

Conference Proceedings

Cameron, M.E. et al. (2022) Science-Driven Preparations for Landing on Europa. In: 53rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, 7–11 March 2022, p. 2470.

Pappalardo, R., Howell, S., Korth, H., Craft, K., Daubar, I., Klima, R., Matiella Novak, A., Persaud, D. , Phillips, C. and and the Europa Clipper Science Team, (2022) Europa Clipper: Mission Status and Update. In: 53rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, 7–11 March 2022, p. 2710.

This list was generated on Wed Jul 17 21:09:48 2024 BST.

Grants

2021 Meetings grant, PI Royal Astronomical Society Space Science in Context 2023
2020 Research-led Initiative Award, PI University College London Space Science in Context 2020

Professional activities & recognition

Prizes, awards & distinctions

  • 2021: Meetings Fund (Royal Astronomical Society)
  • 2020: Researcher-led Initiative Award (University College London)
  • 2018: Elizabeth Puchnarewicz Award for Outstanding Contribution to Public Outreach (University College London)

Professional & learned societies

  • 2023: Communications Lead, Space Generation Advisory Council, Ethics and Human Rights
  • 2021 - 2023: Vice Chair of the Board, JustSpace Alliance
  • 2021: , AAS Division of Planetary Sciences
  • 2021: , Royal Astronomical Society
  • 2019: , Institute of Physics
  • 2019: , European Geosciences Union
  • 2019: , Europlanet Society
  • 2014: Member, American Geophysical Union

Selected international presentations

  • 2022: 54th Annual Meeting of the Division for Planetary Sciences (London, Ontario)
  • 2021: NASA Space Apps Challenge NYC (New York City, US)
  • 2022: Death Valley Dark Sky Festival (Death Valley National Park, US)