Cathryn M0IBG is a Professor of Radio Science at the University of Bath, where she serves as Academic Director of the University of Bath Doctoral College. Cathryn developed a new Earth observation technique that uses ground-based and satellite data to image the ionosphere, providing information on how space weather may impact Global Positioning Systems (GPS). The technique has provided the first view of the ionosphere in response to space weather. Cathryn’s research allows us to understand the origins of space weather as well as identifying how to better forecast. She showed that magnetospheric electric fields cause large plasma enhancements and uplifts. The Government has invested several million to develop the ionosphere algorithms based on four-dimensional tomography Multi-Instrument Data Analysis Systems (MIDAS) for space weather forecasts. Her algorithms have also contributed to GPS simulations developed by Spirent. She was awarded the 2019 Institute of Physics Edward Appleton Medal and Prize.
Cathryn studied physics at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth completing her doctoral studies, exploring the use of radio tomography to study the Earth’s ionosphere. She was awarded the Royal Astronomical Society Keith Runcorn Prize (then Blackwell Prize) and University of Wales Granville Beynon prize for her dissertation.
Cathryn was awarded an Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Challenging Engineering fellowship to develop algorithms for four-dimensional tomography Multi-Instrument Data Analysis Systems (MIDAS). She joined the University of Bath in 1999, and has used her computational algorithms in medical physics, working with the Christie Hospital and Royal United Hospital Bath to image for human movement, particularly in Alzheimer’s disease. She led a fieldwork mission with the British Antarctic Survey to Antarctica, where she set up equipment at Rothera, Halley and in the Shackleton Mountains. She held a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award from 2009-2014.
In 2015 Cathryn was asked by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory to act as a UK government special adviser for the Emergencies sub group to examine infrastructure resilience to solar storms.
Cathryn holds a Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Fellowship. She is also involved with amateur radio having obtained a full licence with the callsign M0IBG and has written for The Conversation.