MIST

Magnetosphere, Ionosphere and Solar-Terrestrial

Latest news

RAS Specialist Discussion suggestions invited

The RAS is inviting suggestions from Fellows of the RAS for Specialist Discussion meeting topics in the academic year 2019/20. These meetings are held on the second Friday of the month between October and May in a given academic year; the April meeting will be moved due to the second Friday being Good Friday. 

If you would like to organise one of these meetings, you can do so by submitting a proposal no longer than one A4 page. Geophysics proposals, including MIST science, should be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and the deadline is 1 March 2019.

Your proposal should include the title of the meeting; the names of the co-convenors (at least one of whom should be a RAS Fellow); the topics you intend to cover; the rationale (including timeliness); suggestions for invited speakers; and the preferred date for the meeting. More information, including detailed guidance, can be found on the RAS website.

 

RAS awards for 2019 announced

MIST Council would like to extend their congratulations to the 2019 Royal Astronomical Society award winners, as well as the recent AGU award winners. In particular, we congratulate the following MIST members recognised for their significant achievements:
  • Margaret Kivelson (UCLA) has been awarded the Gold Medal in Geophysics for a lifetime of outstanding achievement in understanding planetary magnetospheres and their connections to the planets they surround.
  • Tom Stallard (Leicester) has been awarded the Chapman medal in Geophysics for outstanding contributions to understanding planetary upper atmospheres and their interactions with their magnetospheres.
  • The Cluster Science and Operations Team have been awarded the Geophysics Group Award for their continued success ensuring the operations and scientific exploitation of the European Space Agency’s Cluster mission.
  • Mark Clilverd (British Antarctic Survey) has been awarded the James Dungey Lecture for their excellent research on energetic particle precipitation and its effects on the upper atmosphere and climate, and their vast experience delivering outstanding scientific talks to a broad range of audiences.
  • Julia Stawarz (Imperial College London) has been awarded the Basu United States Early Career Award for Research Excellence in Sun-Earth Systems Science for significant contributions in furthering understanding of collisional plasma turbulence and kinetic scale processes. 
MIST Council would also like to congratulate Fran Bagenal (Colorado), who has been awarded the AGU Van Allen Lecture for exceptional work on the understanding of planetary magnetospheres and outstanding contributions to planetary missions.

New community resources now available

MIST Council are pleased to announce three resources for the MIST community on the MIST website.

List of research groups

The list of MIST research groups has been updated to include the latest members of the MIST community, and to incorporate the latest links to their presences online. Old groups, or groups at institutions which have merged since the original list was written, are now excised, and the list should be an exhaustive and up-to-date list of British MIST institutions.

List of seminar speakers

We asked the MIST community to come forward and be listed on our list of seminar speakers, and the uptake has so far been very encouraging. The list ranges from relatively junior PhD students to academics at various institutions, and if you're arranging seminars for your research group, we would encourage you to take a look.

List of public engagement projects

Following the success of the recently-held Public Engagement in MIST (MIST+PE) symposium, there was an appetite for MIST Council to better advertise the public engagement being done at MIST institutions across the UK. The Public Engagement page on the MIST website aims to advertise the MIST community's strengths to the rest of the community.

If you spot omissions on any of the above pages, or would like us to include content, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

New mailing list for Python in space science

A new mailing list for space scientists who use Python has been founded. Angeline Burrell writes: 

There's been a recent push for more community python development and peer-to-peer support. Much of this is focused in the US at the moment, but as the results of the recent survey showed, MIST scientists are active or interested in python as well. If you would like to become involved, you can join the email list by contacting This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The mailing list will comprise discussion as well as webinars/telecons from Python users, so the list should be useful for a range of abilities with Python. To join, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

New MIST forum via Slack

In the days of yesteryear, there was a MIST forum provided for members of the MIST community to discuss things in a fashion more immediate and informal than email. It has been some years since the fabled MIST forum was a going concern, and in that time, the MIST Council has technically been in violation of the MIST Charter, which states that

MIST will provide an on-line forum to allow ongoing discussions and the formulation of ideas prior to public dissemination. This forum will be private, visible only to registered members; membership is restricted to active MIST scientists and is offered at the discretion of MIST council chair.

As a result of realising that the Charter mandates the maintenance of a forum, MIST Council have chosen to create a Slack workspace for the MIST community. If you would like to join, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. specifying the email address you would like to use, and you will be invited to join.

MIST Charter

At the 2007 Spring MIST meeting it was agreed that rather than a single MIST co-ordinator, MIST Council should be formed to organise and manage MIST activities. It was hoped that MIST Council would energise the MIST community whilst improving the visibility and impact of MIST science. The first MIST Council developed a charter, which now acts as a guiding document as to both the activities of the community and MIST Council.

Magnetosphere, Ionosphere and Solar Terrestrial science community (MIST)

Charter Statement

Last amended 5 January 2016

Article I – What is MIST?

1.1 This is the charter for the Magnetosphere, Ionosphere and Solar Terrestrial science community, also known as "MIST". It is a community of UK-based scientists with interests in physical processes within the Sun-Earth system, other solar system bodies and exo-planets; in particular the solar/stellar wind, moons and planetary atmospheres and magnetospheres.

1.2 MIST is recognised by the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) as a specialist group and as such is affiliated to the RAS.

Article II – Purpose

2.1  Provide a forum for the exchange of ideas among MIST scientists, students and other parties interested in MIST related science to advance our understanding of the energy transfer from the Sun through the solar system and associated subjects.

2.2  Promote our science and interests to the public, wider scientific community and other stakeholders in STP.

2.3  Conduct meetings to advance the state of knowledge of MIST related science and to promote and facilitate the sharing of ideas and techniques between members of the MIST community.

2.4  Distribute relevant information to its members via the MIST website, MIST mailing lists or other appropriate methods.

2.5  Promote discussions of programmatic issues relevant to the development of MIST related science.

2.6  To provide a means of influencing UK policy on MIST related science.

Article III – Membership

3.1  Any UK-based individual who is an active scientist in a MIST related science and who joins the MIST mailing list is considered a part of the MIST community. Active scientists based in other countries are also welcome to join the MIST mailing list and will be considered a part of the MIST community.

3.2  Any individual who is interested in supporting MIST related science who joins the MIST mailing list is considered a part of the MIST community.

3.3 Membership of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) is not required for membership of MIST, but is encouraged.

Article IV – MIST Council

4.1  MIST council is the collective term for the officers of MIST and consists of six individuals from the MIST community.

4.2  MIST council is responsible for ensuring that MIST fulfills its purpose as outlined in Article II.

4.3  MIST council will elect one member to act as Chair of MIST council. All other roles and responsibilities of the individual members of the council are decided by the council; these are reviewed after each election (including the Chair of MIST council). Possible roles are outlined in Appendix 1.

4.4  A minimum of one MIST council meeting will be held each year. Other meetings may be called by Chair, or a majority of the council members. The MIST council may meet and transact business by telephone conference call or email. Formal MIST councils require at least three members to participate.

4.5  The MIST council may, from time to time, charter additional members or subcommittees to address specific issues and business with specified portfolios.

4.6  MIST council can be removed from office via a vote of no confidence from the MIST community. To facilitate a confidence vote an extraordinary MIST business meeting must be called (by any member of the MIST community) if more than 10% of the MIST community (defined as 10% of the people subscribed to the MIST mailing list) is in agreement. The meeting must be held within a month of the announcement at an agreed venue. The complete MIST council will be removed if 2/3 of the meeting attendees declare no confidence in the MIST council.

Article V – MIST Elections

5.1  Members of MIST council serve terms of three years.

5.2  Elections are held annually in May and will be announced at the Spring MIST meeting. At least one slot on MIST council will be open in a given normal election year.

5.3  In a normal election the MIST council will appoint one (or more) member(s) of the MIST community to act as returning officer. The returning officer will not be eligible for election to MIST council and can be a current member of MIST council who is not seeking re-election.

5.4  Elections for the position of MIST council member will be held via an internet poll or electronic mail at the discretion of the returning officer. All members of the MIST community must be offered the opportunity to vote.

5.5  The returning officer will solicit nominations from the MIST community. Members of the MIST community can self nominate. To be eligible for election nominated candidates must be based in the UK. In the absence of a nomination MIST council reserves the right to co-opt members of the MIST community to serve on MIST council.

5.6  Upon closure of nominations, the returning officer will prepare the ballot and publicize the ballot to all members of the MIST community via the MIST mailing list and the MIST web page. The ballot will contain candidate names alphabetical by family name and home institute. The returning officer will allow for at least one month between electronic mailing and the election deadline.

5.7  Those candidates receiving the most valid votes will be elected to MIST council. In the case of a tie the position on MIST council will be decided by the drawing of lots by those candidates with a tied number of votes. No intermediate counts will be revealed. Final vote totals will be released only to the candidates.

5.8  Members of MIST council can stand for election for only two consecutive terms.There is no restriction on the absolute number of times that a member of the MIST community can stand for election.

5.9  A MIST council member can resign his/her position at any time by writing to the MIST council chair stating their intention to resign. MIST council will then co-opt a member of the MIST community to sit on council for the remainder of the resigning member’s term.

Article VI – MIST Meetings

6.1  A minimum of two MIST meetings will be held each year; one meeting will be held in the Spring the other in the Autumn.

6.2  A MIST Business meeting will be held annually, usually during the Spring MIST meeting. This meeting is open to the entire MIST community.

6.3  Minutes from MIST council and business meetings will be taken and made public on the MIST website.

6.4  MIST will provide an on-line forum to allow ongoing discussions and the formulation of ideas prior to public dissemination. This forum will be private, visible only to registered members; membership is restricted to active MIST scientists and is offered at the discretion of MIST council chair.

6.5  From time to time MIST council has the authority to call for a meeting of active MIST scientists to discuss programmatic issues. Each meeting shall decide on the form of meeting outputs and how they shall be disseminated.

Article VII – Amendment of Charter Statement

7.1  This charter statement can only be modified following consideration of the amendment by the MIST community.

7.2  Any member of the MIST community can offer a suggestion to amend the MIST charter. Any suggestion to amend must include the proposed text of the amendment.

7.3  Suggested amendments must first be put to the MIST council who will vote on whether to put the motion to amend to the MIST community.

7.4  Once a motion to amend passes MIST council it must be put to the community via electronic mail or an internet poll.

7.5 If greater than 10% of the MIST community (defined as 10% of the MIST list subscribers) votes against the motion to amend, the motion is not carried.

 

Appendix 1

Potential roles and responsibilities within MIST council:

  • Council chair
  • Web-site design and upkeep
  • Spring MIST meeting co-ordinator
  • Autumn MIST meeting co-ordinator
  • MIST mailing list moderator
  • Public relations and press releases