Introduction of Space Science Institute/ Lunar and Planetary Science Laboratory
In response to launching of the Chinese Chang’E Lunar Project, Macau University of Science and Technology (MUST) established the Space Science Institute (hereafter referred to as SSI) in 2011.The establishment of SSI in Macau University of Science and Technology is based on the research background of the university and is adapted to the space exploration research that has been developed very fast in the world in recent years. The objectives of SSI are the innovative research on lunar and planetary science as well as the popularization of the research achievements to the Macao society.
The Lunar and Planetary Science Laboratory was formed in 2014 as a co-laboratory of Chinese Academy of Sciences Key Laboratory of Lunar and Deep Space Exploration. Working closely with its partner laboratory, the Laboratory pursues academic research with a focus on scientific results derived from China’s Lunar and Deep Space Exploration Program. In view of the large amount of data that are or will soon be made available through this national effort, the Laboratory has been quickly building up its strength in performing data analysis and interpretation, as well as in studying fundamental mechanisms of related processes. The Laboratory is striving to achieve prominent international standing in lunar and planetary research.
There are 26 full time research staffs and 14 part-time research staffs in this Institute , including 6 Professors, 2 Associate Professors, 11 Assistant Professors, 1 Research Associate, 6 Post-doctoral Fellows, 5 Distinguished Advisers, 5 Distinguished Guest Professor, 4 Distinguished Guest Associate Professors.
In consideration of the mid-to-long-term plan of China’s Lunar and Deep Space Exploration Program, the international development of planetary exploration, and the current strength of the Laboratory, four main research directions have been identified as focus of the Laboratory’s development in 2015-2019:
(1) Lunar and planetary geomorphology, geochemistry, physicalprocesses, structure and evolution;
(2) Planetary atmospheres and space environments;
(3) Giant planets and exoplanets;
(4) Small bodies of the Solar System.