Author Archives: Athena Coustenis

About Athena Coustenis

Athena Coustenis is a planetologist working at Paris-Meudon Observatory and studying the outer solar system, the giant planets, their satellites and the exoplanets. She is also interested in future space exploration of the external solar system.

Marie Curie at 150

Marie Curie at 150 – Celebrating Women in STEM The Struggle for Equality, Recognition and Reward Written by: Athena Coustenis & Thérèse Encrenaz

Planetary Sciences 2014 Prize Winners

AAS Division For Planetary Sciences Announces 2014 Prize Winners Athena Coustenis: recipient of the Harold Masursky Award for outstanding service to planetary science and exploration. Link to DPS 2014 Prize Recipients

Women in Planetary Science

Link to Women in Planetary Science

Matrix24

Link to Matrix24 (in Greek language)

Full Curriculum Vitae

Dr Athena Coustenis LESIA (Bat. 18) Observatoire de Meudon 5, place Jules Janssen 92195 Meudon Cedex France Athena.Coustenis@obspm.fr   Born in Athens, Greece. French and Greek citizenship. Professional status: Athena Coustenis is Director of Research 1st class with the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) of France, working at ...

astrobiologist

What is an astrobiologist? I came to Astrobiology quite early in my research. How could I miss the implications ‘Titan: the frozen Earth’, ‘organic chemistry closest to our planet’, the ‘methane cycle mimicking the water cycle on Earth’, etc. Of course, ...

future exploration

see the Cassini Grand Finale - End of Mission 9/15/2017

cassini-huygens era

The Cassini-Huygens era how does an astronomer work? In July 2004 the Cassini mission finally arrived at Saturn and entered into orbit around the planet, visiting the whole system. Even our wildest models and speculations hadn’t prepared us for what we’ve seen ...

beginnings

FROM A GREEK BEACH TO A TITAN LAKE SHORE Or, how a Greek girl became a planetologist   I come from a country where people look up at the sky quite often, especially at nighttime. And from ages lost in time, they usually try ...

early career

I did my PhD at Paris Observatory in Meudon, getting my first ‘taste’ of Titan from Voyager 1 infrared data working with colleagues who since then have become good friends. Once I got a glimpse of Titan, I was hooked, ...

short bio

Athena Coustenis was born in Athens, Greece and grew up in a garden suburb by the Saronic Bay before moving to France where she earned two Masters degrees and one PhD in Astronomy and Space Techniques (she started another PhD ...

Athena Coustenis: List of publications

COUSTENIS Athena Director of research, Science National research Center Laboratoire d'Etudes Spatiales et d'Instrumentation en Astrophysique (LESIA) UMR8109 Observatoire de Paris-Meudon 92195 Meudon Cedex FRANCE List of publications download a PDF List of publications and communications   200 publications, 500 presentations, 3500 citations, H=34 Thesis 1.    Coustenis, A., 1989. L'atmosphère de Titan à ...

Good-bye Cassini

I was at Caltech in California on September 15 2017, with 1500 other people, colleagues, friends and their families, to witness the «end-of-mission» event for Cassini. Early in the morning, at 2 am, I got up and drove to the site, ...

My New Book, Life Beyond Earth: The Search for Habitable Worlds in the Universe

By A. Coustenis and Th. Encrenaz Cambridge University Press It all started with Therese and I getting interested in exoplanets, the (still) new field in astronomy dealing with the planets discovered (about 1000 by now) around other stars than our Sun. And ...

GRAVITY : The Journey To And From Earth

I’m sure you’ve all seen the movie GRAVITY, otherwise you’re not really so interest in space or such rocket-freaks as I am. If you haven’t, what follows includes spoilers… Some of my friends who saw it said it was excellent but ...

The Day the Earth Smiled at Saturn

On 19 July 2013, my favorite space mission, Cassini, turned its cameras and took a picture of the Earth, of us, of all of us fitting us in a pixel. This has happened before a couple of times, but this ...

The job of being an astronomer

  How does one become an astronomer?   What is it like in every day life once you’ve finished your studies and managed to get a job as a researcher in this field?   I recently contributed to a short movie by O. Borderie, @tmosphere ...

Funny things happening around Saturn

    We all know by now that Titan is fantastic...  But did you know that other wonderful worlds are evolving around the Lord of the Rings (Kronos, Saturn, whatever you want to call the giant planet). Just a few days ago, my ...

A Montgolfière for 40000 pounds…

    You know by now that I’m very interested in hot-air balloons (or Montgolfière as they were called by reference to their inventors, the Montgolfier brothers who lived during the second half of the 18th century in France). I imagined them ...

Titan exploration into the future

    We have finally recently found out which way things are planned to go for future exploration into the Outer Solar System. The decision from the two agencies (NASA and ESA) was posted on: http://www.nasa.gov/topics/solarsystem/features/20090218.html   As an extract: “National Aeronautics and Space Administration and European ...