Welcome, Students!

Welcome to the Virginia Tech SuperDARN Student Interest Page. Here you will find information important to prospective, current, and future VT SuperDARN students, as well students with a general interest in Space Science. This includes information about the lab, news items of interest to students, and important training and policy information. If you have interest in SuperDARN or space related studies, please contact either Dr. Mike Ruohoniemi or Dr. Jo Baker.

The Virginia Tech SuperDARN radar group conducts research on Earth’s space environment using HF radars and allied instrumentation and operates the U.S. component of the international SuperDARN collaboration as an Upper Atmosphere Facility for the National Science Foundation. The activities of the group are student-centered and involve all facets of research, including hardware design, operations, data analysis, and collaborative support for the scientific community. The group is a component of the Space@VT research center within the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech.


Useful information
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Archive of Student Items
Please visit our Archive of Student Items page for important information such as research ethics training and other important information all SuperDARN students need to know.

News Items of Student Interest
Many of the news items below represent excellent opportunities for interested students at both the undergraduate and graduate level.
The 2021 Incoherent Scatter (IS) Radar Summer School will be held virtually on July 19-24. The school provides students with experience in designing and running experiments at IS radar facilities. IS Radars are large facilities used to study the ionosphere and provide measurements of altitude profiles of electron density, electron and ion temperatures, and ion plasma drift. There are several active IS Radars located in equatorial, mid-latitude, and high-latitude regions.

The IS Radar summer school is suitable for graduate and advanced undergraduate students and attendance is limited. Apply using the summer school web site: https://amisr.com/school(external link)

The deadline for application submission is March 5, 2021.

HAO: Newkirk Graduate Research Fellowship (Opportunity: March 1, 2021)

By: miker  on: Tue., Jan. 12, 2021 11:22 PM EST  (124 Reads)
The High Altitude Observatory (HAO) of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) located in Boulder, Colorado announces the availability of Newkirk Fellowships. The Newkirk Fellowship provides financial support to graduate students for research visits to HAO, allowing for 3 to 6 months per year in a single visit. The total supported length is 9 months, which can be spread out over up to 3 years. Newkirk Fellows will work with guidance from HAO scientists and engineers on projects related to their thesis, qualifying exams, or other research projects within the scope of HAO research including study of the Earth's upper atmosphere, solar physics and solar-terrestrial physics through observation, theory and instrumentation.To be eligible for the fellowship, the student must be enrolled full-time in a university graduate program having common interest with HAO research goals. Application deadline for fellowships starting in 2021 is March 1, 2021. Program website: https://www2.hao.ucar.edu/partnerships/visitor-program/newkirk-fellowship(external link)

The 2021 NCAR Earth System Science Internship (NESSI) program (Opportunity: February 7, 2021)

By: miker  on: Fri., Jan. 08, 2021 10:07 AM EST  (129 Reads)
The NCAR Earth System Science Internship (NESSI) is accepting applications from undergraduate and graduate students interested in conducting research in the Earth system sciences with NCAR scientists. Research topics include but are not limited to atmospheric science, computational science, engineering, and solar & space physics. The NESSI program is hosted by the NCAR office of Education & Outreach. The program is designed to support and promote Earth system science through research, mentoring, and community building. The application deadline is February 7, 2021.

Program website: https://ncar.ucar.edu/what-we-offer/education-outreach/undergraduate-graduate-programs/nessi(external link)
The Virginia Space Grant Consortium (VSGC) Undergraduate STEM Research Scholarship Program provides awards of up to $8,500 to rising juniors and seniors who are enrolled full-time in a program of study in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) and have a specific faculty-mentored research project that has NASA or aerospace relevance. Application deadline is January 29, 2021. See https://vsgc.odu.edu/undergraduatescholarships/(external link)

The VSGC Graduate Research STEM Fellowship Program provides fellowships of $6,000 in add-on support to graduate students to supplement and enhance basic research support. Applicants must be Student at NASA enrolled full-time in a program of study in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) and have a specific faculty-mentored research project that has NASA or aerospace relevance. Application deadline is January 29, 2021. See https://vsgc.odu.edu/graduatefellowships/(external link)

For a complete listing of posted student internships click on the menu item 'Student Opportunities' or directly on http://vt.superdarn.org/tiki-index.php?page=Student+Interest(external link)
NOAA is sponsoring a competition with support from NASA involving prize money to "better forecast changes in Earth's magnetic field", specifically the disturbance-storm-time index, Dst, which is a measure of the severity of geomagnetic storms. In the words of the announcement, "..we seek solutions that work on the raw, real-time data streams and are agnostic to sensor malfunctions and noise." The sources of real-time data are NOAA’s Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite and NASA's Advanced Composition Explorer (ACE) satellite. Prize money varies from $15k for first place to $2k for fourth place. The competition announcement can be found at https://www.drivendata.org/competitions/73/noaa-magnetic-forecasting/page/278/.(external link) The deadline for submissions is Feb. 12, 2021 11:59 PM
Art credit: NOAA MagNet website

Information about STEM summer research & fully funded graduate programs (Opportunity: Open)

By: miker  on: Wed., Dec. 09, 2020 09:44 PM EST  (319 Reads)
The Institute for Broadening Participation (IBP) designs and implements strategies to increase access to STEM education, funding, and careers, with special emphasis on diverse underrepresented groups. Towards this end, the IBP has created the website www.PathwaysToScience.org(external link) as a resource to help students find paid summer research programs and fully funded STEM graduate programs. The website currently lists
· 630 paid summer research programs for undergrads and grad students, including opportunities funded by NSF, NASA, NOAA, etc.
· 138 fully funded STEM masters programs
· 160 fully funded STEM PhD programs
The website includes a search tool to help identify opportunities.

NCAR Advanced Study Program for postdoctoral fellows (Opportunity: Dec. 21, 2020)

By: miker  on: Tue., Dec. 08, 2020 03:24 PM EST  (313 Reads)
The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) located in Boulder, Co. sponsors postdoctoral fellowships tthrough the Advanced Study Program (ASP). The program provides successful applicants with considerable freedom to pursue their own research interests. Fellows develop research projects in collaboration with NCAR scientists and engineers, but all are expected to choose their own research directions and are responsible for the design and conduct of their projects. The program website is https://asp.ucar.edu/postdocs/prospective-applicants(external link)
Virginia Tech graduate Dr. Dong Lin is a current ASP postdoc and is available to answer questions about the program.
Application deadline: December 21, 2020

2021 NASA Heliophysics Summer School (Opportunity: Jan. 22, 2021)

By: miker  on: Sun., Dec. 06, 2020 09:03 PM EST  (363 Reads)
The 2021 Heliophysics Summer School will be held June 15 - 22, 2021 in beautiful Boulder, Colorado. The school is seeking approximately 35 graduate students, from masters through postdoctoral fellows. Participants will learn about the exciting science of heliophysics as a broad, coherent discipline that reaches in space from the Earth’s troposphere to the depths of the Sun, and in time from the formation of the solar system to the distant future. For more details see 'Read More'. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the 2021 Heliophysics Summer School may be held in a virtual format.

Website: https://cpaess.ucar.edu/heliophysics/summer-school/recruitment-announcement(external link)

Deadline for Applications: January 22, 2021

NCAR Explorer Series Event - Find out about Student opportunities at NCAR (Opportunity: Open)

By: miker  on: Sun., Nov. 15, 2020 11:16 PM EST  (212 Reads)
For students interested in doing scientific research in the atmospheric sciences, solar and space physics, engineering, social sciences, or computer sciences the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) is holding an NCAR Explorer Series Student Opportunities event on Wednesday, November 18 from 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm (MT). During the event, a panel of educational program leads, an NCAR scientist, and a student internship participant will talk about internships, workshops, and fellowships for students in all stages of their academic careers, from undergraduate through early career.
Please note the registration link below and the request to register by the end of the day on Monday, November 16th : https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdzG7l3f7XCMgBK3nsfYkhFVuCEYDP6LYLnNacau8wJv8UQVw/viewform(external link)
Space@VT doctoral graduate Dong Lin has pointed out that NCAR hosts a program that makes it possible for graduate students to visit for periods ranging from a few months to a full year. In the words of the program announcement: 'NCAR's Advanced Study Program's Graduate Student (GVP) Fellowship is an excellent way to spend time at NCAR and work on parts of your thesis, or final project equivalent, with guidance from NCAR scientists and engineers. The GVP also is an opportunity to develop research collaborations at NCAR and to participate in professional development workshops and seminars.' The program website is https://asp.ucar.edu/graduate-visitors/graduate-visitor-program(external link)
Dong, now an ASP Postdoctoral Fellow at High Altitude Observatory, has offered to answer questions about the program and further opportunities. Application deadline: November 15, 2020

Go to the Student News Archive.