sci21013 — Announcement
Introduction of New ESA Hubble & Webb Mission Manager
29 December 2021
-By Paule Sonnentrucker-
New ESA Hubble and Webb Mission Manager: Paule Sonnentrucker
I am a French astronomer, a science operation scientist and now Mission Manager with the European Space Agency. After graduating from Strasbourg Observatory (France) in 2000, I started my professional career at the Johns Hopkins University (JHU, USA) first as a postdoctoral fellow in the Far-Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) team, and then as a member of the JHU research staff, until I joined the ESA/Hubble team at STScI in mid-2010.
My research aims at understanding the molecular Universe with a particular emphasis on identifying the contents (gas-phase and ices), and constraining the evolution of diffuse molecular clouds and star-forming regions. I use multi-wavelength spectroscopy from space and the ground. I am thrilled at the prospect of exploiting Webb’s capabilities to study the physics and chemistry of these systems. Like many of you, I am looking forward to capitalising on the unique complementarity of Hubble and Webb that can be used to study the interplay between Photon Dominated Regions and proto-stellar outflows, as they shape the life cycle of matter in the Interstellar medium.
At STScI, I have been supporting science operations for Hubble within the ESA team, first as an ESA/AURA astronomer, and since 2015 as an ESA staff member. Through my instrument scientist work in the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) and Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) instruments teams, I performed or led all major science operations activities including instrument performance and calibration duties, community user support and, for COS, the critical moves of science operations to new lifetime positions while continuing to pursue independent research. Since 2018, as acting Mission Manager for ESA/Hubble, my job has been to interface with STScI on all contractual and financial aspects of the mission and to take care of the team supporting HST science operations at STScI on behalf of ESA, especially as the pandemic wrought havoc around the world and forced us all to adapt to the new “working from home” reality. In my new role, I am looking forward to providing a smooth incorporation of the Webb team into science operations at STScI. I am thrilled at the opportunity to shape one new ESA team with excellent, dedicated people in this multi-mission and fast-changing landscape where hybrid work is becoming our way forward. Finally, I look forward to the opportunity to expand my role as facilitator of the great science performed in Europe for all things financial by expanding my interfacing with STScI to the two great observatories that Hubble and Webb are. I, for one, cannot wait to read about our next discoveries, be they with Hubble, Webb or both!
ESA/HST & ESA/JWST Project Scientist
STScI Baltimore, USA
About the Announcement