Below is a listing of the members of the Geospace group at the Space Sciences Lab. The groups Associate Director is Thomas Immel.
Tai PhanSenior Fellow
Tai Phan received his Ph.D. from Dartmouth College in 1991. He worked at the Max-Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Germany and at the National research Council of Canada before joining the Space Sciences Laboratory at UC Berkeley, where he is currently a Senior Fellow. His research interests include solar wind interaction with Earth’s magnetosphere, and the magnetic reconnection process throughout the plasma universe. He is an author and co-author of more than 240 publications, including 6 Nature Letters and more than 15 Physical Review Letters. He reported the first spacecraft detections of bi-directional plasma jets due to magnetic reconnection [Nature, 2000]. He led the discovery of a reconnection X-line extending more than 390 Earth radii in the solar wind [Nature, 2006]. Recently he reported a new type of fast magnetic reconnection involving only electrons, which occurs in turbulent plasmas [Nature, 2018]. He leads an Inter-Disciplinary Science team of NASA’s Magnetopsheric Multi-Scale mission to study reconnection in the near-Earth space. He is a co-investigator of the NASA THEMIS and Parker Solar Probe missions. He served as a member the US National Academies Solar and Space Physics Decadal Survey 2013. He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union. He has trained a number of undergraduate and graduate students at Berkeley to do research, give presentations at international meetings, and publish first-author papers. He is always looking for motivated Berkeley undergraduate and graduate students to do fun research in space plasma physics.