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NASA Rosetta scientist Claudia Alexander dies aged 56


NASA Rosetta scientist Claudia Alexander dies aged 56


Claudia Alexander, one of the leading scientists in the Rosetta mission, has died at the age of 56. Claudia headed the NASA contribution to the ESA mission to a comet, and was recognised as a gifted scientist and a superb communicator.

Euronews producer Jeremy Wilks interviewed her during a Rosetta science working team meeting at ESA’s technology base in the Netherlands on 5 March 2015. Claudia was a friendly and willing contributor to Euronews’ Space series, and had a great talent for explaining the complexities of our solar system in language everyone could understand.

Claudia enjoyed being challenged by the science results of the missions she worked on, and she begins this interview by discussing the surprising water results from Rosetta’s instruments, which revealed that the water on comet 67P is not the same as the water on planet Earth.

Born in Canada but raised in the US, she worked for the United States Geological Survey and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. She was the last project manager of NASA’s Galileo mission to Jupiter before working on Rosetta. She died of breast cancer in Arcadia, California.

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