Dr. Ir. Jurgen Vanhamel
KU Leuven, Belgium
Dr. Ir. Jurgen Vanhamel is working as an assistant professor at the Space Systems Engineering section of the Space Department at Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), the Netherlands. Additionally, he is linked to the Electronic Circuits and Systems group at KU Leuven (Belgium). Jurgen has a BSc in mathematics, physics and economics. Furthermore, he obtained a MSc in electrical engineering and a PhD in engineering technology. He also owns a degree in avionics and spacionics design engineering.
He teaches courses such as telecommunication, space engineering, remote sensing and space electronics. He guides master thesis students and PhD candidates. Additionally, he is a coach at KU Leuven for the Aether-project in which students design a dedicated re-entry cubesat, able to return samples from the ISS and other platforms.
Jurgen started his career at Belgian Defense as a civil professor. He taught courses related to electronics, avionics, digital electronics, instrument landing systems, transceivers and radars. Subsequently, he changed to the Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BISA) in Brussels (Belgium) where he worked on ESA missions. He co-developed the sweeping Langmuir probe for the PICASSO mission. Consequently, he became a system engineer for the ALTIUS-mission (Atmospheric Limb Tracker for the Investigation of the Upcoming Stratosphere). As a next step, he became the programme manager for the VenSpec-H instrument (Venus Spectrometer with High resolution) in the EnVision mission. In October 2021, he took up the position of assistant professor at TU Delft and KU Leuven.
His current research is linked to the investigation of the Earth’s atmosphere in a broad sense, but specifically linked to the detection of atmospheric compositions and climate related pollutants. Therefore, the design and improvement of Radio-Frequency (RF) driving systems used in Acousto-Optics which are implemented in optical setups, is a main focus in his research. These devices are used in novel ground and space-based remote sensing applications. He co-developed instruments able to integrate these setups in the frame of atmospheric monitoring. Jurgen focusses on developing instruments for remote sensing on the one hand, and research related to the dynamics and change of the ionosphere (space weather in general) on the other hand. Currently, he is researching specific setups for monitoring chemical compositions and Acousto-Optical devices.