Dr. James Mason is a research scientist and aerospace engineer at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory where he is the Principal Investigator of NASA's recently awarded Sun Coronal Ejection Tracker (SunCET) mission. He has been involved in over 20 small satellite missions from various NASA centers as well as universities around the country and world, including India, Australia, Singapore, Taiwan, and France. These missions have a variety of focuses: taking pictures of massive explosions in the Sun's atmosphere, observing similar explosions on other stars, measuring ocean salinity for Jupiter's moon Europa, developing new antenna technologies for small satellites in deep space, and more. Dr. Mason spends about half of his time doing scientific data analysis of the observations returned from missions like these, and the other half leading and developing such missions with the teams and in the lab. Dr. Mason grew up just outside the San Francisco bay area, received his Bachelor's degree in Astrophysics from the University of California Santa Cruz in 2009, and his Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering Sciences from the University of Colorado Boulder in 2016.
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