For me, there’s nothing more thrilling than discovering something new about our universe. I’ve had a hands-on role on projects for both NASA and ESA, and my research with the University of Leicester into white dwarves is recognised globally. Today we know more about space than ever before, yet we’re only just scratching the surface.

I grew up around the time the Apollo astronauts were landing on the moon, and that’s what first got me interested in becoming a space scientist. After I completed my degree in Physics, I decided to pursue a PhD here at Leicester, which is renowned for its space research and created the National Space Centre.

During my PhD, the thing that really got me excited was being able to build the instruments that scientists actually use when they’re up in space. Seeing your creations work for the first time in space is just the best feeling in the world!

My research here has led me to some great things. As well as becoming the President of the Royal Astronomical Society, my academic role allows me to pass on my knowledge to new generations of students.

There’s nothing more exciting than being a scientist. You learn something new every day, and you find out things that nobody else ever knew existed. I would still quite like to be an astronaut though!