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(Was Observatory Project Scientist)

Mark Clampin

Dr. Mark Clampin loves talking about the James Webb Space Telescope and has done so at many meetings for scientific, technical and general audiences. He was the Webb telescope Observatory Project Scientist and worked in the Exoplanets and Stellar Astrophysics Laboratory at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md until 2015. Currently Clampin is the Deputy Director, Sciences and Exploration Directorate at NASA Goddard.

His research interests include:

  • Formations and Evolution of planetary systems
  • Direct imaging of Exoplanets
  • Astronomical Instrumentation
    - Flight detector systems
    - Coronagraphs
  • Stellar Populations

Clampin is currently working on a number of projects, including the James Webb Space Telescope. He is the  Principal Investigator of the Extrasolar Planetary Imaging Coronagraph (EPIC) Discovery Mission Concept and of the Transit Characterization Explorer (TRACER), a SMEX mission concept. Dr Clampin was a  Co-Investigator and Detector Scientist for Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) science team; and he is a Principal Investigator and Co-Investigator on the Hubble Space Telescope, Spitzer and ground-based investigations of debris disks.

Prior to joining the Webb telescope project, Clampin was a member of the science staff at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI), Baltimore, Md. where he served  as an Instrument Scientist for the Hubble Space Telescope instrument Wide-Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2), and the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS). He served as the Advanced Camera for Surveys Group manager from its inception to the completion of orbital verification of the instrument.

Clampin received a Ph.D. in Physics in 1986 from the University of Saint Andrews, St. Andrews, in Fife, Scotland. In 1982 he received a B.S. in Physics from University of London, England.

For more information on Dr. Clampin and select publications, visit:

For more information on the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS):

For more information on the Extrasolar Planetary Imaging Coronagraph (EPIC) Discovery Mission Concept:

For more information on the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS):

For more information on the WFPC2, please visit:

We did a Tweet-chat on exoplanets with Dr. Mark Clampin.