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flag Prof. John M. C. Plane,
University of East Anglia (now at University of Leeds), UK

Last updated: October 2007
E-Mail: J.M.C.Plane [at]

Brief Biographical Information:

1984 - 1985 PhD in Physical Chemistry at the University of Cambridge.
1985 - 1991 Associate Professor at the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, University of Miami, Florida, USA.
1994 - 2007 Reader at the School of Environmental Science of the University of East Anglia, UK.
1999 - 2007 Professor of Environmental Science at the School of Environmental Science of the University of East Anglia, UK.
2006 - present Professor in atmospheric chemistry at the University of Leeds, U.K.


The aeronomy of meteoric metals in the upper meosphere/lower thermosphere region. The study of atmospheric chemistry by long-path differential optical absorption spectroscopy in the UV/Visible. Experimental gas kinetics using two-laser pulse/probe and fast flow tube techniques, with a focus on the reactions of metallic species over extreme temperature ranges. The application of recombination reaction rate theory to reactions of metal atoms and ions. Ab initio calculations of the properties of neutral and ionic metallic species, and associated reaction potential energy surfaces.

Prof. Plane also actively participates in the UK Astrobiology Forum and network.

Research on Leonid MAC:

High-resolution slit-spectroscopy of meteor trains and airglow.

This work led to the discovery that iron oxyde (FeO) "orange arc" emission is the main source of visible luminosity in persistent trains, and to the first modelling effort attempting to describe the complex dynamics of persistent trains. Read more about it here.

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