Ben Bussey

Ben Bussey, PhD.
Senior Exploration Scientist, Lunar Discovery Exploration Program, NASA Science Mission Directorate

Dr. Bussey is a planetary scientist who is currently the Senior Exploration Scientist in NASA’s Lunar Discovery and Exploration Program at NASA headquarters. He earned a BA in Physics from Oxford University and a Ph.D. in Planetary Geology at University College London before moving to the United States. He gained both science and mission experience while working at the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Houston, the European Space Agency, Northwestern University and the University of Hawaii, before joining the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory where he was the Group Supervisor of the planetary exploration group.

Bussey’s research concentrates on the remote sensing of the surfaces of planets, particularly the Moon. He has a specific interest in the lunar poles, producing the first quantitative illumination maps of the polar regions. He co-authored the Clementine Atlas of the Moon, the first atlas to map both the lunar near side and far side in a systematic manner.

Dr. Bussey is the Senior Exploration Scientist in the Lunar Discovery and Exploration Program in NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. Before that he was the Chief Exploration Scientist in NASA’s Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate. Prior to his positions at NASA headquarters he was Principal Investigator of the NASA VORTICES SSERVI team and before that of a NASA Lunar Science Institute team that considered the exploration and scientific potential of the lunar poles. He was the Principal Investigator of the Mini-RF radar instrument on NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, and Deputy Principal Investigator of the Mini-RF radar instrument on India’s Chandrayaan-1 mission. These instruments acquired the first radar data of the lunar poles and farside.

He enjoys planetary analog field work and has been fortunate to have twice been part of the Antarctic Search for Meteorites expedition to recover meteorites from the Antarctic glaciers.