Dr. Josh Bandfield's research focused on the processes that have formed the terrestrial planets, asteroids, and Earth analogs. He used infrared and visible spectral and imaging data returned from orbiting spacecraft and landers to determine the mineralogical, thermophysical, and morphological properties of planetary surfaces. Josh was involved with spacecraft planning, operations, and science activities for martian, lunar, and asteroid missions from 1995 to 2019. He was a geologist by training and liked rocks.
Josh passed away unexpectedly mid-June 2019 and we are beyond saddened for the loss to our space community. He worked as a Senior Research Scientist with Space Science Institute since 2013. Josh was an expert in using thermal infrared and visible spectral and imaging data to determine the mineralogical, thermophysical, and morphological properties of planetary surfaces. He authored/co-authored over 90 peer-reviewed and 240 non-refereed articles on planetary geology, spectroscopic remote sensing, radiative transfer, and thermal modeling. He developed observation and data analysis strategies for the collection and derivation of surface properties from thermal infrared observations. His spacecraft operational experience includes OSIRIS-REx, 2001 Mars Odyssey, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, Mars Global Surveyor, and Mars Exploration Rovers. He designed, implemented, and validated calibration and data processing strategies for the Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES), Thermal Emission Imaging System (TES), Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometer (mini-TES), MCS, Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment (DLRE), and Planetary Fourier Spectrometer (PFS) investigations. Josh served as a co-investigator on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiterís Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment and the 2001 Mars Odyssey THEMIS instruments. He also served as a participating scientist on several missions, including NASAís OSIRIS-REx and the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Josh was also active in public outreach, and helped many students and early career scientists.
Please consider honoring Josh with a donation to the Ridge to Rivers trail system in Boise, Idaho. Josh was an avid trail runner, mountain biker, and admirer of wildflowers. These trails brought him a great deal of enjoyment while he lived in Boise.