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Dr. Lucas Kamp died of cancer on Sunday, March 30, 2014. He had been ill for approximately 1 year, however he continued his work planning for MIRO Rosetta cometary observations and analyzing Galileo NIMS data right up until his death.
Lucas was born on March 15, 1946 in Kingston-on-Thames, England, U.K. He was raised in the Netherlands, and spoke four languages, English, Dutch, German, and French.
Dr. Kamp received an A.B. in Astrophysical Sciences from Princeton University in 1968. Following that degree he received a Masters degree in 1970 and a Ph.D.in 1972 from the University of Chicago, both in Astronomy and Astrophysics.
From 1972-1974, Dr. Kamp was an NRC Research Affiliate at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD. His work consisted of research in model stellar atmospheres, spectroscopy, and radiative transfer, specializing in non-LTE effects in early-type stars.
From 1974 – 1980, he was an Assistant Professor of Astronomy at Boston University. There he taught and worked on the analyses of IUE satellite data. Dr. Kamp joined JPL/Caltech in January 1981 where he remained up until his death. During this time he spent two sabbaticals at Oxford University where he and Professor Fred Taylor modelled near-infrared thermal emission emanating from Venus’s deep atmosphere and surface. During his time at JPL, he worked on numerous spacecraft projects including Voyager, Galileo, Viking orbiter, EPOXI, Rosetta and JUNO. He was a major contributor to the NIMS effort, particularly in the geometric and photometric aspects of NIMS hyperspectral image cubes.
Dr. Kamp was an author or co-author of 190 scientific publications. He received awards from NASA for his work on Cassini, Galileo, Rosetta and EPOXI. He received the NASA Individual Exceptional Service Medal for contributions to Galileo NIMS data processing in October 2003.
Prepared by S. Gulkis, B. Carlson, R. Lopes
Obituary written by: S. Gulkis, B. Carlson, R. Lopes
BAAS Citation: BAAS, 2014, 46, 019