4800 Oak Grove Drive
Dr. Linda J. Spilker is a JPL Fellow, Senior Research Scientist and planetary scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory who has participated in NASA and international planetary missions for over 45 years. She is currently serving as the Voyager Project Scientist. Her mission roles have grown to encompass mission leadership as well as design, planning, operation and scientific data analysis. Prior to Voyager, Spilker was the Cassini Project Scientist, leading a team of over 300 international scientists to maximize the scientific return of the Cassini mission within cost and schedule. She worked in a science role on the Cassini project for 30 years, and was a Co-I with the Cassini Composite Infrared Spectrometer (CIRS) team. She led the CIRS ring team focusing on thermal infrared studies and modeling of Saturn’s rings to address questions of the rings’ origin and evolution. She led the science preparation of two Cassini Senior Review Proposals, in 2012 and 2014, both of which received Excellent ratings. She also participated in a 2023 Voyager Senior Review proposal.
Prior to Cassini, Spilker previously worked on Voyager for 12 years, as the Experiment Representative (science liaison to the project) with the Infrared Radiometer and Spectrometer (IRIS) team and as a science associate with the Photopolarimeter Team. Prior to that she was a research assistant (as L. Horn) in the Geology Department at Caltech studying the lead and bismuth distribution in meteorite samples, with a focus on carbonaceous chondrites and early solar system history and formation.
Spilker is a member of the Outer Planets Assessment Group (OPAG) Steering Committee after serving for five years as OPAG Vice-Chair, then Co-Chair. She was previously the Chair for the Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS). She was an author or coauthor on a number of white papers for the 2023 Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey. She has also participated on the Advisory Council for Planetary Data System Ring-Moon Systems Node since 1990, providing input on archiving data from Cassini and other planetary missions.
Over the years Spilker has mentored numerous postdocs, graduate students and summer students as well as young scientists at JPL and other institutions. She is committed to transferring knowledge and training future generations.
Jet Propulsion Laboratory (1977-present)
1. Ip, W.-H., Spilker, L., and Lebreton, J.-P. 2023. History of Titan Exploration, In R. Lopes (Eds.), Titan After Cassini-Huygens: COSPAR, accepted.
2. Spilker, L., Buffington, B., Smith, J., Strange, N., Buratti, B., Ray, T., Bellerose, J., Maize, E., Webster, J. 2023. The Road to the Grand Finale. In K. Baines, M. Flasar, N. Krupp, & T. Stallard (Eds.), Saturn: The Grand Finale (Cambridge Planetary Science), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, accepted.
3. Lasue, J., … Spilker, L., 2023. Chapter 4, “From Planetary Exploration Goals to Technology Requirements”, Planetary Exploration: Horizons 2061, A Long-Term Perspective for Planetary Exploration, Elsevier, pp.177-248, https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-323-90226-7.00005-2
4. Royer, A. Hendrix, J. Elliott, L. Esposito, C. Howett, L. Spilker. Helene’s surface properties from photometric multi-wavelength analysis, 2023. Icarus, Vol. 392, 177-248. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2022.115376
5. Probst, A., Spilker, L., Hofstadter, M., Spilker, T., Atkinson, D., Probst, L., Mousis, O, and Simon, A. 2022. VPIRE: A tool aiding the design for entry probe missions. Planetary Science Journal (PSJ), 3, 98. https://doi.org/10.3847/PSJ/ac6022
6. Rymer, A. …Spilker, L., 2021. Neptune Odyssey: A Flagship Concept for the Exploration of the Neptune–Triton System. Planetary Science Journal, 2. 184-199. https://doi.org/10.3847/PSJ/abf654
7. Cable, M. … Spilker, L., 2021. The Science Case for a Return to Enceladus. Planetary Science Journal. 2. 132-143. https://doi.org/10.3847/PSJ/abfb7a
8. MacKenzie, S., …Spilker, L. 2021. The Enceladus Orbilander Mission Concept: Balancing Return and Resources in the Search for Life. Planetary Science Journal, 2. 77-94. https://doi.org/10.3847/PSJ/abe4da
9. Flandes, A., Garcia-Reyes, A., Spilker, L. 2020. Ray tracing modeling of Saturn’s main rings. Icarus, Vol. 354, 114063, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2020.114063
10. Spilker, L., Cassini-Huygens Exploration of the Saturn system: thirteen years of discovery. 2019. Science, Vol. 364, Issue 6445, 1046-1051, DOI: 10.1126/science.aat3760.
11. Spilker, L. J., 2019. Cassini's Final Year at Saturn: Science Highlights and Discoveries. Geophysical Research Letters, 46, 11, 5754-5758. https://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2018gl080848.
12. Tiscareno, M., Nicholson, P., Cuzzi, J., Spilker, L., … 2019. Remote sensing of Saturn’s rings during Cassini’s ring-grazing orbits and Grand Finale. Science, 364, Issue 6445, DOI: 10.1126/science.aau1017
13. Flandes, A., Garcia, A., Spilker, L., Deau., E. 2018. Ray-tracing thermal modeling of Saturn’s main rings. Icarus, 312, 157-171, (2018). http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2018.04.023.
14. Spilker, L. The Scientific Achievements of the Cassini-Huygens mission. 2018. Serendipities in the Solar System and Beyond. ASP Conference Series, Vol. 513, proceedings of a conference held 10-13 July 2017 at National Central University, Taiwan. Edited by Chung-Ming Ko, Chan-Kao Chang, and Po-Chieh Yu. San Francisco: Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 131- 150.
15. Dougherty, M. and Spilker, L. 2018. Review of Saturn’s icy moons following the Cassini mission. IOP Reports on Progress in Physics, Vol. 81, No. 6, 1-20. DOI: 10.1088/1361-6633/aabdfb
16. Spilker, L., Ferrari, C., Altobello, N., Pilorz, S., & Morishima, R. 2018. Thermal Properties of Rings and Ring Particles. In M. Tiscareno & C. Muray (Eds.), Planetary Ring Systems: Properties, Structure, and Evolution (Cambridge Planetary Science, pp. 399-433). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Doi: 10.1017/9781316286791.015
17. Morishima, R.; Spilker, L.; Brooks, S.; Deau, E.; Pilorz, S. 2016. Incomplete cooling down of Saturn's A ring at solar equinox: Implication for seasonal thermal inertia and internal structure of ring particles. Icarus, Volume 279, 2-19. Doi: 10.1016/j.icarus.2015.06.025
18. Altobelli, N.; Lopez-Paz, D,; Pilorz, S.; Spilker, L..; Morishima, R.; Brooks, S.; Leyrat, C.; Deau, E.; Edgington, S.; Flandes, A. 2014. Two numerical models designed to reproduce Saturn ring temperatures as measured by Cassini-CIRS. 2014. Icarus, Volume 238, 205-220.
19. Morishima, R., Spilker, L., Turner, N., 2014. Azimuthal temperature modulations of Saturn's A ring caused by self-gravity wakes. Icarus 228, 247-229.
20. Spilker, L., C. Ferrari, R. Morishima. Saturn’s ring temperatures at equinox. 2013, Icarus 226, 316-322.
21. Morishima, R., Spilker, L., Edgington, S. Regolith grain sizes of Saturn's rings inferred from Cassini-CIRS far-infrared spectra. Icarus, Volume 222, Issue 2, 888-899.
22. Morishima, R., Spilker, L., Ohtsuki, Keiji. A multilayer model for thermal infrared emission of Saturn's rings III: Thermal inertia inferred from Cassini CIRS. 2011, Icarus, Volume 215, Issue 1, 107-127.
23. Morishima, R., L. Spilker, H. Salo, K. Ohtsuki, N. Altobelli, S. Pilorz. A multilayer model for thermal infrared emission of Saturn's rings II: Albedo, spins, and vertical mixing of rings. 2010, Icarus, Volume 210, Issue 1, 330-345.
24. Flandes, A., Spilker, L., R. Morishima, S. Pilorz, C. Leyrat, N. Altobelli, S. Brooks, S. Edgington, Brightness properties of Saturn's rings with decreasing solar elevation, 2010, Planetary and Space Science, Volume 58, Issue 13, 1758 - 1765.
25. Cuzzi, J.N., J. A. Burns, S. Charnoz, R. N. Clark, J. E. Colwell, L. Dones, L. W. Esposito, G. Filacchione, R. G. French, M. M. Hedman, S. Kempf, E. A. Marouf, C. D. Murray, P. D. Nicholson, C. C. Porco, J. Schmidt, M. R. Showalter, L. Spilker, J. N. Spitale, R. Srama, M. Sremčević, M. S. Tiscareno, J. Weiss. An Evolving View of Saturn's Dynamic Rings. 2010. Science, Volume 327, 1470 -
26. Cuzzi, J, R. Clark, G. Filacchione, R. French, R. Johnson, E. Marouf, Spilker. Ring Particle Composition and Size Distribution, 2009, in M. Dougherty, L. Esposito and T. Krimigis, eds., Saturn from Cassini-Huygens, Dordrecht, Springer, ISBN 978-1-4020-9216-9, 459 - 509.
27. Altobelli, N., L. Spilker, C. Leyrat, S. Pilorz, S. Edgington, A. Flandes, Thermal phase curves observed in Saturn's main rings by Cassini CIRS. Vol. 36, L10105, 2009.
28. Ferrari, C., Brooks S., Edgington S., Leyrat C., Pilorz S. and Spilker L., Structure of self-gravity wakes in Saturn's A ring as measured by Cassini CIRS, 2009, Icarus, Volume 199, Issue 1, 145-153.
29. Spilker, L. Saturn Revolution. 2008. Astronomy 36, No. 10, 34 - 39.
30. Altobelli, N., L. Spilker, C. Leyrat, S. Pilorz, 2008. Thermal observations of Saturn's main rings by Cassini CIRS: Phase, emission and solar elevation dependence, Planetary and Space Science, 56, 134-146.
31. Leyrat, C., L. Spilker, N. Altobelli, S. Pilorz, C. Ferrari, 2008. Infrared observations of Saturn's rings by Cassini CIRS : Phase angle and local time dependence, Planetary and Space Science, 56 (2008) 117-133.
32. Altobelli, N., L. Spilker, S. Pilorz, S. Brooks, S. Edgington, B. Wallis, M. Flasar, 2007. C ring fine structures revealed in the thermal infrared, Icarus, 191, 691-701.
33. Spilker, L. J., S. H. Pilorz, B. D. Wallis, J. C. Pearl, J. N. Cuzzi, S. M. Brooks, N. Altobelli, S. G. Edgington, M. Showalter, F. M. Flasar, C. Ferrari, C. Leyrat, 2006. Cassini Thermal Observations of Saturn's main rings: Implications for particle rotation and vertical mixing, Planetary and Space Science, 54, Issue 12, 1167-1176.
34. Spilker, L., S. Pilorz, B. Wallis, S. Edgington, S. Brooks, J. Pearl, J., F. Flasar, 2005. Cassini CIRS Observations of a Roll-off in Saturn Ring Spectra at Submillimeter Wavelengths. Earth, Moon and Planets, Volume 96, Issue 3-4, 149-163.
35. Spilker, L.J., S. Pilorz, A.L. Lane, R.M. Nelson B. Pollard, and C. T. Russell. 2004. Saturn A ring surface mass densities from spiral density wave dispersion behavior. Icarus 171, 372 - 390.