Radio NZ: Space scientist Sir Ian Axford dies

New Zealand scientist Sir Ian Axford has died aged 77.

He worked on space probes, and was an expert on comets and cosmic rays.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

“Sir Ian worked on many American and European space probes, such as Voyager and Giotto, designing robot craft and calculating orbits.

“He was an expert on comets and cosmic rays, and was convinced that life exists elsewhere in the universe – which he said was the normal view in astrophysics.

“Born in Dannevirke, Sir Ian was educated at Napier Boys High, and the Universities of Canterbury, Manchester and Cambridge, where he took his PhD in 1960.”