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Raymond Francis

Job Title
Thesis

Thesis

Thesis Description

I’m working to develop vision systems to enhance planetary exploration – in particular, to increase the science return and productivity of missions with the use of advanced lidar and photographic vision systems and increased robotic autonomy.  In particular, I’m working on automated image interpretation systems that allow automatic interpretation of geological scenes, and the extraction of wind information from atmospheric images.   Overall, the intent is to develop versatile systems that can be used in multiple environments, to provide valuable elements of upcoming missions in planetary exploration.  As part of that preparation, I also participate in the design, development, and operation of terrestrial analogue missions, developing techniques and procedures for exploration in planetary-analogue environments here on Earth.  I apply these approaches and test the vision algorithms on data from the Mars Science Laboratory mission, on which I’m a science team collaborator.

Publications

Publications

Francis, R.; Moores, J.; McIsaac, K.; Choi, D.; Osinski, G.: Observations of wind direction by automated analysis of images from Mars and the MSL rover, in Acta Astronautica. Volume 94, Issue 2, February 2014, Pages 776-783, ISSN 0094-5765, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actaastro.2013.09.011

Moores, J.; Francis, R.; Mader, M.; Osinski, G.; Barfoot, T.; Barry, N.; Basic, G.; Battler, M.; Beauchamp, M.; Blain, S.; Bondy, M.; Capitan, R.; Chanou, A.; Clayton, J.; Cloutis, E.; Daly, M.; Dickinson, C.; Dong, H.; Flemming, R.; Furgale, P.; Gammel, J.; Ghafoor, N.; Hussein, M.; Grieve, R.; Henry, H.; Jasiobedzki, P.; Lambert, A.; Leung, K.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; McManus, C.; Neish, C.; Ng, H.; Ozaruk, A.; Pickersgill, A.; Preston, L.; Redman, D.; Sapers, H.; Shankar, B.; Singleton, A.; Souders, K.; Stenning, B.; Stooke, P.; Sylvester, P.: A mission control architecture for robotic lunar sample return as field tested in an analogue deployment to the Sudbury impact structure, Advances in Space Research, available online 16 May 2012, 10.1016/j.asr.2012.05.008

Francis, R.; Vincent, R.; Noël J.; Tremblay, P.; Desjardins, D.; Cushley, A.; Wallace, M.: The Flying Laboratory for the Observation of ADS-B Transmissions, International Journal of Navigation and Observation, vol. 2011, article 973656, 2011.

Francis, R.: Detection of Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast signals using stratospheric and orbital platforms, Master’s thesis, Royal Military College of Canada, May 2010

Recent Abstracts

Conference papers and long-form reviewed abstracts

Francis, R.; Moores, J.; Maki, J.; Choi, D.; McCullough, E.; and the MSL Science Team: Constraints on atmospheric water vapour and circulation at Gale Crater from the MSL Atmospheric Monitoring Campaign (abstract #1717), in 44th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 18-22 March 2013

McCullough, E.; Moores J.; Francis, R. and the MSL Science Team: Inferences of Martian atmospheric dust and water ice content derived from radiative transfer models of passive MSL observations by MastCam (abstract #1288), in 44th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 18-22 March 2013

Osinski, G.; Abou-Aly, S.; Francis, R.; Hansen, J.; Marion, C.; Pickersgill, A.; Tornabene, L.: The Prince Albert structure, Northwest Territories, Canada: A new 28-km diameter complex impact structure (abstract #2099), in 44th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 18-22 March 2013

Moores J.; Haberle, R.; Lemmon, M.; Bean, K.; Mischna, M. de la Torre Juarez, M.; Newman, C.; Calef, F.; Cantor, B.; Vasavada, A.; Maki, J.; Martin-Torres, J.; Zorzano, M.-P.; Francis, R.; McCullough, E.; the MSL Science Team and the MSL Engineering Camera Team: Constraints on atmospheric water vapour and circulation at Gale Crater from the MSL Atmospheric Monitoring Campaign (abstract #1548), in 44th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 18-22 March 2013

Francis, R.; Moores, J.; McIsaac, K.; Choi, D.; Osinski, G.: Observations of wind direction by automated analysis of images from Mars and the MSL rover, in 63rd International Astronautical Congress, Naples, Italy, 1-5 October 2012

Mader, M.; Osinski, G.; Shankar, B.; Tornabene, L.; Pickersgill, A.; Marion, C.; Barfoot, T.; Beauchamp, M.; Francis, R.; Ghafoor, N.; McCullough, E.; Moores, J.; Preston, L. and the ILSR team: Baseline scientific requirements for a lunar robotic precursor mission: lessons learned from analogue missions at the Mistastin (Kamestastin) Lake impact structure, Canada, in 63rd International Astronautical Congress, Naples, Italy, 1-5 October 2012

Stenning, B.; Osinski, G.; Barfoot, T.; Basic, G.; Beauchamp, M.; Daly, M.; Francis, R.; Gammell, J.; Ghafoor, N.; Jasiobedzki, P.; Lambert, A.; Leung, K.; Mader, M.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; McManus, C.; Moores, J.; Preston, L.: Planetary surface exploration using a network of reusable paths: a paradigm for parallel science investigations, in International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, and Automation in Space, Turin, Italy, 4-6 September 2012

Francis, R.; Moores, J.; Osinski, G.: A mission control architecture for joint human and robotic lunar exploration missions, as tested in terrestrial analogue missions, in Global Space Exploration Conference, Washington, DC, 22-24 May 2012

Francis, R.; Osinski, G.; Moores, J.; Barfoot, T.; and the ILSR Team.: Co-operative human-robotic exploration of lunar analogue sites (abstract #1996), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Kerrigan, M.; Shankar, B.; Marion, C.; Francis, R.; Pickersgill, A.; Capitan, R.; Osinski, G.; and the ILSR Team.: Real-time Mission Control Tracking of Astronaut Positions during Analogue Missions (abstract #2756), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Marion, C.; Osinski, G.; Abou-Aly, S.; Antonenko, I.; Barfoot, T.; Barry, N.; Bassi, A.; Battler, M.; Beauchamp, M.; Bondy, M.; Blain, S.; Capitan, R.; Cloutis, E.; Cupelli, L.; Chanou, A.; Clayton, J.; Daly, M.; Dong, H.; Ferrière, L.; Flemming, R.; Flynn, L.; Francis, R.; Furgale, P.; Gammell, J.; Garbino, A.; Ghafoor, N.; Grieve, R.; Hodges, K.; Hussein, M.; Jasiobedzki, P.; Jolliff, B.; Kerrigan, M.; Lambert, A.; Leung, K.; Mader, M.; McCullough, E.; McManus, C.; Moores, J.; Ng, H.; Otto, C.; Ozaruk, A.; Pickersgill, A.; Pontefract, A.; Preston, L.; Redman, D.; Sapers, H.; Shankar, B.; Shaver, C.; Singleton, A.; Souders, K.; Stenning, B.; Stooke, P.; Sylvester, P.; Tripp, J.; Tornabene, L.; Unrau, T.; Veillette D.; Young, K.; Zanetti, M.: A Series of robotic and human analogue missions in support of lunar sample return (abstract #2333), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

McCullough, E.; Pickersgill, A.; Francis, R.; Bassi, A.; Shankar, B.; Mader, M.; Beauchamp, M.; Osinski, G.; and the KRASH science and operations teams.: Scientific Application of Visual Systems Instrumentation used during Lunar Sample Return Analogue Missions (abstract #2687), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Moores, J.; Francis, R.; Osinski, G.; Mader, M.; McCullough, E.; Preston, L.; Tornabene, L.,  and the KRASH Operations and Science Team.: Surface operations for mission control during analogue human lunar deployments to Mistastin and Barringer impact structures (abstract #1136), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Pickersgill, A.; Osinski, G.; Beauchamp, M.; Marion, C.; Mader, M.; Francis, R.; McCullough, E.; Shankar, B.; Barfoot, T.; Bondy, M.; Chanou, A.; Daly, M.; Dong, H.; Furgale, P.; Gammell, J.; Ghafoor, N.; Hussein, M.; Jasiobedzki, P.; Lambert, A.; Leung, K.; McManus, C.; Ng, H.; Pontefract, A.; Stenning, B.; Tornabene, L.; Tripp, J.; and the ILSR Team.: Scientific Instrumentation for a Lunar Sample Return Analogue Mission (abstract #2657), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Pontefract, A.; Marion, C.; Osinski, G.; Francis, R.; Pickersgill, A.; Tornabene, L.; and the ILSR Team.: Use of Portable XRF and Raman for in situ Analysis in Manned Planetary Investigations.: Lessons Learned from the Kamestastin Lunar Analogue Mission (abstract #2086), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Shankar, B.; Osinski, G.; Abou-Aly, S.; Beauchamp, M.; Blain, S.; Chanou, A.; Clayton, J.; Francis, R.; Kerrigan, M.; Mader, M.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; Moores, J.; Pickersgill, A.; Pontefract, A.; Preston, L.; Tornabene, L.: Lunar Analogue Mission.: Overview of the site selection and traverse planning process for a human sortie mission at the Mistastin Lake Impact Structure, Labrador, Canada (abstract #1143), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Stenning, B.; Osinski, G.; Barfoot, T.; Basic., G.; Beauchamp, M.; Daly, M.; Dong, H.; Francis, R.; Furgale, P.; Gammell, J.; Ghafoor, N.; Jasiobedzki, P.; Lambert, A.; Leung, K.; Mader, M.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; McManus, C.; Moores, J.; Preston, L.: Planetary surface exploration using a network of reusable paths, in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March, 2012

Tornabene, L.; Osinski, G.; Mader, M.; Chanou, A.; Francis, R.; Jolliff, B.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; Pickersgill, A.; Sapers, H.; Souders, K.; Sylvester, P.;Young, K.; Zanetti, M.; and the KRASH Team.: Utility of remote sensing, robotic precursor data and a focused science hypothesis for a follow-on human exploration lunar analogue mission at the Mistastin Lake (Kamestastin) impact structure (abstract #2390), in 43rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 19-23 March 2012

Francis, R.; Noël, J.; Vincent, R.: Orbital monitoring of Automatic Dependent Surveillance — Broadcast (ADS-B) signals for improved air traffic surveillance in remote and oceanic airspace, in 62nd International Astronautical Congress, Cape Town, South Africa, 3-7 October 2011

Henry, H.; Mader, M.; Osinski, G.; Gilbert, A.; Battler, M.; Brown, P.; Chanou, A.; Francis, R.; McCullough, E.; Papadimos, A.; Pontefract, A.; Shankar, B.; Singleton, A.; Thomson, L.; Unrau, T.: Making outreach and education a major component of research institutions.: A Canadian university perspective, in 62nd International Astronautical Congress, Cape Town, South Africa, 3-7 October 2011

Moores, J. E.; Francis, R.; Barfoot, T.; Barry, N.; Basic, G.; Battler, M.; Beauchamp, M.; Blain, S.; Bondy, M.; Capitan, R-D.; Chanou, A.; Clayton, J.; Cloutis, E.; Daly, M.;  Dickinson, C.; Dong, H.; Flemming, R.; Furgale, P.; Gammel, J.; Ghafoor, N.;  Hussein, M.; Grieve, R.; Henry, H.; Jasiobedzki, P.; Lambert, A.; Leung, K.; Mader, M.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; McManus, C.; Neish, C.D.; Ng, H.K.; Ozaruk, A.; Pickersgill, A.; Preston, L.J.; Redman, D.; Sapers, H.; Shankar, B.; Singleton, A.; Souders, K.; Stenning, B.; Stooke, P.; Sylvester, P.; Tornabene, L.; Osinski, G.R.: Mission Operations Design for Lunar Sample Return as field-tested in an Analogue deployment to the Sudbury Impact Structure, in EPSC-DPS Joint Meeting 2011, Nantes, France, 2-7 October 2011

Moores, J. E.; Francis, R.; McCullough, E.; Choi, D.S.; Osinski, G.: Motivation for Atmospheric Measurements of Water Ice using the Mars Science Laboratory Instrument Suite and beyond, in EPSC-DPS Joint Meeting 2011, Nantes, France, 2-7 October 2011

Antonenko, I.; Mader, M.; Osinski, G.; Battler, M.; Beauchamp, M.; Cupelli, L.; Chanou, A.; Francis, R.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; Pickersgill, A.; Preston, L.; Shankar, B.; Unrau, T.; Veillette, D.: Issues of Geo-Focused Situational Awareness in Robotic Planetary Missions.:  Lessons from an Analogue Mission at Mistastin Lake Impact Structure, Labrador, Canada, in 42nd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 7-11 March 2011

Marion, C.; Osinski, G.; Antonenko, I.; Barfoot, T.; Battler, M.; Beauchamp, M.; Cloutis, E.; Cupelli, L.; Chanou, A.; Daly, M.; Ferrière, L.; Flemming, R.; Francis, R.; Ghafoor, N.; Grieve, R.; Hodges, K.; Hussain, M.; Jolliff, B.; Mader, M.; McCullough, E.; Otto, C.; Preston, L.; Redman, D.; Shankar, B.; Singleton, A.; Stooke, P.; Sylvester, P.; Tornabene, L.; Unrau, T.; Veillette, D.: A Lunar Analogue Mission.:  Sample Return to the South Pole-Aitken Basin, in 42nd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 7-11 March 2011

Shankar, B.; Antonenko, I.; Osinski, G.; Mader, M.; Preston, L.; Battler, M.; Beauchamp M.; Chanou, A.; Cupelli, L.; Francis, R.; Marion, C.; McCullough, E.; Pickersgill, A.; Unrau, T.; Veillette, D.: Lunar Analogue Mission.:  Overview of the Site Selection Process at Mistastin Lake Impact Structure, Labrador, Canada, in 42nd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 7-11 March 2011

Vincent-Bonnieu, S.; Minster, O.; Dewandre, T.; Francis, R.; Liggieri, L.; Loglio, G.; Miller, R.; Steinchen, A.; Antoni, M, Clausse, D.; Del Gaudio, L.; Dalmazzone, C.; Karapantsios, T.; Dutschk, V.; Rubio, R.; Picker, G.: FASES.: An instrument for Fundamental and Applied Studies of Emulsion Stability, in Third International Symposium on Physical Sciences in Space, Nara, Japan, 22-26 October 2007

Vincent-Bonnieu, S.; Minster, O.; Dewandre, T.; Francis, R.; Langevin, D.; Adler, M.; Cohen-Addad, S.; Hohler, R.; Vandewalle, N.; Saint-Jalmes, A.; Weaire, D.; Hutzler, S.; Durian, D.; Bellossi, F.; Picker, G.: FOAM.: An instrument for coarsening of aqueous foam, in Third International Symposium on Physical Sciences in Space, Nara, Japan, 22-26 October 2007

Conference presentations with abstract review

Francis, R.; McIsaac, K.; Moores, J.; Choi, D.; Osinski, G.: Observations of wind direction by automated analysis of ground-based cloud imagery: Applications on Earth and Mars, in Canadian Space Summit 2012, London, Ontario, 14-16 November 2012

Marion, C.; Osinski, G.; Pickersgill, A; Francis, R.; Hansen, J.; Abou-Aly, S.: Prince Albert: A newly discovered impact structure on Victoria Island, Canadian high arctic, in Canadian Space Summit 2012, London, Ontario, 14-16 November 2012

McCullough, E.; Moores, J.; Francis, R.: Proposed observations of water ice and dust in the martian lower atmosphere at Gale crater, in Canadian Space Summit 2012, London, Ontario, 14-16 November 2012

Francis, R.; McIsaac, K.; Moores, J.; Osinski, G.; Natural scene segmentation to support planetary science, in 12th Space Vision and Advanced Robotics Workshop, Brampton, Ontario, 6 June 2012

Francis, R.; Moores, J.; McIsaac, K.; Choi, D.: Observations of wind direction on Mars by automated analysis of images from surface missions, in 2012 Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society Congress, Montreal, 29 May – 1 June, 2012

Francis, R.; Moores, J.; Osinski, G.; and the ILSR Team.: Analogue mission operations in support of future lunar sample return missions, in Canadian Space Summit 2011, Calgary, Alberta, 23-25 November 2011

Francis, R.; Jasiobedzki, P.; McIsaac, K.; Osinski, G.: Automatic selection of instrument sampling locations in 3D imagery, in 11th Space Vision and Advanced Robotics Workshop, Brampton, Ontario, 8 June 2011

Francis, R.; Osinski, G.; Barfoot, T.; Ng, H.; and the SLAM 2011 Team.: Sudbury Lunar Analogue Mission 2011.: Testing advanced vision systems for exploration missions, in 11th Space Vision and Advanced Robotics Workshop, Brampton, Ontario, 8 June 2011

Francis, R.: Vision Systems for Exploration.: Enabling astrobiological investigations with autonomous robotics, in 2nd Canadian Astrobiology Training Program annual meeting, Montreal, 29-31 May, 2011

Francis, R.: Air traffic surveillance in remote and oceanic airspace using orbital detection of Automatic Dependent Surveillance — Broadcast (ADS-B) signals, in Canadian Space Summit 2010, Ottawa, Ontario, 19-21 November 2010

Francis, R.: FLOAT.: A stratospheric research balloon for education and payload development, in Canadian Space Summit 2009, Kingston, Ontario, 20-22 November, 2009

Francis, R.; Tremblay, P.; Noel J.: CIMON.: The Canadian Magnetometric Observation Nanosatellites, in Second European Cubesat Workshop, Noordwijk, the Netherlands, 20-22 January 2009

Degrees Obtained

Degrees Obtained

M.Sc. Physics
Royal Military College of Canada
Kingston ON, Canada
May 2010

Thesis topic: Detection of Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast signals using stratospheric and orbital platforms

B.A.Sc. Mechanical Engineering (Co-op)
University of Ottawa
Ottawa ON, Canada
June 2006