SCIENTISTS from Oxford University will help create a real-life TARDiS to explore the effects of climate change as well as the origin of stars and planets.

The THz sounder TARDiS (Terahertz Atmospheric/ Astrophysics Radiation Detection in Space) will measure the present state of the Earth's uppermost atmosphere through the emitted radiation from oxygen atoms.

A team of researchers from across the country will design the satellite instrument to monitor this complex interaction between the upper atmosphere and the climate below.

The work will be jointly led by Oxford’s Department of Physics and the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s Rutherford Appleton Laboratory Space, who will collaborate with other UK groups.

Dimitra Rigopoulou, the project’s principal investigator and Professor of Astrophysics at Oxford University, said: "The TARDiS instrument is a pathfinder for two new space missions, the Low Cost Upper Atmosphere Sounder (LOCUS) for Earth Observations and the Far-Infrared Spectroscopic Explorer (FIRSPEX) designed to probe the origins of stars and planets in the Universe.

"The potential deployment of TARDiS on the International Space Station is an essential requirement for both of these international space missions as it demonstrates the technological readiness of the projects.