Niall completed a PhD in astrophysics in UCD in 1990 and has had a lifelong passion for all things "astro". He co-founded the Cork Institute of Technology Blackcrock Castle Observatory (BCO) in 2005 and is the current Head of Research in CIT. Niall was the local Director of the 9-week International Space University Space Studies Programme in 2017 and a contributing author to the National Space Strategy for Enterprise. He is a member of several national and international research committees. BCO has welcomed over 1.2 million visitors since opening. Niall has a strong interest in the development of the global space industry for societal benefit and has given invited presentations on how space can support the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Niall's research interests include measuring the brightness variations in quasars and he currently leads a project to use those techniques to determine the effectiveness of masks against Covid-19.