Dr Jacobs obtained her PhD as part of a cotutelle program from both the University of Queensland and Ecole Centrale Paris in 2011. Her work focussed on atmospheric entry applications, and this thesis investigated the radiative heat transfer encountered on a misson to Saturn's moon, Titan.
Following on from her doctoral work, Dr Jacobs was awarded a postdoctoral position in France with the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (French space agency). During this project, Dr Jacobs was involved in the installation of a plasma torch facility capable of reproducing atmospheric entry conditions. Experiments in this facility have been used to improve computational methods for radiation modelling and for testing of the materials used in spacecraft heat shields.
Dr Jacobs' current research includes experimental and computational work on atmospheric entry, as well as diagnostics used in non-thermal plasma applications such as medical sterilisation and the reduction of pollution.