Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

NASA Spacecraft To Study Impact Of Magnetic Storms

Date:
March 17, 2000
Source:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Summary:
NASA is about to launch the first spacecraft dedicated to imaging the Earth's magnetosphere -- an invisible magnetic field surrounding the planet that is strongly influenced by the solar wind.

NASA is about to launch the first spacecraft dedicated to imaging the Earth's magnetosphere -- an invisible magnetic field surrounding the planet that is strongly influenced by the solar wind.

Related Articles


A Delta II 7326 rocket is scheduled to launch the Imager for Magnetopause-to-Aurora Global Exploration, or IMAGE, satellite into orbit March 25 from the Western Range at Vandenberg Air Force Base, CA. The eight-minute launch window for IMAGE opens at 3:35 p.m. EST (12:35 p.m. PST).

IMAGE is the first of its kind, designed to actually "see" most of the major charged-particle systems in the space surrounding Earth. Previous spacecraft explored the magnetosphere by detecting particles and fields they encountered as they passed through them. This technique limited their "vision" to small portions of this vast and dynamic field, which extends about 40,000 miles on Earth's day side and about 110,000 miles on Earth's night side. It would be similar to attempt understanding the nature of the world's oceans from a single buoy.

Just as taking a photograph of the night sky allows astronomers to count and study millions of stars at once, images returned by the IMAGE spacecraft will provide simultaneous measurements of the densities, energies and masses of charged particles throughout the inner magnetosphere using three-dimensional imaging techniques.

"IMAGE brings to space weather studies the kind of capability that geosynchronous weather satellites have brought to surface meteorology," said Dr. Thomas Moore, IMAGE Project Scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD. "We may soon be treated to evening news images of plasma clouds engulfing those weather satellites."

During its two-year mission, the half-ton IMAGE spacecraft will image remote particle populations in the magnetosphere. These "photographs" will then be linked together to make movies in real time. Their rapid two-minute cadence will allow detailed study of the interaction of the solar wind with the magnetosphere and the magnetosphere's response during a magnetic storm, which typically lasts a few days.

"In addition to stored data, IMAGE will implement a real-time down link that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration intends to use for space weather forecasting," said Principal Investigator Dr. James Burch of the Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), San Antonio, TX.

To fulfill its science goals, IMAGE will employ six state-of- the-art instruments along with a data processor. The instruments and their developers are:

* High Energy Neutral Atom (HENA) imager, developed by Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, MD

* Medium Energy Neutral Atom (MENA) imager, developed by SwRI

* Low Energy Neutral Atom (LENA) imager, developed by Goddard

* Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) imager, developed by the University of Arizona, Tucson

* Far Ultraviolet (FUV) imager, developed by the University of California at Berkeley

* Radio Plasma Imager (RPI), developed by the University of Massachusetts at Lowell

* Central Instrument Data Processor (CIDP) developed by SwRI

IMAGE is the first of two Medium-class Explorer missions NASA has scheduled for launch. The total cost of the mission, including spacecraft, launch vehicle and mission operations for the first two years is about $154 million. The IMAGE Project Office at Goddard will manage the mission for NASA's Office of Space Science in Washington, DC, while the principal investigator at SwRI has overall responsibility for the science, instrumentation, spacecraft and data analyses.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Space of Sunnyvale, Calif. built the IMAGE spacecraft -- which measures 7.38 feet in diameter and 4.99 feet high -- under contract with SwRI. On orbit, the RPI antennas aboard IMAGE will extend 33 feet parallel to the spin axis and 820 feet in four directions perpendicular to the spin axis, making IMAGE the longest spacecraft currently on orbit. The IMAGE mission press kit is available at:

ftp://ftp.hq.nasa.gov/pub/pao/presskit/2000/image.pdf

More information about the IMAGE mission can be found at:

http://pluto.space.swri.edu/IMAGE/

and

http://image.gsfc.nasa.gov


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "NASA Spacecraft To Study Impact Of Magnetic Storms." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 March 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000317051617.htm>.
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. (2000, March 17). NASA Spacecraft To Study Impact Of Magnetic Storms. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 30, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000317051617.htm
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "NASA Spacecraft To Study Impact Of Magnetic Storms." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000317051617.htm (accessed January 30, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Space & Time News

Friday, January 30, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

NASA Holds Memorial to Remember Astronauts

NASA Holds Memorial to Remember Astronauts

AP (Jan. 29, 2015) NASA is remembering 17 astronauts who were killed in the line of duty and dozens more who have died since the agency&apos;s beginning. A remembrance ceremony was held Thursday at NASA&apos;s Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama. (Jan. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Asteroid's Moon Spotted During Earth Flyby

Asteroid's Moon Spotted During Earth Flyby

Rumble (Jan. 27, 2015) Scientists working with NASA&apos;s Deep Space Network antenna at Goldstone, California discovered an unexpected moon while observing asteroid 2004 BL86 during its recent flyby past Earth. Credit to &apos;NASA JPL&apos;. Video provided by Rumble
Powered by NewsLook.com
Water Fleas Prepare for Space Voyage

Water Fleas Prepare for Space Voyage

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Jan. 26, 2015) Scientists are preparing a group of water fleas for a unique voyage into space. The aquatic crustaceans, known as Daphnia, can be used as a miniature model for biomedical research, and their reproductive and swimming behaviour will be tested for signs of stress while on board the International Space Station. Jim Drury went to meet the team. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mars Rover Opportunity Celebrates 11-Year Anniversary

Mars Rover Opportunity Celebrates 11-Year Anniversary

Rumble (Jan. 26, 2015) Eleven years ago NASA&apos;s Opportunity rover touched down on Mars for what was only supposed to be a 90-day mission. Since then it has traveled 25.9 miles (41.7 kilometers), further than any other off-Earth surface vehicle has ever driven. Credit to &apos;NASA&apos;. Video provided by Rumble
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins