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Topic: Sounding Rocket

NASA to launch Dynamo-2 Sounding Rockets to investigate Atmospheric Electric Current

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationGreenbelt, MD – Some 50 miles up, where Earth’s atmosphere blends into space, the air itself hums with an electric current.

Scientists call it the atmospheric dynamo, an Earth-sized electric generator.

It’s taken hundreds of years for scientists to lay the groundwork to understand it, but the principles that keep it running are only just now being revealed in detail. 

A map of the ionospheric currents at the time of Dynamo 1’s launch on July 4, 2013. Currents – whose intensity is marked by red and blue coloring – travel in opposite directions on either side of the magnetic equator, marked with a pink line. The yellow dots are magnetometer readings from the ground. (NASA/JAXA/R. Pfaff et al)

A map of the ionospheric currents at the time of Dynamo 1’s launch on July 4, 2013. Currents – whose intensity is marked by red and blue coloring – travel in opposite directions on either side of the magnetic equator, marked with a pink line. The yellow dots are magnetometer readings from the ground. (NASA/JAXA/R. Pfaff et al)

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NASA missions examine reason Earth’s poles mess with Electronics

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationGreenbelt, MD – The 2019 Norway Campaign has come to an end with two of three missions being launched. The Cusp Heating Investigation, or CHI mission, was successfully launched December 10th — citizen scientists Hearts In The Ice, affiliated with the Aurorasaurus project, captured imagery of the launch from the ground in Svalbard.

The Investigation of Cusp Irregularities-5 or ICI-5 mission launched November 26th.  After 17 launch attempts, the Cusp Region Experiment-2, or CREX-2, mission, was not able to get off the ground due to a combination of unacceptable weather conditions and a lack of science activity.

Earth’s magnetosphere, showing the northern and southern polar cusps. (Andøya Space Center/Trond Abrahamsen)

Earth’s magnetosphere, showing the northern and southern polar cusps. (Andøya Space Center/Trond Abrahamsen)

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Austin Peay State University to send payload to space for first time in school history

 

Austin Peay State University - APSUClarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University has a payload bound for space. This is a first in APSU’s 92-year history.

Austin Peay State University physics professor Dr. Justin Oelgoetz made the announcement on Facebook Tuesday: “APSU’s first payload bound for space just passed inspection and has been integrated into the rocket’s payload stack.”

Austin Peay State University students Zach Hill, left, and Zach Givens show off some of their work during Rocket Week at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. (APSU)

Austin Peay State University students Zach Hill, left, and Zach Givens show off some of their work during Rocket Week at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. (APSU)

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NASA Sounding Rocket Probes the Dark Regions of Space

 

Written by Mara Johnson-Groh
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationGreenbelt, MD – The Dual-channel Extreme Ultraviolet Continuum Spectrograph or DEUCE payload was successfully launched at 1:46am CST, December 18th, 2018 on a Black Brant IX sounding rocket from the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

The rocket carried the payload to 175 miles altitude before descending and landing by parachute.  Payload recovery is in progress.  The experiment team reports that great data was received during the flight.

The DEUCE payload sits atop a NASA Black Brant IX sounding rocket at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. (NASA)

The DEUCE payload sits atop a NASA Black Brant IX sounding rocket at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. (NASA)

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NASA Sounding Rocket finds signatures of Tiny Solar Flares

 

Written by Sarah Frazier
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationGreenbelt, MD – Like most solar sounding rockets, the second flight of the FOXSI instrument – short for Focusing Optics X-ray Solar Imager – lasted 15 minutes, with just six minutes of data collection. But in that short time, the cutting-edge instrument found the best evidence to date of a phenomenon scientists have been seeking for years: signatures of tiny solar flares that could help explain the mysterious extreme heating of the Sun’s outer atmosphere. 

FOXSI detected a type of light called hard X-rays – whose wavelengths are much shorter than the light humans can see – which is a signature of extremely hot solar material, around 18 million degrees Fahrenheit.

The NASA-funded FOXSI instrument captured new evidence of small solar flares, called nanoflares, during its December 2014 flight on a suborbital sounding rocket. Nanoflares could help explain why the Sun’s atmosphere, the corona, is so much hotter than the surface. Here, FOXSI’s observations of hard X-rays are shown in blue, superimposed over a soft X-ray image of the Sun from JAXA and NASA’s Hinode solar-observing satellite. (JAXA/NASA/Hinode/FOXSI)

The NASA-funded FOXSI instrument captured new evidence of small solar flares, called nanoflares, during its December 2014 flight on a suborbital sounding rocket. Nanoflares could help explain why the Sun’s atmosphere, the corona, is so much hotter than the surface. Here, FOXSI’s observations of hard X-rays are shown in blue, superimposed over a soft X-ray image of the Sun from JAXA and NASA’s Hinode solar-observing satellite. (JAXA/NASA/Hinode/FOXSI)

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NASA launches Three Sounding Rockets to study Alaska Auroras

 

Written by Keith Koehler
NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWallops Island, VA – Three NASA rockets carrying instruments into active auroras over Alaska to aid scientists studying the northern lights and the interactions of the solar wind with Earth’s upper atmosphere and ionosphere were launched within a nearly two-hour period March 2nd, 2017.

The instruments were successfully carried on Black IX sounding rockets from the Poker Flat Research Range north of Fairbanks. The first two rockets were launched nearly simultaneously at 12:41am and 12:42:30am EST as part of the Neutral Jets in Auroral Arcs mission. 

Two NASA sounding rockets are launched 90-seconds apart into an active aurora from the Poker Flat Research Range in Alaska. (NASA/Terry Zaperach)

Two NASA sounding rockets are launched 90-seconds apart into an active aurora from the Poker Flat Research Range in Alaska. (NASA/Terry Zaperach)

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NASA successfully launched Sounding Rocket into the Alaskan Sky

 

Written by Keith Koehler
NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWallops Island, VA – An experiment to measure nitric oxide in the polar sky was successfully launched on a NASA sounding rocket at 8:45am EST, January 27th, 2017, from the Poker Flat Research Range in Alaska.

The Polar Night Nitric Oxide experiment or PolarNOx was launched on a Black Brant IX sounding rocket to an altitude of nearly 176 miles.  Preliminary information shows that good data was collected.

NASA Sounding Rocket launching from the Poker Flat Research Range in Alaska. (NASA/Jamie Adkins)

NASA Sounding Rocket launching from the Poker Flat Research Range in Alaska. (NASA/Jamie Adkins)

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