Participating in Space Experiments

Responsible person: Hervé Lamy 

Overall description
Space environment monitoring begins with the availability of data. The Institute is targeting a more active participation in the construction and/or operation of space weather-related instruments. 

Magnetometer

Long Term Goal
Harbor a baseline expertise for initiating such participations and initial feasibility study, while specific proposals remain under the umbrella of GSTP (General Support Technology Program) or PRODEX programs of ESA. Eventually, a fleet of micro-satellites, each carrying such a magnetometer, will be able to map large-scale and spatial changes in the near-Earth magnetic field. Such spacecraft constellations are needed to forecast space weather. 

Short Term Goal

  • Study the feasibility of developing a resonating Xylophone Bar Magnetometer suited to miniaturization using microelectromechanical system (MEMS) technologies,
  • Creation of a prototype + preliminary tests to emphasize factors and dimensions that increase the sensitivity of the device,
  • Introduction of a GSTP.

Polarization

Long Term Goal
We want to better understand the magnetosphere/ionosphere coupling and the physics of the ionosphere.

  • Use of the polarization of the red line as a proxy to constrain the thermospheric models.
  • Three-dimensional tomography of the polarized auroral emissions.
  • Application to other planetary atmospheres.

Short Term Goal

  • Feasibility of the measurement of the polarization of auroral lines with the current ALIS cameras.
  • Development of a new instrument dedicated to polarization + possibility of using empty existing ALIS stations.

Meteors

Long Term Goal

  • Relationships to comets and asteroids, important information on the solar system origin.
  • Better characterizing of space environments, input for SPENVIS.
  • Importance of the ion metallic layers released by meteors for the chemistry of upper atmospheres.
  • Modeling of the meteor trail as a plasma.

Short Term Goal

  • Construction of one or two beacons dedicated to radio meteor detections.
  • Extension of the current network of radio meteor stations in Belgium to have a better spatial coverage.
  • Use simultaneous detections of meteor echoes from several emitters (beacons) to retrieve physical parameters of the meteors.
 

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