Dynamics and energetics of the coupled solar atmosphere
The synergy between state-of-the-art observations and numerical simulations
Hote InterContinental The Clement, Monterey CA, March 12-16, 2012
SDO: The Solar Dynamics Observatory is the first mission to be launched for NASA's Living With a Star (LWS) Program, a program designed to understand the causes of solar variability and its impacts on Earth. SDO is designed to help us understand the Sun's influence on Earth and Near-Earth space by studying the solar atmosphere on small scales of space and time and in many wavelengths simultaneously.
SDO's goal is to understand, driving towards a predictive capability, the solar variations that influence life on Earth and humanity's technological systems by determining
Below are some of SDO's Latest Images.
SDO will study how solar activity is created and how Space Weather comes from that activity. Measurements of the interior of the Sun, the Sun's magnetic field, the hot plasma of the solar corona, and the irradiance that creates the ionospheres of the planets are our primary data products.
SDO has three scientific experiments:
Each of these experiments perform several measurements that characterize how and why the Sun varies. These three instruments will observe the Sun simultaneously, performing the entire range of measurements necessary to understand the variations on the Sun.
SDO is a sun-pointing semi-autonomous spacecraft that will allow nearly continuous observations of the Sun with a continuous science data downlink rate of 130 Megabits per second (Mbps). The spacecraft is 4.5 meters high and over 2 meters on each side, weighing a total of 3100 kg (fuel included). SDO's inclined geosynchronous orbit was chosen to allow continuous observations of the Sun and enable its exceptionally high data rate through the use of a single dedicated ground station.
The primary goal of the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) explorer is to understand how the solar atmosphere is energized. IRIS will focus on the interface region between photosphere and corona where most of the mechanical energy driving solar atmospheric heating is deposited. Understanding this crucial interface between the photosphere and corona remains a fundamental challenge in solar and heliospheric science. IRIS will trace the flow of energy and plasma through the chromosphere and transition region into the corona using spectrometry and imaging. The IRIS science investigation combines advanced 3D numerical modeling with a high resolution (1/3 arcsec, 1s) UV imaging spectrograph.
The IRIS science investigation is centered on three themes of broad significance to solar and plasma physics, space weather, and astrophysics, aiming to understand how internal convective flows power atmospheric activity:
Hinode is an international mission to study our nearest star, the sun. To accomplish this, the Hinode mission includes a suite of three science instruments -- the Solar Optical Telescope, X-ray Telescope and Extreme Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrometer. Together, these instruments study the generation, transport, and dissipation of magnetic energy from the photosphere to the corona and record how energy stored in the sun's magnetic field is released, either gradually or violently, as the field rises into the sun’s outer atmosphere.
Hinode's science goals are: