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CUBE (CME Catcher carusel) Nanosatellites for Space Weather Monitoring

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Organisational Unit
Activity Type
Implementation progress
0%
17 March 2022

Duration: 6 months

Objective

One of the main processes associated with a release of large energy in the planetary magnetospheres is magnetic reconnection. Understanding the energy excess due to the reconnection is indispensable for characterising various phenomena, such as auroras, the formation of the cold-dense plasma sheet, particle acceleration and the malfunctioning of human everyday life infrastructures. In addition, solar energetic particle (SEP) events worsen the radiation environment around the Earth, representing a hazardous condition for both technological systems and humans.

We propose to monitor the magnetospheric response to Coronal Mass Ejections (CME) at reconnection sites and near the poles as well as the effect of SEP events in the terrestrial environment  by using a constellation of nano-sats.

The main objective of the constellation is to identify incoming CME and SEP events, measure them at different magnetospheric locations and altitude to quantitatively understand  the energy  transport toward the Earth. We will also study the SEP penetration in the magnetosphere, ionization of the ionosphere, and oscillations of the magnetic field during SEP events.

The baseline mission analysis, to be confirmed during the study, includes two 6U spacecraft on circular SSO and six 12U spacecraft on a highly energetic circular orbit, ~60000km radius, phased 60 deg away from one another. All units will be equipped with magnetometers, plasma analyzer, and particle monitors capable of measuring magnetic field strength of a few nT,  proton spectra from a few tens keV to a few hundred MeV, and electron spectra up to a few hundred keV.

Contract number
4000137645
OSIP Idea Id
I-2021-04591
Related OSIP Campaign
Nanosats for Spaceweather monitoring
Main application area
Space Safety
Budget
100000€
Topical cluster
CUBE (CME CATCHER CARUSEL) Nanosatellites for Space Weather Monitoring