Session

Technical Session II: Around The Corner

SSC10-II-4.pdf (2140 kB)
Presentation Slides

Abstract

In this paper, we describe the Radio Aurora Explorer (RAX) and its space weather mission. RAX is a satellite mission funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study space weather, and is a joint effort between SRI International and the University of Michigan. The primary mission objective is to study plasma instabilities that lead to magnetic field-aligned irregularities (FAI) of electron density in the lower polar thermosphere (80-400 km). These irregularities are known to disrupt trans-ionospheric communication and navigation signals. The RAX mission will use a network of existing ground radars that will scatter signals off the FAI to be measured by a receiver on the RAX spacecraft. The satellite is a 3kg CubeSat with a scheduled launch in late 2010. RAX is the first of the NSF-sponsored satellites to be manifested for a launch and represents a path forging activity for similar science missions conducted on nanosatellite vehicles.

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Aug 9th, 5:30 PM

The Radio Aurora Explorer – A Bistatic Radar Mission to Measure Space Weather Phenomenon

In this paper, we describe the Radio Aurora Explorer (RAX) and its space weather mission. RAX is a satellite mission funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study space weather, and is a joint effort between SRI International and the University of Michigan. The primary mission objective is to study plasma instabilities that lead to magnetic field-aligned irregularities (FAI) of electron density in the lower polar thermosphere (80-400 km). These irregularities are known to disrupt trans-ionospheric communication and navigation signals. The RAX mission will use a network of existing ground radars that will scatter signals off the FAI to be measured by a receiver on the RAX spacecraft. The satellite is a 3kg CubeSat with a scheduled launch in late 2010. RAX is the first of the NSF-sponsored satellites to be manifested for a launch and represents a path forging activity for similar science missions conducted on nanosatellite vehicles.