A swarm is sent into space on Friday: In the mission “Swarm” to find answers to satellite – for example on the question of why the protective shield of the earth is weaker at the moment. ” / p> div
Who wants to look deep inside the earth, must be high up in space: After years of preparation to Russia on Friday in a new satellite mission of the European Space Agency ESA start to get off the Earth orbit to take the blue planet targeted – specifically its magnetic field. Three research satellite mission “Swarm” (“swarm”) will shield these earthly accurately measured in the coming years, which protects us from the destructive cosmic radiation. Also for climate research, the expected results could be significant.
Of the three “Swarm” satellites, which are shot on board a rocket from the Plesetsk cosmodrome in northern Russia into space, the researchers hope to answer many questions still unresolved the Earth’s magnetic field. It is known that it is produced mainly by the rotation of the earth – and that it is constantly changing. It is also known that it protects our planet from bombardment by charged particles in solar storms. Without this shield life on Earth would not be possible.
Severe solar storms set GPS lame
Still can massively impair particularly heavy particle beams of the sun of our everyday life. After all, severe solar storms have already caused power outages on Earth, and satellite communications and navigation systems can be paralyzed by ejected from the solar particle clouds.
Against this background, it does not just appear reassuring that the strength of our protective shield fluctuates constantly – especially since some time also mark a significant weakening of the magnetic field can be seen as the Esa reported. These changes are the three identical “Swarm” satellites now explore in detail.
By analyzing the properties of our magnetic field, the ESA mission could help researchers to far-reaching new insights – about the natural processes deep in the onion-structured soil, possible relationships with the global climate change and space weather, which is determined by the solar activity. This information in turn could help in the search for the causes of the current magnetic field weakening.
Better prediction of earthquakes
four years to discover the secrets of our cosmic shield the “Swarm” satellites. This trio is circling Earth in swarm formation and collect data – two probes in 460 kilometers, 530 miles up in the third. Each probe is equipped with five instruments, including a vector field magnetometer for precise measurement of the magnetic field direction.
In their observations of the geomagnetic field, the “Swarm” mission on the data of the started in 2000 and still ongoing ESA science mission will have access “cluster”. The four “cluster” Satellite explore the conditions within the Earth’s magnetosphere and its interaction with the charged particles of the solar wind. You are at 10,000 kilometers from Earth – and so can the “Swarm” satellites on their orbits provide additional measurements
addition to their scientific importance, the new ESA mission in the rest should be of quite practical use. Thus, the data of “Swarm” could help to improve the accuracy of navigation systems. Also earthquake prediction could be improved.