An image collage shows the various technologies and people, both on the ground and in space, susceptible to space weather. A coronal mass ejection and solar flare emerging from the Sun on the left illustrate some of the more extreme causes of space weather. (Credit: Johns Hopkins APL)

Space Weather Sensors

Our Contribution

Knowing the distribution and direction of energetic charged particles along a spacecraft’s trajectory is key to situational and satellite-health awareness, yet many missions resist flying particle sensors because the instruments can be heavy and expensive. APL is developing a small, highly capable charged-particle sensor to deliver data that can help Air Force operators assess whether space weather conditions play a role in spacecraft anomalies. Building on the Laboratory’s heritage of developing particle instruments for NASA missions, APL produced a concept for a sensor that meets or exceeds Air Force requirements.

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