Source: NASA

The United State’s National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is set to embark on two heliophysics missions that may give us the data necessary to better understand solar winds and other solar phenomena. The American space agency has announced its participation in the Extreme Ultraviolet High-Throughput Spectroscopic Telescope Epsilon Mission (EUVST) and the Electrojet Zeeman Imaging Explorer (EZIE) program, which make up two of the three space weather-related proposals NASA selected in September 2019. These programs may cost $400,000 for a nine-month mission.

The former, EUVST program, is a solar telescope project that looks closer into how the sun releases solar winds and spews out solar material that impact space radiation levels. This mission is scheduled for launch in 2026 and will be led by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). However, NASA will pour $55 million into the mission and will provide technical support.

The latter, EZIE program, will use three small satellites to study the electrical currents above the poles linking auroras, sometimes referred to as the northern lights, to the Earth’s magnetosphere. Scientists want to look into this phenomenon since the disturbances in the magnetosphere that create auroras also interfere with radio and communication signals. There are fears that these disturbances could damage spacecraft as well.

NASA picked five more space weather mission proposals in August and gave them $1.25 million each to conduct a concept study. Space agencies are sending out these types of missions to better understand solar phenomenon that may impact our lives in more ways than we know. The ultimate goal is to be able to predict events like solar flares and coronal mass ejections so we can take steps to protect those up in the ISS, spacecraft, and future technologies.

The story was filed by the News Desk. The Desk can be reached at


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