Business

June 13, 2012

Lockheed Martin delivers flight hardware for NASA’s Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission

Engineers and scientists at the Lockheed Martin Space Systems Advanced Technology Center, Palo Alto, Calif., have completed delivery of key hardware subsystems for NASA’s Magnetospheric Multiscale mission.

The delivery comprised four flight subsystems and one flight spare unit. The prime contractor Southwest Research Institute partnered with Lockheed Martin to develop and build the Hot Plasma Composition Analyzer as part of the MMS instrument suite.

When it launches in 2014, the MMS mission will provide unprecedented insights into a little-understood physical process at the heart of all space weather. This process, known as magnetic reconnection, sparks solar flares, coronal mass ejections, and other phenomena that can imperil Earth-orbiting spacecraft and terrestrial power grids. High-resolution data from MMS will provide researchers much greater clarity into the mechanisms involved in magnetic reconnection and associated phenomena.

“Magnetic reconnection at the Earth’s magnetopause is the mechanism by which magnetic fields in different regions – in this case, from the Interplanetary Magnetic Field carried by the solar wind, and the Earth’s magnetic field – change topology to open magnetospheric field lines. This connection allows energy and momentum to flow from the solar wind into the magnetosphere,” said Dr. Karlheinz Trattner, Lockheed Martin ATC space plasma physicist, and co-investigator on MMS.

The MMS mission is a Solar Terrestrial Probes mission comprising four identically instrumented spacecraft that will use Earth’s magnetosphere as a laboratory to study the microphysics of magnetic reconnection and two other fundamental plasma processes: energetic particle acceleration, and turbulence. These processes have implications for many space science research areas since they occur in all astrophysical plasma systems but can be studied in situ only in our solar system and most efficiently only in Earth’s magnetosphere, where they control the dynamics of the geospace environment and play a significant role in space weather.

The four satellites of the MMS mission will be deployed in an orbit to skim the boundary layer between the magnetosphere and the interplanetary magnetic field where magnetic reconnection is known to exist. The MMS spacecraft are being developed at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. GSFC is also responsible for the overall management of the MMS mission and mission operations.

The ATC is the research and development organization of Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company and creates the technology foundation for the company’s business. In addition, the ATC conducts basic research into understanding and predicting space weather and the behavior of our Sun, including its impacts on Earth and climate. It has a five-decade-long heritage of spaceborne instruments.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines January 28, 2015

News: Panel will propose new military retirement system - The long-awaited report on military compensation set to drop Thursday will propose fundamental changes to military retirement and health care benefits, according to several people familiar with the report. Source: DOD to request $585 billion for fiscal 2016 - The Department of Defense is preparing to submit a...
 
 

News Briefs January 28, 2015

Defense contractor to pay $2 million to settle claims A Northern California defense contractor will pay the federal government $2 million to settle claims about its manufacturing of parts for remote-controlled aircraft. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Sacramento says Sacramento-based Composite Engineering Inc. agreed to pay the money to end allegations that it artificially inflated...
 
 
Navy photograph

USS Roosevelt marks 200,000 trap

Navy photograph An F/A-18F Super Hornet flown by Capt. Daniel Grieco, commanding officer of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), and Capt. Benjamin Hewlett, deputy commander of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, complet...
 

 
Navy photograph by PO1 William Larned

USS California returns from maiden deployment

Navy photograph by PO1 William Larned The Virginia-class attack submarine USS California (SSN 781) returns from its maiden deployment to its homeport at Naval Submarine Base New London. Under the command of Cmdr. Shawn Huey, Ca...
 
 
Army photograph

Army proves new watercraft capabilities

Army photograph Marine Corps assets are loaded onto the USNS Sgt. Matej Kocak (T-AK 3005), from an U.S. Army Landing Craft Utility, or LCU, USAV Port Hudson during port operations, at White Beach Naval Base, Jan. 22, 2015. Sold...
 
 

Orbital stockholders approve merger with ATK’s aerospace, defense groups

Orbital Sciences Corporation announced Jan. 27 that at a special meeting, the company’s stockholders voted overwhelmingly to approve the proposed merger with the Aerospace and Defense Groups of Alliant Techsystems Inc., pursuant to the definitive transaction agreement dated April 28, 2014. Approximately 99 percent of the votes cast at the special meeting voted in favor...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>