IRIS (SMEX-12) - Pegasus XL - Vandenberg L-1011 "Stargazer" - 28.06.2013 02:27 UTC

Автор instml, 27.06.2012 22:49:48

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Space Alien

Солнечный телескоп IRIS успешно выведен на орбиту

Американский солнечный телескоп IRIS успешно выведен на орбиту в ходе последнего запланированного запуска ракеты Pegasus XL, сообщает НАСА.

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17 July 2013: IRIS first light, followed by instrument and science calibration.


Telescope Door on IRIS Opens
July 17, 2013

In its first major milestone since launch, the IRIS team opened the telescope door on July 17, 2013. The telescope door is the circular white object on the far left of this graphic.

Image Credit: NASA Goddard
  Today at 11:14 pm PDT (2:14 pm EDT) the IRIS Lockheed Martin instrument team successfully opened the door on NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, which launched June 27, 2013, aboard a Pegasus XL rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.
A 60-day check out period began at launch. The first 30 days, which ends July 27, consists of tests and spacecraft system checks. The team will use the remaining 30 days for initial observing runs to fine tune instrument observations. If all is nominal, the team plans to begin normal science mode by August 26.
All data will be available to scientists and the public as soon as the mission begins science operations. The team is looking forward to receiving high-resolution images and spectra soon after first light.
Additional mission updates will be provided as warranted.


ЦитироватьТелескоп IRIS начинает следить за Солнцем
22 Июля - 11:16 
Новенький телескоп IRIS, созданный в НАСА, открыл заслонку своего объектива и начинает слежение за выбросами солнечного вещества. Американские астрофизики возлагают на проект Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph большие надежды и верят в то, что аппарат поможет им построить точную компьютерную модель того, что происходит в атмосфере нашего центрального светила.

 Ученых интересуют процессы, проходящие в нижних слоях атмосферы Солнца
Заслуживает внимания сам процесс выведения данного аппарата на орбиту. Данная операция была осуществлена при помощи ракеты-носителя Pegasus, стартовавшей не с обычного космодрома, а с борта специально созданного самолета L-1011 TriStar. Все произошло 27 июня этого года и с тех пор ученые из НАСА осуществляли проверку всех бортовых систем спутника. В настоящее время стартовал второй этап подготовительных работ, заключающийся в настройке самих приборов наблюдения. IRIS начинает следить за Солнцем для того, чтобы откалибровать все наблюдательные системы и подготовить их к 26 августа, когда телескоп и приступит к своей работе.
Ученых интересуют процессы, проходящие в нижних слоях атмосферы Солнца. Все дело в том, что температура в этом районе растет от 6000К в самом низу, и до миллиона градусов в верхних слоях. Понять, какие же процессы приводят к таким контрастам, ученые и собираются при помощи аппарата Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph.

"Были когда-то и мы рысаками!!!"


NASA's IRIS Telescope Offers First Glimpse of Sun's Mysterious Atmosphere

July 25, 2013

These two images show a section of the sun as seen by NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, or IRIS, on the right and NASA's SDO on the left. The IRIS image provides scientists with unprecedented detail of the lowest parts of the sun's atmosphere, known as the interface region.

Image Credit: NASA/SDO/IRIS

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  The moment when a telescope first opens its doors represents the culmination of years of work and planning -- while simultaneously laying the groundwork for a wealth of research and answers yet to come. It is a moment of excitement and perhaps even a little uncertainty. On July 17, 2013, the international team of scientists and engineers who supported and built NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, or IRIS, all lived through that moment. As the spacecraft orbited around Earth, the door of the telescope opened to view the mysterious lowest layers of the sun's atmosphere and the results thus far are nothing short of amazing. The data is crisp and clear, showing unprecedented detail of this little-observed region.
"These beautiful images from IRIS are going to help us understand how the sun's lower atmosphere might power a host of events around the sun," said Adrian Daw, the mission scientist for IRIS at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. "Anytime you look at something in more detail than has ever been seen before, it opens up new doors to understanding. There's always that potential element of surprise."
As the telescope door opened on July 17, 2013, IRIS's single instrument began to observe the sun in exceptional detail. IRIS's first images showed a multitude of thin, fibril-like structures that have never been seen before, revealing enormous contrasts in density and temperature occur throughout this region even between neighboring loops that are only a few hundred miles apart. The images also show spots that rapidly brighten and dim, which provide clues to how energy is transported and absorbed throughout the region.
The IRIS images of fine structure in the interface region will help scientists track how magnetic energy contributes to heating in the sun's atmosphere. Scientists need to observe the region in exquisite detail, because the energy flowing through it powers the upper layer of the sun's atmosphere, the corona, to temperatures greater than 1 million kelvins (about 1.8 million F), almost a thousand times hotter than the sun's surface itself.
IRIS is a NASA Small Explorer mission that launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., on June 27, 2013. IRIS's capabilities are uniquely tailored to unravel the interface region. Understanding the interface region is important because it forms the ultraviolet emission that impacts near-Earth space and Earth's climate. Energy traveling through the region also helps drive the solar wind, which during extreme space weather events near Earth can affect satellites, power grids, and global positioning systems, or GPS.
Designed to research the interface region in more detail than has ever been done before, IRIS's instrument is a combination of an ultraviolet telescope and what's called a spectrograph. Light from the telescope is split into two components. The first provides high-resolution images, capturing data on about one percent of the sun at a time. While these are relatively small snapshots, the images can resolve very fine features, as small as 150 miles across.
While the images are of one wavelength of light at a time, the second component is the spectrograph that provides information about many wavelengths of light at once. The instrument splits the sun's light into its various wavelengths and measures how much of any given wavelength is present. This information is then portrayed on a graph showing spectral "lines." Taller lines correspond to wavelengths in which the sun emits relatively more light. Analysis of the spectral lines can also provide velocity, temperature and density, key information when trying to track how energy and heat moves through the region.
"The quality of images and spectra we are receiving from IRIS is amazing. This is just what we were hoping for," said Alan Title, IRIS principal investigator at the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory in Palo Alto, Calif. "There is much work ahead to understand what we're seeing, but the quality of the data will enable us to do that."
Not only does IRIS provide state-of-the-art observations to look at the interface region, it makes uses of advanced computing to help interpret what it sees. Indeed, interpreting the light flowing out of the interface region could not be done well prior to the advent of today's supercomputers because, in this area of the sun, the transfer and conversion of energy from one form to another is not understood.
The IRIS mission has long-term implications for understanding the genesis of space weather near Earth. Understanding how energy and solar material move through the interface region could help scientists improve forecasts for the kinds of events that can disrupt Earth technologies.
The IRIS Observatory was designed and the mission managed by Lockheed Martin. The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Mass., built the telescope. Montana State University in Bozeman, Mont. designed the spectrograph. NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., provides mission operations and ground data systems. Goddard manages the Small Explorer Program for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington, D.C. The Norwegian Space Centre is providing regular downlinks of science data. Other contributors include the University of Oslo in Norway and Stanford University in Stanford, Calif.
For more information about the IRIS mission, visit:

ЦитироватьPALO ALTO, Calif., July 25, 2013 –The Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) observatory, designed and built by Lockheed Martin [NYSE:LMT] for NASA, has produced its first images and spectra of a little understood region of the sun through which the energy that supports the Sun's hot corona is transported. IRIS was launched on June 27, 2013, and the front door of the IRIS telescope was opened on July 17.
"The quality of images and spectra we are receiving fr om IRIS is amazing. This is just what we were hoping for," said Dr. Alan Title, IRIS principal investigator and physicist at the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center (ATC) Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory in Palo Alto, Calif. "There is much work ahead to understand what we're seeing, but the quality of the data will enable us to do that."
The IRIS mission has long-term implications for understanding the genesis of solar storms.  By tracing the flow of energy and plasma through the interface region – between the solar surface and the solar corona – where most of the sun's ultraviolet emissions are generated, IRIS data will allow scientists to study and model a region of the sun that has yet to reveal its secrets.
"With IRIS, we now have a unique opportunity to provide significant missing pieces in our understanding of energy transport on the sun," said Dr. Alan Title, IRIS principal investigator and physicist at the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center (ATC) Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory in Palo Alto, Calif. "The complex processes and enormous contrasts of density, temperature and magnetic field within this interface region require instrument and modeling capabilities that are now finally within reach."
The evolution of IRIS from concept to space-based solar observatory was remarkably rapid. The contract was awarded to the Lockheed Martin-led IRIS team on June 23, 2009. Four years and four days later, IRIS was in orbit. Just 20 days after launch, engineers in the IRIS Mission Operations Center at NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif., downlinked the initial images.
"The IRIS mission has been, from inception, an enormous international collaborative development effort," said Title. "Our IRIS team was formed to design the mission and prepare the initial proposal. We have worked together seamlessly ever since."
The IRIS Observatory was designed and the mission managed by the Lockheed Martin Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory of the Advanced Technology Center in Palo Alto, with contributions from LM Civil Space. The IRIS instrument was integrated to the spacecraft, and observatory testing was performed by an integrated team of engineers from the ATC and Civil Space at the LM Space Systems Sunnyvale facility. The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics built the telescope.
In parallel with payload development, there was international collaboration in calculating enormous numerical simulations of the interface region, mostly using models from the University of Oslo. These simulations are key to interpreting the IRIS observations. The University of Oslo and Lockheed Martin also worked together in creating tools for execution of the science mission, enabling scientists to plan observations on the complex and flexible IRIS instrument more easily.  Kongsberg Satellite Service under an ESA PRODEX contract with the Norwegian Space Centre captures IRIS data with their antennas in Svalbard, inside the Arctic Circle, in northern Norway.
NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif., is responsible for mission operations and the ground data system. The Ames Pleiades supercomputer was used to carry out many of the numerical simulations. IRIS science data is managed by the Joint Science Operations Center of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) – run by Stanford and Lockheed Martin  – wh ere scientists can use the same set of tools to access data from IRIS, SDO and Hinode instruments. Montana State University faculty and students assisted in the design of the spectrograph and are involved in IRIS science operations and data analysis. NASA's Kennedy Space Center acquired the Orbital Sciences Corp. Pegasus launch vehicle and managed the Vandenberg launch. NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., oversees the Small Explorers program.
Бывает, что усердие превозмогает и рассудок

Space Alien

Космический телескоп IRIS сделал первые снимки Солнца

Космический солнечный телескоп NASA IRIS (Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph), выведенный на орбиту 28 июня, сделал первые снимки солнечной атмосферы — анализ данных показал, что аппарат работает без сбоев, сообщает РИА Новости со ссылкой на американское аэрокосмическое агентство.

На первых изображениях Солнца, которые передал IRIS, видно множество тонких "нитей", которые ранее никогда не наблюдались. Они свидетельствуют о большом разбросе плотностей и температур протуберанцев, которые находятся на расстоянии всего нескольких сотен километров друг от друга. Снимки также зафиксировали пятна, которые быстро вспыхивают и гаснут, отражая процессы переноса энергии в солнечной атмосфере.

"Качество и спектральные характеристики изображений, которые мы получаем с телескопа IRIS, поразительны. Он оправдал наши надежды. Потребуется проделать большую работу, чтобы объяснить, что именно мы видим, но качество данных позволит нам это сделать", — сказал Алан Тайтл (Alan Title), сотрудник компании Lockheed Martin, участвующий в проекте.

Александр Ч.

NASA | A First for IRIS: Observing a Gigantic Solar Eruption
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