J9.3 NOAA Plans for Geomagnetic Storm Observations

Tuesday, 8 January 2013: 9:30 AM
Room 16B (Austin Convention Center)
Benjamin Diedrich, NOAA/NESDIS, Silver Spring, MD; and D. Biesecker, P. Mulligan, N. M. Simpson, and P. Wilczynski

For many years, NOAA has issued geomagnetic storm watches and warnings based on coronal mass ejection (CME) imagery and in-situ solar wind measurements from research satellites. The NOAA Satellite and Information Service (NESDIS) recognizes the importance of this service to protecting technological infrastructure including power grids, polar air travel, and satellite navigation, so is actively planning to replace these assets to ensure their continued availability. NOAA, NASA, and the US Air Force are working on launching the first operational solar wind mission in 2014, the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR), to follow NASA's Advanced Composition Explorer (ACE) in making solar wind measurements at the sun-Earth L1 for 15-60 minute geomagnetic storm warning. For continuing operations after the DSCOVR mission, one technology NOAA is looking at is solar sails that could greatly improve the lead time of geomagnetic storm warnings by stationkeeping closer to the sun than L1. We are working with NASA and private industry on the Sunjammer solar sail demonstration mission to test making solar wind measurements from a solar sail in the sun-Earth L1 region. NOAA uses CME imagery from the NASA/ESA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) and the NASA Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) satellites to issue 1-3 day geomagnetic storm watches. For the future, NOAA worked with the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) to develop a Compact Coronagraph (CCOR) through Phase A, and is studying ways to complete instrument development and test fly it for use in the future.
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