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Atmospheric Sciences

Earth's atmospheric blanket and the protective bubble of the magnetosphere shelter everything on the planet from the most energetic wavelengths of the Sun's radiation. Haystack Observatory's Atmospheric Sciences Group studies all levels of the atmosphere using incoherent scatter radar (ISR) and distributed arrays of radiowave instruments such as Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers.

The group has been operating for more than forty years, collecting ionospheric measurements spanning a range of latitudes covering most of Eastern North America. Most of these measurements are available from the Madrigal Database or from the Millstone Hill ISR Data Access page. Recent GPS measurements have extended this to global coverage. The ISR's extensive field of view for ionospheric observations encompasses the full extent of mid-latitude, sub-auroral and auroral features and processes. The unique location of Millstone Hill near the Earth's plasmapause, combined with the wide reach of the Millstone Hill steerable antenna, have made it a premier facility for mid-latitude ionospheric research, magnetospheric studies and thermospheric measurements. In addition to improving our fundamental understanding of the near-Earth environment, this research has immediate relevance to the welfare of people and our technological society since it contributes to the development of improved space weather alerts and storm predictions.

Earth's Plasmasphere Quick Links:

MILLSTONE MADRIGAL
CEDAR MADRIGAL
RADAR STATUS
VIRTUAL RADAR
RADAR DATA ACCESS

 

The earth's plasmasphere is a torus-shaped region
contained within our planet's magnetosphere.

 

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