NASA rockets ready for launch from Norway

Missiles Andøya NASAMissile, Photo:

NASA rockets ready for launch from Norway

Four research rockets from NASA are ready to be launched from Norway during the next week. The rockets are the first in a row of twelve.


The rockets will investigate the upper part of the Earth’s atmosphere and result from an international collaboration to get more rockets in the air at the same time. A key part of the project is also to simplify data sharing between partners in the project, writes University of Oslo’s online newspaper, Titan.

The Earth is surrounded by a magnetic field that protects against the flow of charged particles from the sun, which is called the solar wind. Two locations on Earth, in the polar regions, have magnetic field holes, a kind of funnel where the solar particles can flow down and come into direct contact with the Earth’s atmosphere.

Northern Norway and Svalbard have a unique location in order to gain access to the northern region, and preparations for the launch have taken place for a while.

Four NASA rockets are first out, two from Svalbard and two from Andøya. The four will be shot approximately at the same time in the period from 4 to 18 December, depending on weather conditions and favourable conditions in the ionosphere.

Three of the NASA rockets to be launched now in December have space instruments from the University of Oslo on board.

Makes data sharing easier

A central part of the project is to simplify data sharing between partners and make data available to researchers outside the project.
Postdoctoral Francesca DiMare develops a separate analytics tool for data for rocket measurements.
I previously made a model for analysing data for turbulence on a much larger scale, for the connection between the solar wind and the Earth’s magnetic field, but now I adapt it to the rocket data, she says.
© NTB scanpix / #Norway Today