Objectives
Characterize and simulate multiple chains of physical processes that link the Sun-Earth system, to advance space science and enable Naval/Marine Corps and wider DoD operations to better account for, adapt to, and exploit operational impacts of the space environment due to electrons, ions, and neutrals.

Investigate:

  1. Climatology, weather resulting from cycles: solar, seasonal, etc
  2. Disturbances following solar-driven geomagnetic storms
  3. Data products utilized in current DoD environmental sensing
  4. Effects on space environment applications due to the non-uniform ionosphere and plasmasphere

Approach
Conduct data analyses, model simulations and validation in these conceptual time frames:

  • Intervals of days-to-weeks: Whole Heliosphere Interval 2008
  • Comparative solar minima epochs: 2008 vs 1996
  • Episodes of geomagnetic disturbances: e.g. 3-5 April 2010
  • Solar Cycle 23: 1996-2010

In each case:

  • Comprehensive specification of Sun and heliosphere from surface magnetic fields to source surface, with heliospheric propagation to L1 and magnetopause (boundary of geospace)
  • Multiple geospace simulations with different scenarios for EUV irradiance, heliospheric inputs, thermospheric density, winds, electrodynamic coupling, lower boundary conditions
  • Detailed comparisons with observations, e.g. TEC, ionosondes, IRI, UV-remote sensing, GAIM, drag-derived neutral densities
  • Simulations made with forecast inputs

Deliverable/Value/Accomplishment
An in-house, first-principles, validated DoD HPC simulation model and suite of specification runs to….

  • Provide new knowledge of geophysical “targets” (SAO, winds, electrodynamics, storms, solar rotation, and solar cycle)
  • Quantify limitations in current operational capabilities
  • Investigate future emerging science and DoD space weather issues
  • Improve platforms to assimilate observations for ops and forecasting
  • Specify requirements for future DoD space weather instruments