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Three NASA Experiments to Test Ionosphere’s Behavior During Solar Eclipse

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Three NASA Experiments to Test Ionosphere’s Behavior During Solar Eclipse

Three NASA-funded experiments will investigate the effects of a solar eclipse on the Earth’s ionosphere on April 8, when a total solar eclipse is expected to cross parts of the United States.

The first project, the Super Dual Auroral Radar Network, is a collection of radars scattered around the world. During the eclipse, three U.S.-based SuperDARN radars will bounce radio waves off of the ionosphere and analyze the returning signal, identifying changes in the layer’s density, temperature and location, NASA said Tuesday.

For the second experiment, amateur radio operators across the U.S. will attempt to send and receive signals to one another during and after the eclipse. The project, dubbed the Ham Radio Science Citizen Investigation, will focus on the effects of a sudden loss of sunlight on radio signals.

Finally, citizen scientists investigating radio signals from space will use radio antenna kits to record solar radio bursts before, during and after the eclipse under the RadioJOVE project. The experiment will build on data gathered from the 2017 eclipse, during which scientists recorded reduced solar radio burst intensities.

The series of experiments was announced around a week after NASA scheduled the UltraViolet EXplorer space telescope mission for 2030. The UVEX space telescope will study sources of UV light in the universe, identify explosions that follow merging neutron stars and study large stars and stellar explosions.

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Category: Space

Tags: Ham Radio Science Citizen Investigation ionosphere NASA radio technology RadioJOVE solar eclipse space Super Dual Auroral Radar Network