Professor Greg Earle, Virginia Tech
Title: "Investigations of Plasma and Neutral Gas Dynamics in LEO"
(Science Motivation for the LAICE CubeSat Mission)
Abstract: Plasma and neutral gas dynamics are often coupled in the ionosphere/
thermosphere system over a wide range of spatial scales. This talk will present examples of such coupling from observations made by DE-2, DMSP, and Streak-1. Under impulsive forcing, there are other instances
in which the large-scale ion and neutral motions are not strongly coupled. Evidence of these behaviors will be provided using the plasma and neutral data from the thermal instrumentation aboard the C/NOFS satellite.
The contrast between these disparate observations leads to some interesting questions, some of which are the focus of a new NSF-CubeSat project that will launch in 2015/2016. The talk will culminate in a brief introduction to this mission and how it will help us to better understand ion-neutral coupling in the low-Earth orbit environment.
Events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.