been three solar rotations during the SORCE mission, of which
the last two solar rotations have been observed continuously by
the SORCE instruments. This figure shows the time series of the
bright solar Lyman-a emission at 121.6 nm from the SORCE XPS and
also shows the 10.7 cm radio flux (F10.7) that is often used as
a proxy for the solar UV radiation. The XPS values are preliminary
results as validation is still in progress.
The Sun was especially
active between days 2003/076 and 2003/079 (Mar. 17-20) when several
large flares occurred on the Sun. This figure shows that the solar
X-ray radiation (0.1-7 nm) changed by more than a factor of 10
for a couple of these flares. The changes are less, as expected,
for the solar UV radiation, showing an increase of about 10% for
the Lyman-a emission during the large flare on day 2003/076. Most
of this flare energy is absorbed in the atmosphere below 100 km,
so the photochemistry affected by these flares include NO and
H2O, which in turn affect the O3 chemistry in the mesosphere.
All spacecraft systems are performing exceptionally well. The
spacecraft is in its nominal Sun pointing mode.
Operations Center –
The Operations Center has two contacts per day with SORCE between
8 a.m. and 10 p.m. Two staff people (one professional and one
student) are on hand to receive the data and to make sure the
outgoing commands are sent. The SORCE spacecraft and instruments
generate approximately 120 Megabytes (MB) of raw telemetry data
per day. Since the launch, these data are routinely delivered
to the Goddard Space Flight Center for permanent archival. Delivery
activities continue to operate smoothly, with minor adjustments
being made to associated science data processing software to improve
performance and diagnostic capabilities.
SORCE team members are producing a weekly SORCE Status Report
to document progress during the mission. It summarizes the spacecraft
activity, ground contacts, the instrument measurements, spacecraft
and instrument planning, and data processing. This report is available
on the SORCE web site at http://lasp.colorado.edu/sorce.
Member Retired –
It’s official! George Lawrence celebrated his retirement
with family, friends, and co-workers at a dinner in his honor
on March 31st. Pictures from the evening are available on the
LASP website at lasp.colorado.edu/general_information/lawrence_retirement.html.
Fortunately for LASP, George is very interested in SORCE data
analysis and we plan to see him back at LASP part-time after a