Science Seminars

8/25/2016 – Robert E. Ergun; The Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission in its First Year of Operation

Speaker: Robert E. Ergun (LASP)
Date: Tuesday, Aug 25, 2020
Time: 4:00 PM
Location: SPSC W120

Seminar Abstract:

The Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission has had its first full year in orbit taking science data. The mission, conceived nearly forty years ago, has endured a couple of false starts, undergone several name changes, incorporated many areas of magnetosphere physics, and suffered numerous concept development meetings. In 1998, a NASA science definition team put forward a concept for the MMS mission, which, during instrument selection in 2003, was subsequently narrowed to focus on one prime scientific focus, magnetic reconnection. After more than a decade of development, MMS has proven to be a superlative four-satellite space physics laboratory with the highest cadence and most accurate 3D plasma measurements ever made. The LASP effort includes four essential areas including the a crucial role in the electric field instrument and associated science, a scientific role in the energetic particle instrument, the science operations, and as the lead in the Scientist-In-The-Loop (SITL) data selection effort. Judging from nearly 100 papers published or in progress, the decade-long effort is being handsomely rewarded. In this talk, I review the MMS mission and its history, highlight the recent scientific advances, and talk about future efforts.