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Protecting space assets from high energy particles by developing European dynamic modelling and forecasting capabilities

Objective

Solar activity can trigger sporadic bursts of energetic particles and increase the number of high energy (MeV) particles trapped inside the Earth’s radiation belts. These high energy particles cause damage to satellites and are a hazard for manned spaceflight and aviation. They are difficult to predict due to uncertainties over the basic physical processes, and the need to access reliable data in real time. European space policy is committed to the Galileo radionavigation system consisting of 30 satellites, the use of space assets to protect the security of its citizens (GMES), and a strong and competitive space industry. It is therefore imperative that Europe develops the means to protect these space assets from all forms of space weather hazards, and especially now as solar activity will increase to a maximum over the next few years and will increase the hazard risk. This proposal will draw together European and international partners to increase knowledge, reduce uncertainty, and to develop a forecasting capability. We will undertake targeted studies of particle source, transport, acceleration and loss processes in the Earth’s radiation belts to improve understanding of how they respond to solar activity. We will transform research models into space weather models to forecast the radiation belts in near real time, and provide alerts for periods of high risk to stakeholders. We will test models of how solar energetic particles are accelerated by shocks in the solar wind, and are transported through the interplanetary medium, in order to improve engineering tools for predicting the intensity and fluence of solar energetic particle events. We will develop a stakeholder community for valuable feedback and deliver the results in a form accessible to the public. The project will deliver a space weather forecasting capability that will continue beyond the lifetime of the project and which will lay the foundation for an operational system.

Call for proposal

FP7-SPACE-2010-1
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

CP - Collaborative project (generic)

Coordinator

NATURAL ENVIRONMENT RESEARCH COUNCIL
Address
Polaris House, North Star Avenue
SN2 1EU Swindon Wiltshire
United Kingdom
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 693 812,44
Administrative Contact
Ian Briggs (Mr.)

Participants (6)

HELSINGIN YLIOPISTO
Finland
EU contribution
€ 118 191,60
Address
Yliopistonkatu 3
00014 Helsingin Yliopisto
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Satu Väisänen (Ms.)
ILMATIETEEN LAITOS
Finland
EU contribution
€ 360 726,75
Address
Erik Palmenin Aukio 1
00560 Helsinki
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Leena Tuomainen (Ms.)
OFFICE NATIONAL D'ETUDES ET DE RECHERCHES AEROSPATIALES
France
EU contribution
€ 366 000
Address
Chemin De La Huniere
91120 Palaiseau
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Jean-Louis Forget (Mr.)
UNIVERSITAT DE BARCELONA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 163 540,46
Address
Gran Via De Les Corts Catalanes 585
08007 Barcelona
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Xavier Gutierrez (Mr.)
KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT LEUVEN
Belgium
EU contribution
€ 80 800
Address
Oude Markt 13
3000 Leuven
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Myriam Witvrouw (Dr.)
DH CONSULTANCY BVBA
Belgium
EU contribution
€ 182 000
Address
Diestsestraat 133
3000 Leuven
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Daniel Heynderickx (Dr.)