Solar Maximum Mission

Solar Maximum Mission

The Solar Maximum Mission satellite (or SolarMax) was designed to investigate solar phenomenon, particularly solar flares. It was launched on February 14, 1980.

Whilst not unique in this endeavour, the SMM was notable in that its useful life compared with similar spacecraft was significantly increased by the direct intervention of a manned space mission. In 1984 the Space Shuttle Challenger intercepted it, maneuvering the SMM into the shuttle's payload bay for maintenance and repairs. SMM had been fitted with a shuttle "grapple fixture" so that the shuttle's robot arm could grab it in anticipation of possible repairs. The mission is depicted in the 1985 IMAX movie The Dream Is Alive.

Significantly, the SMM's ACRIM instrument package showed that, contrary to expectations, the Sun is actually brighter during the sunspot cycle maximum (when the greatest number of dark 'sunspots' appear). This is because sunspots are surrounded by bright features called faculae, which more than cancel the darkening effect of the sunspot.

The Solar Maximum Mission ended on December 2 1989 when the spacecraft re-entered the atmosphere and burned up.

The major scientific findings from SMM are presented in several review articles in the Monograph edited by Strong et al. (1999).

* Strong, Keith T.; Saba, Julia L. R.; Haisch, Bernhard M.; Schmelz, Joan T. (1999) The many faces of the sun : a summary of the results from NASA's Solar Maximum Mission. Springer

ee also

*Solar and Heliospheric Observatory

External links

* [ JPL] , SMM
* [ Marshall Space Flight Center] , SMM
* [ SMM C/P Coronal Mass Ejections]
* [ Sun|trek website] An educational resource for teachers and students about the Sun and its effect on the Earth

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Solar Maximum Mission — Solar Max Land: USA Behörde: NASA NSSDC ID: 1980 014A …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Solar Maximum Mission — Vue d artiste de Solar Maximum Mission Caractéristiques Organisation NASA …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Solar Maximum Mission — Representación artística de SMM Organización NASA Estado Reentrado en la atmósfera Fecha de …   Wikipedia Español

  • Solar Max — Solar Maximum Mission Solar Maximum Mission Vue d artiste de Solar Maximum Mission Caractéristiques Organisation NAS …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Solar variation — Solar variations are changes in the amount of solar radiation emitted by the Sun. There are periodic components to these variations, the principal one being the 11 year solar cycle (or sunspot cycle), as well as aperiodic fluctuations. Solar… …   Wikipedia

  • Solar — means appertaining to the Sun, our planet s star. Solar also has other meanings. Related to energy * Active solar * Passive solar ** Passive solar building design * Solar cell, a device that directly creates electricity from solar energy * Solar… …   Wikipedia

  • Solar Max — can be an abbreviation of two things: * The solar maximum period of greatest activity of the Sun * The Solar Maximum Mission satellite to investigate solar phenomena …   Wikipedia

  • Solar and Heliospheric Observatory — Infobox Space telescope name = Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) caption = organization = ESA / NASA alt names = nssdc id = location = L1 orbit type = height = 1.5×106 km (heliocentric) period = 1 Earth year velocity = accel gravity =… …   Wikipedia

  • Solar and Heliospheric Observatory — SOHO wird für den Start vorbereitet SOHO steht für „Solar and Heliospheric Observatory“ (Sonnen und Heliosphären Observatorium) und ist eine Raumsonde bzw. ein Weltraumobservatorium von ESA und NASA …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Solar sail — Solar sails (also called light sails or photon sails, especially when they use light sources other than the Sun) are a proposed form of spacecraft propulsion using large membrane mirrors. Radiation pressure is about 10 5 Pa at Earth s distance… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.