BackForwardInstrument:  SWE 

Instrument details
Acronym SWE
Full name Solar Wind Experiment
Purpose To measure ions and electrons in the solar wind and the foreshock regions.
Short description Assemblage of several units including two Faraday cup ion detectors to measure the solar wind protons and alpha particles at energy/charge up to 8 keV. Energy ranges: 0.005-22 keV (electrons), 0.007-22 keV (protons), and 0.14-44 keV/n (ions with Z from 2 to 26)
Background Part of a package of instruments to observe the solar wind
Scanning Technique Interplanetary space observation from the L1 Lagrange libration point
Resolution N/A
Coverage / Cycle Nearly full interplanetary space
Mass Power Data Rate

 

Providing Agency NASA
Instrument Maturity Flown on an R&D satellite
Utilization Period: 1996-11-15 to ≥2020
Last update: 2017-06-05
Detailed characteristics
Satellites this instrument is flying on

Note: a red tag indicates satellites no longer operational, a green tag indicates operational satellites, a blue tag indicates future satellites

Instrument classification
  • Solar and space environment monitors
  • Energetic particle spectrometer
Mission objectives
Primary mission objectives
  • Solar wind density
  • Solar wind temperature
  • Solar wind velocity
Secondary mission objectives
  • Alpha particles differential directional flux
  • Electron differential directional flux
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Tentative Evaluation of Measurements

The following list indicates which measurements can typically be retrieved from this category of instrument. To see a full Gap Analysis by Variable, click on the respective variable.

Note: table can be sorted by clicking on the column headers
VariableRelevance for measuring this variableOperational limitationsExplanation
Electron differential directional flux3 - highNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space, low energy (up to 40 keV)
Proton differential directional flux3 - highNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space, low energy (up to 40 keV)
Alpha particles differential directional flux2 - very highNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space. Low-medium energy range (<10 up to 100 MeV/n)
Solar wind density1 - primaryNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space. Infrerred from Proton. Electron and Alpha-particle spectroscopy
Solar wind temperature1 - primaryNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space. Infrerred from Proton. Electron and Alpha-particle spectroscopy
Solar wind velocity1 - primaryNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space. Infrerred from Proton. Electron and Alpha-particle spectroscopy
Heavy ion flux energy and mass spectrum4 - fairNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space. Low-medium energy range (<10 up to 100 MeV/n)
Heavy ion angular flux energy and mass spectrum4 - fairNo specific limitation.Interplanetary space. Low-medium energy range (<10 up to 100 MeV/n)