The overarching goal of this award is to study, together with the other coordinated PENGUIn projects, the multi-scale, complex global solar wind-magnetosphere-ionosphere electrodynamic natural system that can impact a variety of human technological systems in space and on the ground. To forecast and thus mitigate that impact, it is necessary to develop accurate physical models of the Sun-Earth system, which is a major goal of the National Space Weather Program. This goal is hampered, however, by the lack of sufficient data to validate global models, particularly in the Southern hemisphere. Therefore, deploying closely-spaced chain of geophysical instruments in the Antarctic makes possible geomagnetically conjugate multi-instrument studies utilizing data with high temporal and spatial resolution from both the Southern and Northern hemispheres. Important aspects of this investigation include (1) the utilization of a collaborative federation of space research instrument operators in both polar regions to improve spatial coverage and access to global data sets, (2) the deployment of autonomous low-power instrument systems along the 40 degree geomagnetic meridian in the Antarctic to improve the spatial distribution of the federated instrument arrays, and (3) near real-time access to the remote Antarctic station measurements through satellite telemetry. The developed technology could be used to support measurement programs in other geophysical disciplines. The project's data are important to several major research initiatives of national importance, including the NSF's GEM and CEDAR programs, the NASA's "Living With a Star" and THEMIS satellite programs, as well as the National Space Weather Program. The data sets will be made available to scientists worldwide via the World Wide Web access while stored in the PENGUIn program and THEMIS satellite databases. The project will train graduate students and post-docs with the development and operation of the deployed instruments, as well as with space weather science investigations. Use of these data to validate space weather models can provide benefit to society as a whole as it aides to protect various navigation, communications, and defense technologies from severe space weather events.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Polar Programs (PLR)
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Vladimir O. Papitashvili
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United States
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