Exploring Where Earth's Weather Meets Space Weather

The Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON), the newest addition to NASA’s fleet of Heliophysics satellites, launched on October 10, 2019 at 9:59 p.m. EDT. Led by UC Berkeley, scientists and engineers around the world came together to make ICON a reality.

The goal of the ICON mission is to understand the tug-of-war between Earth’s atmosphere and the space environment. In the "no mans land" of the ionosphere, a continuous struggle between solar forcing and Earth’s weather systems drive extreme and unpredicted variability. ICON will investigate the forces at play in the near-space environment, leading the way in understanding disturbances that can lead to severe interference with communications and GPS signals.

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Claire Raftery
/ Categories: UC Berkeley, Reviews

ICON Selected to be NASA's next Explorer Mission

Update — NASA has selected ICON to be the next Heliophysics Explorer satellite mission. The Ionospheric Connection Explorer was selected along with a Mission Of Opportunity (GOLD; Global-scale Observations of the Limb and Disk) to move forward into development (Phase B). ICON, to be lead by the University of California, Berkeley will provide NASA’s Heliophysics division with a powerful new capability to determine the conditions in space modified by weather on the planet, and to understand the way space weather events grow to envelop regions of our planet with dense ionospheric plasma.

Link to the official announcement.

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ICON skin is based on Greytness by Adammer
Background image, courtesy of NASA, is a derivitave of photograph taken by D. Pettit from the ISS, used under Creative Commons license