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The Solar Connections Observatory for Planetary EnvironmentsThe NASA Sun-Earth Connection theme roadmap calls for comparative study of how the planets, comets, and local interstellar medium (LISM) interact with the Sun and respond to solar variability. Through such a study we advance our understanding of basic physical plasma and gas dynamic processes, thus increasing our predictive capabilities for the terrestrial, planetary, and interplanetary environments where future remote and human exploration will occur. Because the other planets have lacked study initiatives comparable to the terrestrial ITM, LWS, and EOS programs, our understanding of the upper atmospheres and near space environments on these worlds is far less detailed than our knowledge of the Earth. To close this gap we propose a mission to study {\it all) of the solar interacting bodies in our planetary system out to the heliopause with a single remote sensing space observatory, the Solar Connections Observatory for Planetary Environments (SCOPE). SCOPE consists of a binocular EUV/FUV telescope operating from a remote, driftaway orbit that provides sub-arcsecond imaging and broadband medium resolution spectro-imaging over the 55-290 nm bandpass, and high (R>10$^{5}$ resolution H Ly-$\alpha$ emission line profile measurements of small scale planetary and wide field diffuse solar system structures. A key to the SCOPE approach is to include Earth as a primary science target. From its remote vantage point SCOPE will be able to observe auroral emission to and beyond the rotational pole. The other planets and comets will be monitored in long duration campaigns centered when possible on solar opposition when interleaved terrestrial-planet observations can be used to directly compare the response of both worlds to the same solar wind stream and UV radiation field. Using a combination of observations and MHD models, SCOPE will isolate the different controlling parameters in each planet system and gain insight into the underlying physical processes that define the solar connection.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Oliversen, Ronald J. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD United States)
Harris, Walter M. (Wisconsin Univ. WI United States)
Oegerle, William R.
Date Acquired
August 20, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2002
Subject Category
Solar Physics
Meeting Information
American Geophysical Union 2002 Spring Meeting(Washington, DC)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.