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NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

New NASA Mission Concept Aimed at Studying Why Planets Lose their Atmospheres

14 Nov 2017, 15:46 UTC
New NASA Mission Concept Aimed at Studying Why Planets Lose their Atmospheres NASA

In the proposed mission that some believe is a potential keystone in the study of the Sun and its effects on planetary atmospheres, the team at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, is advancing a dual-satellite, polar-orbiting mission to study the universal processes that control atmospheric erosion and its interaction with stellar winds, the continuously flowing stream of charged particles released from the Sun’s corona.

Called Mechanisms of Energetic Mass Ejection-Explorer, or MEME-X, the mission was one of five proposals that received Phase-A funding under NASA’s Small Explorer Program. NASA also selected another Goddard mission, Focusing Optics X-ray Solar Imager [link to story]. Of the five, NASA is expected to select one or two for development and implementation.

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