Powering the Imaging on IMAGE

Powering the Imaging on IMAGE

Image by jurvetson
The IMAGE spacecraft was launched from Vandenberg AFB in 2000 to study the aurora borealis or “Northern Lights”. IMAGE was the first satellite mission dedicated to imaging the Earth’s magnetosphere, the region of space controlled by the Earth’s magnetic field and containing extremely tenuous plasmas of both solar and terrestrial origin. IMAGE is an acronym for Imager for Magnetopause-to-Aurora Global Exploration.

This is the high voltage power converter module for the Far-Ultraviolet (FUV) imaging instrument in the IMAGE satellite. It converts 28V to 5000V DC for the Wideband Imaging Camera (WIC). The WIC images the whole Earth and the auroral oval from satellite distances greater than 4 Earth radii to the center of the Earth. It selects the spectral range between 140 nm and 160 nm in the ultraviolet part of the optical spectrum.

Here is a good intro video on the science, and subsequent satellite missions: “What triggers the sudden, magnificent movements of the aurorae that appear around the far poles of the earth? It’s been a nagging question of space science for decades.”

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4 Responses to Powering the Imaging on IMAGE

  1. jurvetson says:

    Here is the sister flight unit, attached to the imaging instrument:Image with HVPS FUV images of an aurora rippling across Earth


    Aurora_as_seen_by_IMAGEThe NASA “Poetry” site on the mission even has a tough of synesthesia… =) imageEDbanner and a song! To See the Invisible ♫ ♪ IMAGE Payload Desk with all of the instruments


    deck_map All of the technical diagrams and schematics for the spacecraft are available here, and this module is under the heading “WIC High Voltage Power Supply Assembly”. They also have a series of spacecraft assembly photos.

  2. Niall Oswald says:

    Cockroft-Walton voltage multiplier?

  3. jurvetson says:

    Good eye! And here is the relevant stack: Thinking Outside the Plane

  4. solerena says:

    very cool, love the song and the aurora video… these are so amazing!

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