Van Allen Probes - Instruments: EMFISIS
Electric and Magnetic Field Instrument Suite and Integrated Science (EMFISIS)
Principal Investigator: Craig Kletzing, University of Iowa, Iowa City
EMFISIS helps differentiate which of many processes help provide energy and speed to the particles in the belt or lead to their being ejected from the belts altogether. The instrument focuses specifically on the magnetic fields and plasma waves – that is, waves carrying electromagnetic fields that can charge gas particles – in the region.
Past experiments have only been able to monitor such waves in a single direction, but EMFISIS will measure electric and magnetic field components in all three directions. The magnetic fields are measured with three coils of wire, known as solenoids, oriented as if they were the 90-degree angles at the corner of a cube. EMFISIS also incorporates the electric field information gathered by the booms on the EFW instrument.
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