MagVector (MAGVECTOR) - 09.13.17

Overview | Description | Applications | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

ISS Science for Everyone

Science Objectives for Everyone
MAGVECTOR investigates how Earth’s magnetic field interacts with an electrical conductor. Using extremely sensitive magnetic sensors placed around and above a conductor, researchers can gain insight into ways that the magnetic field influences how conductors work. This research not only helps improve future International Space Station experiments and electrical experiments, but it could offer insights into how magnetic fields influence electrical conductors in general – the backbone of our technology.
Science Results for Everyone
Information Pending

The following content was provided by Detlev Konigorski, Volker Schmid, and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.
Information provided courtesy of the Erasmus Experiment Archive.
Experiment Details


Principal Investigator(s)
Detlev Konigorski, Astrium GmbH, Germany
Volker Schmid, Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V. DLR, Germany

F. Werfel, Adelwitz Technologiezentrum GmbH (ATZ), Germany

Information Pending

Sponsoring Space Agency
European Space Agency (ESA)

Sponsoring Organization
Information Pending

Research Benefits
Scientific Discovery

ISS Expedition Duration
March 2014 - March 2016; March 2016 - February 2018; -

Expeditions Assigned

Previous Missions
Information Pending

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Experiment Description

Research Overview
The MAGVECTOR investigation serves the assessment of 3 tasks:
• assessment of the ISS environment with regard to it suitability as experimental astrophysical laboratory,
• warm reference measurements with fair conductivity,
• cold measurements with good electrical conductivity.

The assessment of the ISS environment task is designed to understand the magnetic environment surrounding MAGVECTOR when installed in the European Drawer Rack (EDR). The magnetic field sensors measure the static disturbances from magnetic sources in neighboring racks, e.g. strong current sources etc. and the dynamic background from the magnetic field of Earth as it passes through the ISIS drawer.

The suitability of the ISS environment is considered as evident, when the dynamic component (the terrestrial magnetic field) can be detected by the MAGVECTOR sensors while all neighboring sources remain unchanged, i.e. no current changes in neighboring circuits. This shall be measured at least before first installation. These data supports later data analysis.

The warm reference measurement task gives insight into the time scale and magnitude of changes of the magnetic field of Earth inside the European Drawer Rack (EDR) along the flight path. These data supports later data analysis. This measurement is also used to detect any sensor offset between the Ram and Wake side of the electrical conductor.

The cold measurement with good conductivity task gives insight into the interaction between the good conductor and the passing by of the magnetic field of Earth inside the EDR along the flight path. 1- and 3-axis sensors are employed on the Ram and Wake side of the electrical conductor. Furthermore, the sensors are installed in different heights above the Ram and Wake side to achieve an improved 3-D field assessment above the electrical conductor.

Information Pending

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Space Applications
MAGVECTOR represents a new type of utilisation of the ISS as an astrophysical experiment lab rather than astrophysical observatory (AMS 02),microgravity laboratory, or a hub of manned space activities. And, a better understanding of the interaction of a moving magnetic field with a good conductor paves the way towards the realisation of new applications.

Earth Applications
Information Pending

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Operational Requirements and Protocols
The time for science measurement is not less than 90 minutes (1 orbit).

The minimum measurement campaign shall contain two weeks continuously to fulfill the basic scientific goals. Before installation, it would be good to gain an overview of the magnetic field at the location. This can be done with a hand held sensor, which could be delivered with the experiment. In every case this measurement on the location should be done on the ground with the Electro Magnetic Levitator (EML) training facility, to get information about the influence on the MAGVECTOR location.

The experiment should stay in the EDR as long as possible for long-time measurement, due to the availability of the drawer place. The long-time measurements could then be taken in an alternating mode with EML. After this the MAGVECTOR Experiment is stored for decommissioning and destructive re-entry.

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Decadal Survey Recommendations

Information Pending

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Results/More Information

Information Pending

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Related Websites

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