How does the SDO help us understand the Sun?

SDO will help us to understand the how and why of the Sun’s magnetic changes. It will determine how the magnetic field is generated and structured, and how the stored magnetic energy is released into the heliosphere and geospace.

How will SDO help us deal with space weather?

SDO will measure the irradiance of the Sun that produces the ionosphere. It will also measure the sources of that radiation and how they evolve. Charged particles are created in our atmosphere by the intense X-rays produced by a solar flare.

What does NASA SDO stand for?

Since its launch in 2010, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, has studied how the Sun creates solar activity and drives space weather — the dynamic conditions in space that impact the entire solar system, including Earth.

What instruments are on the SDO?

WHAT SCIENCE INSTRUMENTS WILL SDO CARRY? SDO will carry three science instruments: Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA), Extreme Ultraviolet Variability Experiment (EVE), and Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI).

When was the SDO spacecraft launched?

February 11, 2010Solar Dynamics Observatory / Launch date

How big is SDO?

Figure 5: Illustration of the SDO spacecraft (image credit: NASA)

Spacecraft mass Total mass of the spacecraft at launch is 3200 kg (payload 270 kg, fuel 1400 kg)
Spacecraft dimensions – The overall length along the sun-pointing axis is 4.5 m, and each side is 2.22 m – The span of the extended solar panels is 6.25 m

Where is SDO located?

The ground station consists of two dedicated (redundant) 18-meter radio antennas in White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, constructed specifically for SDO. Mission controllers operate the spacecraft remotely from the Mission Operations Center at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.