Welcome to the website of the SolACES Mission.

solaces installation

How does the cyclical fluctuation of solar intensity influence the climatic conditions in the near-earth atmosphere? What patterns are the fluctuations based on? Knowledge about the intensity of extreme ultraviolet radiation (EUV) may help in finding answers to these questions. Energy-rich EUV produces ionized gas (plasma) in the near-earth ionosphere and thermosphere. It therefore influences climatic conditions on the Earth as well as the dispersion of electromagnetic signals that provide the foundation for satellite-based navigation systems such as GPS and Galileo.

The SolACES space spectrometer developed by Fraunhofer IPM measures EUV radiation with hitherto unrivalled accuracy. As the first space spectrometer, SolACES has an autocalibration system. It therefore achieves extremely low error rates despite the considerable degree of hardware degradation caused by conditions in space. SolACES was installed on the International Space Station (ISS) in February 2008. The quality of the measuring data is so good that the European Space Authority, ESA, has already extended the duration of the measuring campaign twice. By the year 2013, SolACES will be supplying climate researchers with precise data on solar activity. In the future the data are to be made accessible to the public in a database.