National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Living With A Star

Targeted Research and Technology

Focused Science Topics

The stated goal of LWS, that of achieving an understanding of those aspects of the Sun-Earth system that have direct impact on life and society, poses two great challenges for the TR&T program. First, the TR&T must tackle large-scale problems that cross discipline and technique (e.g., data analysis, theory, modeling, etc.) boundaries; and second, the TR&T must identify how this new understanding will have a direct impact on life and society. To address these requirements, the TR&T Steering Committee identifies a set of Focused Science Topics to be emphasized each year. In addition, NASA desires a balance of research investigation techniques for each Topic, including theory, modeling, data analysis, observations, and simulations. Once selected, these investigators will form a team in order to coordinate their research programs (similar to the PIs selected for a NASA hardware mission who form a coordinated science working group). These teams will define a plan for structuring their work into an integrated research program that ideally will address the Focused Science Topic in a much more complete way than any one investigation could by itself. These teams will also define success measures and deliverables for their integrated program, develop strategies for disseminating their results to the science community and NASA, and prepare an integrated final Team Report at the end of the three-year duration of the selected investigations.

The FSTs coordinate large-scale investigations that cross discipline and technique boundaries leading to an understanding of the system linking the Sun to the Solar System both directly and via the heliosphere, planetary magnetospheres, and ionospheres (terrestrial upper atmosphere?)

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Understanding Global-scale Solar Processes and their Implications for the Solar Interior

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Mid-latitude and Equatorial Dynamics of the Ionosphere-Thermosphere System

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Origins, Acceleration and Evolution of the Solar Wind

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Understanding the Response of Magnetospheric Plasma Populations to Solar Wind Structures

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


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Toward a Systems Approach to Energetic Particle Acceleration and Transport on the Sun and in the Heliosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Understanding The Onset of Major Solar Eruptions

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Ion Circulation and Effects on the Magnetosphere and Magnetosphere - Ionosphere Coupling

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Understanding Physical Processes in the Magnetosphere--Ionosphere / Thermosphere / Mesosphere System During Extreme Events

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


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Characterization of the Earth's Radiation Environment

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Studies of the Global Electrodynamics of Ionospheric Disturbances

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Advances Toward a Near Real Time Description of the Solar Atmosphere and Inner Heliosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


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Prediction of the Interplanetary Magnetic Field Vector Bz at 1AU

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Targeted Science Team Research Highlights


Ion-Neutral Interactions in the Topside Ionosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Targeted Science Team Research Highlights


Physics-based methods to predict connectivity of SEP sources to points in the inner heliosphere, tested by location, timing, and longitudinal separation of SEPs

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


» NNH13ZDA001N PDF Download

Thermospheric wind dynamics during geomagnetic storms and their influence on the coupled magnetosphere-ionosphere-thermosphere system

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Targeted Science Team Research Highlights


Short term solar/atmospheric variability and climate

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Targeted Science Team Research Highlights


Connection between Solar Interplanetary Structures and the response of Earth's radiation belts

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Magnetic Flux Ropes from the Sun to the Heliosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Targeted Science Team Research Highlights


Connection between Solar Interplanetary Structures and the response of Earth’s radiation belts

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Targeted Science Team Research Highlights


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Flare Dynamics in the Lower Solar Atmosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Atmosphere-Ionosphere Coupling During Stratospheric Sudden Warmings

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Interaction Between the Magnetotail and the Inner Magnetosphere and its Impacts on the Radiation Belt Environment

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Interaction Between the Magnetotail and the Inner Magnetosphere and the Impact of that Interaction on the Radiation Belt Environment

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


» NNH10ZDA001N PDF Download

Factors that Control the Highly Variable Intensity and Evolution of Solar Particle Events

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Incorporating Plasma Waves in Models of the Radiation Belts and Ring Current

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Jets in the Solar Atmosphere and their Effects in the Heliosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Low-To Mid-Latitude Ionospheric Irregularities and Turbulence

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


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Determine the Behavior of the Plasmasphere and its Influence on the Ionosphere and Magnetosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights
Team Lead: Pontus Brandt


Predict the Onset and Space Weather Impacts of Fast CMEs/Eruptive Flares

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Plasma Neutral Gas Coupling

Focused Science Team Research Highlights
Team Lead: Geoffrey Crowley


Origin and Nature of the Slow Solar Wind, Associated Interplanetary Structures, and SEP Transport

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


» NNH08ZDA001N PDF Download

Integrate Non-MHD/Kinetic Effects on Magnetic Reconnection, Particle Energization, and Plasma Heating into Global Models.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Measure the properties of the solar dynamo that affect solar irradiance and active region generation.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Use Inner Heliospheric Observations to better constrain Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) and Solar Energetic Particle (SEP) Event models.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Determine the possible role of galactic cosmic ray particles as a source for cloud condensation nuclei in the troposphere and lower stratosphere.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Integrate Non-MHD/Kinetic Effects on Magnetic Reconnection, Particle Energization, and Plasma Heating into Global Models

Focused Science Team Research Highlights
Team Lead: Spiro Antiochos


Determine and Quantify the Responses of Atmospheric/Ionospheric Composition and Temperature to Solar XUV Spectral Variability and Energetic Particles

Focused Science Team Research Highlights
Team Lead: Elsayed Talaat


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Focused science topic for Strategic Goal 1 (Solar storms): Exploring the magnetic connection between the photosphere and low corona

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Prediction of the Interplanetary Magnetic Field Vector Bz at L1

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Joint Focus Topics with Planetary Science: Extreme Space Weather Events in the Solar System

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Focused science topics for Strategic Goal 3 (Near Earth Radiation): Toward combined models of acceleration, loss and transport of energetic electrons and protons in the magnetosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Focused science topics for Strategic Goal 4 (Ionosphere-Thermosphere): Determine the sources of daily variability in the thermosphere and ionosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Focused science topics for Strategic Goal 2 (Sun-Climate): Solar Modulation of the galactic cosmic rays and the production of cosmogenic isotope archives of longterm solar activity, used to interpret past climate changes.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Toward combined models of acceleration, loss and transport of energetic electrons and protons in the magnetosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Extreme Space Weather Events in the Solar System

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Solar Modulation of the galactic cosmic rays and the production of cosmogenic isotope archives of long-term solar activity, used to interpret past climate changes.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Determine the sources of daily variability in the thermosphere and ionosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Exploring the Magnetic Connection Between the Photosphere and Low Corona

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


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Predict Emergence of Solar Active Regions Before they are Visible

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Understand how Flares Accelerate Particles near the Sun (i.e., through Shocks and/or Reconnection) and how they Contribute to Large SEP Events

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Effects of Ionospheric-Magnetospheric Plasma Redistribution on Storms

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Investigate the Global Distribution, Sources and Effects of Large Electron Density Gradients at Middle and Low Latitudes

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Solar Origins of Irradiance Variations

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Flares Particle Acceleration Near the Sun and Contribution to Large SEP Events

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Global Distribution, Sources and Effects of Large Density Gradients

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


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Shock acceleration of solar energetic particles by interplanetary CMEs

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Determine the mechanisms that heat and accelerate the solar wind

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Mechanism for solar wind heating and acceleration

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Solar wind plasma entry and transport in the magnetosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Storm effects on the global electrodynamics and the middle and low latitude ionosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Determine the effects of changes in the atmospheric abundance of greenhouse gases on the temperature and dynamics of the upper atmosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Shock acceleration of SEPs by interplanetay CMEs

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


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To quantify the response of thermospheric density and composition to solar and high latitude forcing.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


To determine the topology and evolution of the open magnetic field of the Sun connecting the photosphere through the corona to the heliosphere.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


To determine the mechanisms responsible for the formation and loss of new radiation belts in the slot region in response to geo-effective solar wind structures.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


To determine the solar origins of the plasma and magnetic flux observed in an Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejection.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


To relate solar-energetic particles to their origin at the sun and inner heliosphere.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Formation and loss of new radiation belts in the slot region

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


To quantify the sensitivity of regional and global climate to solar forcing in the full context of the interactive climate system.

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Sensitivity of regional and global climate to solar forcing

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Solar origins of plasma and magnetic flux in an ICME

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Solar-energetic particles origin at the sun and inner heliosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Response of thermospheric density and composition to solar and high latitude forcing

Focused Science Team Research Highlights


Topology and evolution of open magnetic field: photosphere to heliosphere

Focused Science Team Research Highlights