24/7 Space News
SOLAR SCIENCE
NASA funds 3 citizen science projects to study 2024 US solar eclipse
file illustration
NASA funds 3 citizen science projects to study 2024 US solar eclipse
by Staff Writers
Greenbelt MD (SPX) Jul 27, 2023

NASA has awarded funding for three science teams to conduct citizen science investigations as a total solar eclipse sweeps across North America on April 8, 2024. In these experiments, volunteers will help study the Sun and its ethereal outer atmosphere, called the corona, which is revealed when the Moon completely covers the Sun's bright disk.

"During next year's total eclipse, hundreds of volunteers will capture images of the Sun and its corona to help answer real science question about our star and how it affects us," said program scientist and eclipse lead at NASA Headquarters, Kelly Korreck.

"These three projects will build upon citizen scientific efforts from the 2017 solar eclipse and allow a multitude of ways to participate in the eclipse during the Heliophysics Big Year," said NASA Heliophysics citizen science lead, Elizabeth MacDonald. "Volunteers make this important research possible, and we look forward to seeing what they help reveal."

The DEB Initiative: Documenting the Corona Moment by Moment
In visible wavelengths of light, the Sun's surface is much brighter than its corona. During a total solar eclipse, however, observers can see the corona - and scientists can investigate how solar material moves out from the Sun to form the solar wind, an ever-flowing particle stream that impacts Earth and our entire solar system.

The Dynamic Eclipse Broadcast (DEB) Initiative, led by Bob Baer and Matt Penn of Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, will organize volunteers as they capture images of the corona during the 2024 eclipse. Using identical instruments at more than 70 different locations across North America, participants will document the moment-by-moment appearance of the corona throughout the eclipse. Comparing these images across locations, scientists will track plumes of solar material in the difficult-to-study inner corona, estimating their speed and rate of acceleration and linking these observations to those from NASA spacecraft.

The project expands on the team's efforts during the 2017 total solar eclipse, this time including observation sites outside the path of totality, where part of the solar disk will remain visible. Images from these locations will reveal the source of solar material later observed as outflows in the corona, allowing the team to trace them back to their origins on the Sun.

CATE 2024: Capturing Polarized Views of the Corona
With the help of over 35 volunteer science teams across the U.S., the Citizen Continental-America Telescopic Eclipse (CATE) 2024 experiment aims to study structures and changes in the corona and solar wind. This project, led by Amir Caspi of the Southwest Research Institute in Colorado, will do that by taking images of the corona in polarized light.

Light travels in waves, but those waves can be oriented in different directions, or polarization angles. Similar to how some sunglasses can filter out certain light polarizations, the CATE 2024 cameras will record in four different polarizations. This will help measure the flow of the solar wind, identify signatures of an explosive process thought to generate the solar wind, and understand how structures in the corona are connected.

Each participating team will receive a camera, a telescope, tracking mount, and other supporting equipment. Their images will be compiled into a 60-minute high-contrast movie that scientists will compare with other eclipse observations, including those from NASA space missions. This will help scientists study the processes that shape the heating, structure, and evolution of the corona.

CATE 2024 builds on the Citizen CATE 2017 experiment by using cameras that have a larger field of view and are sensitive to polarization, allowing them to make unique measurements of coronal structures and flows.

Eclipse Megamovie 2024: Recording Dynamics Across the Corona
Total solar eclipses not only reveal the Sun's corona but can also show the thin layer of the Sun's atmosphere just below the corona, called the chromosphere. Taking advantage of this unique view, the Eclipse Megamovie 2024 project, led by Laura Peticolas of Sonoma State University in California, will enlist citizen scientists to explore and characterize how superheated gas (plasma) flows through the corona and chromosphere, as well as through the jets, or tendrils of plasma, in those regions.

For this project, at least 100 trained volunteers will take photographs of the total solar eclipse, using cameras on equatorial mounts to compensate for Earth's rotation. Afterward, the project will provide over 1,200 eclipse photos to scientists and the public. Eclipse Megamovie 2024 will challenge volunteer photographers and data analysts to participate in an image-processing competition to uncover plasma flows and jets in the images.

Eclipse Megamovie 2024 will also compare observations of the eclipse with results from the 2017 Eclipse Megamovie. Peticolas expects that with an increased number of photographs that have different exposure times, the processed images from 2024 will be more visually stunning than those from 2017. Since the Sun is becoming more active - approaching a period known as solar maximum - citizen scientists will also likely capture more activity in the corona and chromosphere than in 2017, providing a wealth of new information.

Related Links
Solar eclipse - April 8, 2024
Solar Science News at SpaceDaily

Subscribe Free To Our Daily Newsletters
Tweet

RELATED CONTENT
The following news reports may link to other Space Media Network websites.
SOLAR SCIENCE
NASA selects 5 experiments for 2024 total solar eclipse
Washington DC (SPX) Jun 21, 2023
A total solar eclipse will darken a swath of North America as the Moon blocks the light of the Sun for a few minutes on April 8, 2024. In addition to casting a breathtaking, passing shadow over the heads of millions of people, this total solar eclipse gives scientists a unique opportunity to study the Sun, Earth, and their interactions. NASA will fund five interdisciplinary science projects for the 2024 eclipse to make the most of this opportunity. The projects, which are led by researchers at dif ... read more

SOLAR SCIENCE
NASA Named One of America's Top Employers for Women

NASA Launches Beta Site; On-Demand Streaming, App Update Coming Soon

Keeping your underwear clean on the Moon

Better SAFER than sorry

SOLAR SCIENCE
The world's largest ComSat ever built launches on a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket

Marotta Controls Delivers 30,000th CoRe Valve to SpaceX

SpaceX successfully launches 22 Starlink satellites

SpaceX misses attempt for record-breaking 'double-launch' attempt

SOLAR SCIENCE
Deep Impact: Sol 3899

Making the Most of Limited Power: Sols 3900-3901

Making the most of limited power: Sols 3900-3901

Sols 3895-3897: Navigating Through the Crater Cluster

SOLAR SCIENCE
China's Space Station Opens Doors to Global Scientific Community

China's Lunar Mission targets manned landing by 2030

Shenzhou XVI crew set to conduct their first EVA

Timeline unveiled for China's advanced manned spacecraft's inaugural flight

SOLAR SCIENCE
Iridium Board of Directors approves additional share repurchase program

Future of Satellite Internet: OneWeb vs Starlink

JUPITER 3 set to revolutionize satellite connectivity across the Americas

Leaf Space secures additional edging closer to seamless satellite connectivity

SOLAR SCIENCE
Aeolus: a historic end to a trailblazing mission

European wind-mapping satellite returned safely to Earth

Beyond Gravity to provide off-the-shelf computer to Quantum Space's Ranger multi-purpose vehicle

Imaging shows how solar-powered microbes turn CO2 into bioplastic

SOLAR SCIENCE
Water discovered in rocky planet-forming zone offers clues on habitability

Using cosmic weather to study which worlds could support life

Violent Atmosphere Gives Rare Look at Early Planetary Life

NASA lab hopes to find life's building blocks in asteroid sample

SOLAR SCIENCE
NASA's Juno Is Getting Ever Closer to Jupiter's Moon Io

James Webb Space Telescope sees Jupiter moons in a new light

SwRI team identifies giant swirling waves at the edge of Jupiter's magnetosphere

First ultraviolet data collected by ESA's JUICE mission

Subscribe Free To Our Daily Newsletters


ADVERTISEMENT



The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2023 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Statement Our advertisers use various cookies and the like to deliver the best ad banner available at one time. All network advertising suppliers have GDPR policies (Legitimate Interest) that conform with EU regulations for data collection. By using our websites you consent to cookie based advertising. If you do not agree with this then you must stop using the websites from May 25, 2018. Privacy Statement. Additional information can be found here at About Us.