Location: Space, in Sun-synchronous orbit around Earth

Owner: European Space Agency (ESA)


PROBA2 is an ESA micro-satellite launched on November 2, 2009. PROBA stands for 'PRoject for Onboard Autonomy', which is part of ESA's in-orbit Technology Demonstration programme. PROBA2 hosts 17 new technological developments and 4 scientific experiments: two main solar instruments (SWAP and LYRA) and two instruments to observe the space environment in the immediate vicinity of the spacecraft (DSLP and TPMU).

LYRA (Large Yield RAdiometer, formerly LYman alpha RAdiometer) is an ultraviolet irradiance monitor that observes the Sun at high cadence (nominal sampling rate of 50 ms) in four passbands, chosen for their relevance to solar physics, aeronomy and space weather. This instrument can, among others, detect solar flares and analyze the distribution of some atmospheric constituents of the Earth atmosphere.

SWAP (Sun Watcher using Active Pixel System detector and Image Processing) is a small EUV telescope that images the solar corona at a cadence of roughly 2 minutes with a bandpass centered around 17.4 nm, corresponding to an emission temperature of 1 million degrees. SWAP has a very wide field of view spanning 54 arcmin, which is augmented by the satellite's ability to off-point in case of interesting solar activity. SWAP monitors events in the lower solar corona, such as coronal mass ejections, that may be relevant for space weather.



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