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01101001
2008-Oct-16, 02:43 AM
http://ibex.swri.edu/multimedia/0806logo-tn.jpg (http://ibex.swri.edu/multimedia/0806logo.jpg)

NASA IBEX Mission (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ibex/index.html)
NASA IBEX Mission Launch Blog (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ibex/launch/launch_blog.html) (Active about 2 hours before launch)
Southwest Research Institute: IBEX Mission (http://ibex.swri.edu/)

Wikipedia: Interstellar Boundary Explorer (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interstellar_Boundary_Explorer)


The Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) is a NASA satellite that will make the first map of the boundary between the Solar System and interstellar space. The mission is part of NASA's Small Explorer program. IBEX will be launched on a Pegasus XL rocket no earlier than October 5, 2008. The nominal mission baseline duration will be two years to image the entire solar system boundary.

The mission is being led by the Southwest Research Institute, with Los Alamos National Laboratory and Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center serving as Co-Investigator institutions responsible for the IBEX-Hi and IBEX-Lo sensors respectively. Orbital Sciences Corporation will provide the spacecraft bus and will be the location for spacecraft environmental testing.

NASA Launch Schedule (http://www.nasa.gov/missions/highlights/schedule.html)


Date: Oct. 19
Mission: IBEX
Launch Vehicle: Orbital Sciences Pegasus XL Rocket
Launch Site: Reagan Test Site, Kwajalein Atoll
Launch Time: 1:48 p.m. EDT
Launch Window:1:44 p.m. to 1:52 p.m. EDT
Description: IBEX's science objective is to discover the global interaction between the solar wind and the interstellar medium and will achieve this objective by taking a set of global energetic neutral atom images that will answer four fundamental science questions.

NASA Media Advisory: IBEX Launch Webcast (http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2008/oct/HQ_M08-205_IBEX_Webcast.html):


Live coverage of the IBEX launch will be provided via the Web. No live NASA Television coverage is planned. The live streaming video of the countdown and launch will be available on the NASA home page at: http://www.nasa.gov
[...]
Audio coverage of the launch will be available at 321-867-1220, 1240, 1260, and 7135. Streaming video and audio coverage will begin at 12:15 p.m. [EDT] on Oct. 19. It will conclude after spacecraft separation from the Pegasus, approximately 12 minutes after launch.

Launch target
2008, October 19, 1048 PDT, Sunday
2008, October 19, 1348 EDT, Sunday
2008, October 19, 1748 UTC, Sunday
2008, October 20, 0548 MHT (Marshall Islands Time), Kwajalein Atoll, Monday

About 3-1/2 days to launch

01101001
2008-Oct-19, 07:50 AM
Before leaving Vandenberg Air Force Base, From Kennedy Space Center Media Gallery, Category IBEX (http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/search.cfm?cat=185):
http://www-pao.ksc.nasa.gov/kscpao/images/thumbnails/08pd3079-t.jpg (http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/detail.cfm?mediaid=37838)

Launch target
2008, October 19, 1048 PDT, Sunday
2008, October 19, 1348 EDT, Sunday
2008, October 19, 1748 UTC, Sunday
2008, October 20, 0548 MHT (Marshall Islands Time), Kwajalein Atoll, Monday

About 10 hours to launch

01101001
2008-Oct-19, 06:05 PM
Live Webcast (http://webcast.ksc.nasa.gov/code/ibex.wmx) (from NASA IBEX Mission (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ibex/index.html))

Came in late. Right now: Signal lost. Don't know if expected or not.

Prior all good data and nominal indications.

From launch blog (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ibex/launch/launch_blog.html) (times EDT):


1:55 p.m. - IBEX has separated from the third stage and is flying on its own. All systems are operating as expected.

1:53 p.m. - The third stage engine has burned out and will separate momentarily.

1:52 p.m. - The third stage has ignited to send IBEX into its highly elliptical orbit.

1:51 p.m. – The second stage engine has burned out and separated as planned.

1:50 p.m. – The nosecone protecting the IBEX spacecraft has separated from the rocket as planned.

1:49 p.m. – The first stage of the Pegasus has burned out and separated from the rest of the rocket. Second stage is burning as planned.

1:48 p.m. – Drop and Launch! The Pegasus rocket and its IBEX spacecraft are falling free of the "Stargazer" L-1011 aircraft. The first stage has ignited and IBEX is on its way to space!

1:47 p.m. – One minute before launch. The IBEX mission has been given the "go" for launch.

Oh, it's expected. Waiting for TDRS access or Ascension Island (about 22 minutes).

Edit, 10 minutes after the hour: 22 minutes into launch. Thought they might get data by now, but next opportunity is Ascension at 32 minutes after the hour.

Edit, 11 minutes after the hour: receiving sporadic data.

Edit, 17 minutes after: TDRS and IBEX didn't shake hands, aren't talking and people are looking into it. Next data will come from Ascension.

Edit, 21 minutes after: Did get confimation of successful separation of IBEX. Also, carrier airplane is back on the ground. Still don't know why TDRS link didn't work.

Edit, 26 minutes after: TDRS locked on. Over Hawaii couldn't pull down store-and-forward data. Still Ascension Island for lock on and getting data. TDRS data indicates good separation and spacecraft is where it should be. Looks OK.

Edit, 32 minutes after: Webcast signed off. Didn't get to hear status from Ascension before end.

slang
2008-Oct-19, 10:37 PM
Gotta love Pegasus launches!

Some more info on SpaceFlight Now (http://www.spaceflightnow.com/pegasus/ibex/status.html).


"It looks like we got a good Pegasus launch, actually a little bit hotter than we expected, so a little bit more energy. That's good. That means we'll have a little more hydrazine in our tanks," said David McComas, IBEX principal investigator.

"We're getting some limited engineering data (from the satellite). We're going through that. By and large that looks great. There's a couple points that weren't quite what we expected, but those don't seem to be a big issue at this point."

Invader Xan
2008-Oct-20, 12:39 AM
Does anyone know how long it'll be before IBEX has some preliminary results back? (I'm guessing, seeing as it's imaging energetic neutral atoms, it might take a while...)

01101001
2008-Oct-20, 07:25 AM
Does anyone know how long it'll be before IBEX has some preliminary results back? (I'm guessing, seeing as it's imaging energetic neutral atoms, it might take a while...)

Haven't seen a schedule for deliverables to Planetary Data System.

NASA IBEX Mission FAQs (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ibex/FAQs.html)

I'd expect to see some results before the entire heliosphere is mapped.


What is in store for IBEXís future?

The primary mission of IBEX will last for two years. It takes this amount of time for IBEX to map the heliosphere once. If the spacecraft is healthy in mid-2010, and if budget permits, then the mission may be extended. From 2008 to 2010, the Sunís activity level will increase, which may push the heliosphere outward and/or change its shape. Over the next few years, as the Sunís activity level decreases, the heliosphere may change, as well. Because the amount of solar wind particles streaming from the Sun depends, in part, on how active the Sun is, scientists are eager to make several maps of the heliosphere, not just one.

spin0
2009-Aug-25, 10:50 AM
The first science results of IBEX are to be published in Science's IBEX special issue next october. Six coordinated papers promise to be very interesting.


The observations are really extraordinary and they show some very surprising features that aren't in any of the current theories or models, so IBEX is a real mission of discovery, and it is certainly going to require a new paradigm to account for what we are seeing! The results are so good that I have been able to negotiate with Science Magazine - the largest circulation periodical in science - for six coordinated papers, including one with some outside observations.
http://www.ibex.swri.edu/archive/2009.08.shtml

01101001
2009-Oct-14, 01:57 AM
NASA: IBEX: Media Advisory (http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2009/oct/HQ_M09-197_IBEX_briefing.html)


NASA to Reveal Data Showing a New View of Our Galaxy

WASHINGTON -- NASA will hold a NASA Science Update at 2:15 p.m. EDT on Thursday, Oct. 15, to discuss new science data of our galaxy obtained from the agency's Interstellar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, spacecraft. NASA Television and the agency's Web site will provide live coverage of the briefing from the James E. Webb Memorial Auditorium at NASA Headquarters, 300 E St. SW, in Washington.

NASA TV (http://www.nasa.gov/ntv)

Glom
2009-Oct-14, 11:31 AM
It'll never get to the heliopause in two years. I think this mission is fake.

Jens
2009-Oct-15, 01:35 AM
It'll never get to the heliopause in two years. I think this mission is fake.

Just to add to this conspiracy theory, the NASA announcement said they will announce results concerning the features of the "galaxy," not the solar system. Does that mean they are determining things about the whole galaxy from the heliopause of our solar system?

So maybe it's a fake after all. They actually managed to travel around the galaxy in two years.

The Brad
2009-Oct-15, 02:33 AM
It'll never get to the heliopause in two years. I think this mission is fake.

IBEX isn't going to the heliopause, its in a very eccentric Earth-orbit, its sensing particles coming in from various directions to map the termination shock. If you're going to come and post in a thread at least read a little about the mission.

Jens
2009-Oct-15, 03:11 AM
Actually I thought Glom was trying to be funny. But sometimes it's hard to tell. . .

01101001
2009-Oct-16, 02:09 AM
NASA: IBEX: Media Advisory

NASA: IBEX Explores Galactic Frontier, Releases First-Ever All-Sky Map (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ibex/allsky_map.html)

http://www.nasa.gov/images/content/394371main_AllSkyFlat226.jpg (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ibex/allsky_map.html)


The new map reveals the region that separates the nearest reaches of our galaxy, called the local interstellar medium, from our heliosphere -- a protective bubble that shields and protects our solar system from most of the dangerous cosmic radiation traveling through space.

"For the first time, we're sticking our heads out of the sun's atmosphere and beginning to really understand our place in the galaxy," said David J. McComas, IBEX principal investigator and assistant vice president of the Space Science and Engineering Division at Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. "The IBEX results are truly remarkable, with a narrow ribbon of bright details or emissions not resembling any of the current theoretical models of this region."


More there, press release, briefing materials.

AlexInOklahoma
2009-Oct-16, 02:25 AM
"The IBEX results are truly remarkable, with a narrow ribbon of bright details or emissions not resembling any of the current theoretical models of this region."

It seems that the more we learn, the less we know lately... something is out there, or so I have heard, LOL.

Alex

Jens
2009-Oct-16, 03:17 AM
It seems that the more we learn, the less we know lately... something is out there, or so I have heard, LOL.


It's not just lately; it's always been that way. People didn't expect that when you dropped stones of different weights off a tower, that they would fall at the same rate. Nature always surprises us, because we make assumptions and they often turn out to be wrong. People sometimes assume that "we now know nearly everything," but the universe is deeper than that. I suspect that we will always continue to be surprised.

Jens
2009-Oct-16, 06:18 AM
"The IBEX results are truly remarkable, with a narrow ribbon of bright details or emissions not resembling any of the current theoretical models of this region."


That's no ribbon, it's a . . .

So maybe we've discovered the mother ship by accident. :)

iquestor
2009-Oct-16, 01:42 PM
That's no ribbon, it's a . . .

So maybe we've discovered the mother ship by accident. :)

Anybody have any idea what this 'ribbon' could represent?

A.DIM
2009-Oct-16, 01:54 PM
The bright ribbon appears to be shaped by the direction of the interstellar magnetic field outside the heliosphere. Scientists think this suggests that the galactic environment just outside the solar system has far more influence on the structure of the heliosphere than previously believed.

"[The ribbon is] aligned by and dominated by the external magnetic field," McComas said in a briefing Thursday. "That's a huge clue as to what's going on. But still we're missing some really fundamental aspect of the interaction - some fundamental physics is missing from our understanding."

- from the spaceDOTcom article.

mantiss
2009-Oct-16, 02:56 PM
As pointed out by Spaceweather this morning, both Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 and not positionned into the interesting zone where the readings show the "ribbon". I was asking Myself, would New Horizons be pointed in the right direction, is that something that could be added as an ongoing mission if they change the flyby parameters accordingly?

Swift
2009-Oct-16, 04:01 PM
Fraser's UT blog entry (http://www.universetoday.com/2009/10/15/spacecraft-detects-mysterious-ribbon-at-edge-of-solar-system/) about this has a very nice pseudo-3D drawing showing the shape of heliosphere, the ribbon, the interaction with the interstellar medium, and the Voyagers' positions (Link to image (http://www.universetoday.com/2009/10/15/spacecraft-detects-mysterious-ribbon-at-edge-of-solar-system/ibex-flux/)).

NEOWatcher
2009-Oct-16, 05:24 PM
Fraser's UT blog entry (http://www.universetoday.com/2009/10/15/spacecraft-detects-mysterious-ribbon-at-edge-of-solar-system/) about this has a very nice pseudo-3D drawing showing the shape of heliosphere, the ribbon, the interaction with the interstellar medium, and the Voyagers' positions (Link to image (http://www.universetoday.com/2009/10/15/spacecraft-detects-mysterious-ribbon-at-edge-of-solar-system/ibex-flux/)).

Great image, but for some reason my mind keeps wanting to zoom out and see this (http://www.sharecg.com/images/medium/14000.gif).

It is going to be interesting to see what they find, especially with that effect being tangent to the magnetic field.

loglo
2009-Oct-17, 11:16 AM
Don't tell Soran!

slang
2009-Oct-17, 05:39 PM
From the briefing materials, check out this preview animation (http://www.nasa.gov/mpg/392988main_IBEXskymap512x288.mpg) (MPEG, 15 MB) of how the entire sky is mapped into a picture like in 01101001's post, and get hi-res versions here (http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/vis/a000000/a003600/a003635/).


Anybody have any idea what this 'ribbon' could represent?

Vulcan warp trail.

ravens_cry
2009-Oct-17, 06:20 PM
[/URL].
Vulcan warp trail.

I wish, I really, really, wish.:sad:

slang
2010-Jan-16, 07:49 AM
Possible explanation for the ribbon feature:

IBEX "Giant Ribbon" mystery solved (http://www.bautforum.com/space-exploration/99423-ibex-giant-ribbon-mystery-solved.html)