Lynch Rocket Lab
In this lab we are studying the structure and dynamics of the auroral ionosphere. This study has several parts. Sounding rocket missions such as Cascades use multiple-payload probes to look at spatial and temporal variations in auroral precipitation. Data analysis studies of the FAST and Cluster satellite data sets allow statistical investigations of auroral processes. Laboratory plasma studies in a large calibration/plasma vacuum chamber (the "Elephant") allow us to characterize the response of our particle detectors to the thermal auroral plasma, and the response of an ionospheric-like thermal plasma to the presence of our probes. Many students both undergraduate and graduate work in our lab, and the Greencube project is a student-run small-spacecraft design and launch project. Recent efforts are focussed toward the use of commercially available technologies such as Arduino platforms to low-resource spacecraft design, enabling low-cost reproduction of a large number of sensing platforms.
To keep up with laboratory news, click the link below:
Small Rockets Campaign: 2012-2013
Investigation Title: Sounding rocket payload systems for in-situ measurement of ionosphere-thermosphere structure at small spatial scales
Principal investigator and institution: Mark Conde, UAF/GI A sequence of small (large amateur-class) rockets to be launched from Poker Flat for technology development of the deployment of an array of small payloads from a deployer vehicle. Dartmouth will be providing Arduino-based electronics for the deployables to measure their position, attitude, and acceleration; and will investigate the use of 900MHz "DNT" radio systems for local communications.
Investigation Title: Green Cube
The undergraduates in the JPL-sponsored GreenCube project of the Lynch Rocket Lab, are developing a CubeSat-class autonomous sensor payload, which they fly on balloons across New Hampshire and this spring will be floating in an array down the Connecticut (and other) River(s). ``Cubesat'' is a small satellite prototype established by CalPoly and Stanford Universities. Similar satellites have been used by many other universities and student satellite programs because of its relatively easy and inexpensive design. Our 3UCubeSat payloads fly on bursting balloons that reach approximately 90,000 ft. in the air before falling back to earth with a parachute. The total flight takes approximately two hours. We have flown 6 such flights across NH so far. This spring we will be floating an array of 20 Arduino-based GPS-enabled GreenCube payloads down rivers to study river transport of large woody debris, an important parameter in geography studies of fluvial morphology and of recent importance in Vermont given the damage done by Hurricane Irene last year.
Elephant Laboratory Facility
Investigation Title: Elephant
Principal Investigator and Institutions: Kristina Lynch (Dartmouth College)
MICA Campaign - February 2012
Investigation Title: MICA: Magnetosphere-Ionosphere Coupling in the Alfvén Resonator
Principal Investigator Institution: Cornell
Launched February 18 2012 from Poker Flat, Alaska.
RENU Campaign - November 2010
Investigation Title: The Changing Aurora: In Situ and Camera Analysis of Dynamic Electron Precipitation Structures
Principal Investigator and Institutions: Kristina Lynch, Dartmouth College
Co-institutions: Cornell, UNH, UAF/GI
Cascades-2 flew from Poker in 2009.
Photo by Robert Michell
Scifer-2 Launch - January 2008
ROPA Data Analysis
DUST project successfully launched!
Investigation Title: DustOrions, a study of mesospheric meteoric dust layers
Principal Investigator and Instituions: Kristina Lynch (Dartmouth College); Co-Is Lynette Gelinas (Cornell), Richard Collins (UAF/GI)
Co-investigators and Institutions: Lynette Gelinas (Cornell), Richard Collins (UAF/GI)
Was launched March 2005 at Poker Flat. The DustDetector was flown again in February 2008 on the HotPay2 flight from Andoya, Norway, and in July 2008 on the ECOMA Project, also from Andoya.
Lynch Rocket Lab