NASA’s Mission: Dr. Aroh Barjatya Directs Project with 3 Rockets Launched into the Ionosphere

On April 8th, following two consecutive days of solar eclipses, a total solar eclipse was witnessed in the United States. During such eclipses, the ionosphere, located 90 to 500 kilometers above the Earth’s surface, experiences distinct changes. 

To delve into these alterations, NASA embarked on a research project deploying three rockets into the ionosphere. Spearheading this endeavor was Dr. Aroh Barjatya, a professor of Engineering Physics at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Florida, originally from Jaipur but residing in Vadodara for years. Dr. Barjatya, with his team, meticulously documented various aspects of the mission, including its preparations. 

This mission held paramount importance for humanity as solar eclipses can disrupt radio signals in the ionosphere, affecting global communication systems including mobile phones, television broadcasts, and power grids. Understanding the extent of these disruptions is the primary objective of this research effort. 

The findings of this mission will be shared with the world in the near future, shedding light on the impacts of solar phenomena on our planet’s atmosphere and technological infrastructure.

Role of NASA’s Rocket Systems in Dr. Aroh Barjatya’s Research

Dr. Aroh Barjatya, the founding director of the Space-Atmospheric Instrumentation Lab at Embry-Riddle University, plays a pivotal role in NASA’s research endeavors. In conjunction with NASA, the design of the rocket systems used in the experiments is meticulously crafted. 

These rockets, including the first launched 45 minutes before the solar eclipse, the second during the eclipse, and the third 45 minutes after the eclipse, are integral to the research conducted.

NASA’s Rocket Reaches Maximum Altitude of 420 km

NASA’s rocket reached a maximum altitude of 420 kilometers during the experiment. The rockets deployed by NASA are equipped to measure charged and neutral particles as well as electromagnetic (electric and magnetic field) fields in the ionosphere. 

For this purpose, the rockets carry instruments that include two-liter soda bottles ejected from the rocket, which measure these variations.

Niyati Rao

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