NASA’s TIMED mission has completed 20 years by surveying the dynamics of the upper atmosphere of Earth. TIMED has been launched in 2001, and has observed Thermosphere, Ionosphere and Mesosphere’s chemistry and dynamics. As this mission has completed 20 years, scientists are reflecting on what they have learned form this mission in this past 20 years.
The findings of TIMED have influenced various missions of NASA in the field of heliophysics and Sun-Earth system. Nicola Fox, the director of the Heliophysics Division at NASA, has said that TIMED had played an important role in heliophysics. The upper atmosphere is also important to understand Sun-Earth system and the data provided by TIMED played an important role in understanding this dynamic.
Specialists also commented about how TIMED data will help NASA’s heliophysics missions in future. The data has helped to shape the previous missions that NASA has taken up. Missions such as ICON and GOLD are hugely based on the data collected by TIMED.
TIMED’s collection of data have given scientists unprecedented perspective about the upper atmosphere. The long period of this mission has also allowed scientists to track the upper atmosphere’s response to quick-changing conditions as the cooling of the upper atmosphere due to climate change.
The deputy director of the Heliophysics Division at NASA, Peg Luce, have congratulated all the scientists who have worked in this mission. TIMED data has changed our understanding of upper atmosphere its response to Sun and conditions on Earth.
TIMED has also improved our understanding of many complex physical processes in Earth’s upper atmosphere. It has also developed our understanding how changes in the upper atmosphere are directly influenced by what is happening in the lower atmosphere.