Transcripts of SDO 1st Light Press Conf-H

[00:00:06.33] Dwayne: Good afternoon ladies and gentleman, boys and girls, my name is Dwayne Brown with
[00:00:12.36] NASA's Office of Communications in Washington D.C. We are live
[00:00:18.38] at the Newseum here in D.C. to debut to the world the first images
[00:00:24.40] from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, the most
[00:00:30.41] advanced spacecraft ever built to study the Sun. In fact SDO
[00:00:36.44] will change text books and help in some way or another everyone here
[00:00:42.48] in this room today, folks watching this program live via NASA television,
[00:00:48.51] around the world, and on our website at
[00:00:54.55] and in fact all of life on Earth SDO will
[00:01:00.56] affect. Ladies and gentlemen boys and girls you will see the Sun as never seen
[00:01:06.58] before today. We have a lot to cover, our panelists will give brief presentations and then we will open it up
[00:01:14.39] for questions from around the country. Let me
[00:01:18.36] introduce you to these incredible scientists. First up
[00:01:24.43] Dean Pesnell SDO Project Scientist from NASA's Goddard Space Flight
[00:01:30.44] Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. Alan Title Principal
[00:01:36.47] Investigator Atmospheric Imaging Assembly, Lockheed Martin
[00:01:42.51] Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory in Palo Alto, California. Next will be Phillip
[00:01:48.81] Scherrer Principal Investigator Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager
[00:01:54.88] Stanford University in Palo Alto. Next up would be Tom Woods
[00:02:00.89] Principal Investigator Extreme Ultraviolet Variability Experiment from the Laboratory
[00:02:06.92] for Atmospheric and Space Physics forn the University of Colorado in Boulder.
[00:02:12.95] And Madhulika Guhathakurta-we like to call her Lika-the SDO Program Scientist
[00:02:22.34] at NASA Headquarters in Washington. But before we get to them we're gunna set the stage.
[00:02:29.13] The director of NASA's office that studies the Sun,
[00:02:35.19] interaction with Earth, and the solar system the area of science called Heliophysics
[00:02:41.20] will set the stage; the Director Richard Fisher.
[00:02:53.27] Richard: We are all living in the outer atmosphere
[00:02:59.34] of a star and that's our Sun. And its variability influences the Earth and the planets
[00:03:05.35] and the space in the solar system itself. Now today our goal is to show
[00:03:11.36] you the first images, the first data from the Solar Dynamics observatory which people will refer to
[00:03:17.40] as SDO. This was launched relatively reasonably and last
[00:03:23.45] February and its taken several weeks to commission the observatory this is like getting that
[00:03:29.52] power systems right, getting the temperatures right, getting the pointing fixed so that it's
[00:03:35.53] working correctly. Its taken several weeks to do and it has worked very well.
[00:03:41.55] The spacecraft is one of the most flawlessly operating ones I've ever seen.
[00:03:47.57] The first images are now in hand, and these are truly spectacular, and they show the details
[00:03:53.63] of our Sun that have not been available to us before in a comprehensive and a-multi dimentional manner.
[00:03:59.69] The impact of this observatory on the physics of stars,
[00:04:05.70] solar physics, solar terrestrial research, and in the field of space weather would be
[00:04:11.72] truly revolutionary and I mean that revolutionary in the sense that the way the Hubble Space
[00:04:17.76] Telescope was in fact a tool for revolutionizing astrophysics over the last two decades.
[00:04:23.82] Without going into it any further let me introduce Dean Pesnell who will take the lead.
[00:04:29.89] Dean: Alright. Thanks Dick, I'm Dean Pesnell and I'm sure happy to be here today.
[00:04:35.90] SDO is doing great and are instruments are doing better but let's start
[00:04:41.92] with the launch sequence. SDO was launched into a partly cloudy sky on February
[00:04:47.98] 11, 2010. It took us about twelve more burns to get into our
[00:04:54.04] correct orbit and then we began turning on all the systems getting the instruments running.
[00:05:00.12] And the biggest thing is first we need power, so we get our solar rays second we need
[00:05:06.14] to be able to talk to the spacecraft so we get our radio antennas and then we need the instruments to
[00:05:12.17] open the doors so they can start sending back data. We are now sending our high speed data
[00:05:18.22] about four sixteen mega-pixel images per every three seconds to the ground
[00:05:24.28] SDO is the first mission in the Living with the Star Program. It is designed to study the Sun and how the Sun affects us here on the Earth. Most of these effects come from the magnetic
[00:05:35.88] field of the Sun, and we're going to see today that that magnetic field is never the same twice; it's
[00:05:41.90] always changing. Today we will show some of the earliest data from SDO. We will see new
[00:05:47.94] things with each instrument. The first is the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager.
[00:05:53.99] HMI will measure the waves rippling across the surface of the Sun
[00:06:00.06] and the strength and direction of the magnetic field at the surface of the Sun. Using those
[00:06:06.07] waves we can actually look inside the Sun and in fact we can look all the way through the Sun
[00:06:12.08] and see what's happening on the other side. Its a great thing that we've been using for a while and HMI will
[00:06:18.12] allows us to do better. The next instrument is the Extreme Ultraviolet Variability
[00:06:24.17] Experiment or EVE that's built by the University of Colorado and that measures
[00:06:30.26] the heartbeat of space weather, the extreme ultraviolet emissions of the Sun. This data will
[00:06:36.28] tell us what the Sun is doing to the upper parts of our atmosphere as it affects our radio
[00:06:42.30] communications and causes satellite drag to bring satellites down. Our first picture from EVE
[00:06:48.33] doesn't look anything like it should. It's a beatiful image of a, CCD image of a spectra
[00:06:54.39] where things that are red or bright that things that are blue aren't bright, but the cool thing about EVE
[00:07:00.46] is that they found a little spot on the CCD and in the lower left hand right hand corner you can see
[00:07:06.49] small image of the Sun and that's a very short wavelength X-rays.
[00:07:12.51] Our third instrument is the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly, that was built at the
[00:07:18.55] Lockheed Martin Solar Astrophysical Laboratory and will bring us extraordinary image of the Sun's
[00:07:24.62] corona and chromosphere. AIA will record images at a full disk EUV Sun at a pace
[00:07:30.63] and with more channels than we have ever before achieved. This will allow us to zoom in
[00:07:36.65] on small regions and see far more detail about time and space.
[00:07:42.68] Here we see an image from AIA at about eighty-thousand kelvin. We have two more
[00:07:48.73] and they are successively hotter parts of the Sun up to about two billion kelvin.
[00:07:54.82] We have so many channels on AIA that we're acutally having problems deciding what false colors to
[00:08:00.83] use to represent these images, so I hope you understand our problem. The first
[00:08:06.85] movie I saw from AIA was taken the very day that they made it the detectors cold
[00:08:12.88] and it could take a good picture, we're gonna show that next. It's a little part of the Sun and we see what's called
[00:08:18.96] a prominence eruption coming off of the surface. Now it's not a very long movie we're gonna
[00:08:25.07] loop it around a couple of time so you can see it but I called in another solar physicist to look at this movie
[00:08:31.08] and he laughed and said well "that just proves another theorist's theory." So of course I went
[00:08:37.12] to the other theorists and I said, "well what do you think about that" and he said, "well it may just prove that theory
[00:08:43.17] but I have another theory that also explains this." So we're already learning new things for the images
[00:08:49.21] that we're seeing from our instruments. But this is only the first view. And now I'm going to let
[00:08:55.26] Alan Title from the AIA instrument to talk about even more of the images that they've been able
[00:09:01.27] to take since they started. Alan. Alan: Thanks Dean, thank you for showing my movie.
[00:09:07.30] I wonder if we could have the first slide please
[00:09:13.34] okay. This is not a cartoon, this is the real instrument you can see the four AIA
[00:09:19.37] telescopes and behind it the SDO spacecraft. This is an effort
[00:09:25.41] of a number of years by many hundreds of people and the fact that this all worked
[00:09:31.42] from the first moment that it was operated is just an astounding tribute to the people
[00:09:37.45] of our team and the people of NASA, and the people who watched this rocket so if you have
[00:09:43.49] the next slide, next movie please.
[00:09:49.52] This is a composite picture and here's the
[00:09:55.61] images that Dean has shown that now with a billion degree Sun overlaid in green
[00:10:01.63] on that eighty thousand degree Sun. What I'd like to show you next is an event called
[00:10:07.65] the coronal mass ejection. There's a large wave that travels across the Sun. It originates
[00:10:13.71] from a little magnetic region and if you watch the brightening region this is what the
[00:10:19.79] Sun looks like at a sequence of temperatures, so this is a million degree Sun.
[00:10:25.80] This is a million six and you can see the wave travel across the Sun
[00:10:31.81] and the Sun darkened behind it. And this image, these images
[00:10:37.84] don't really do justice to the resolution of the telescopes
[00:10:43.91] and the detectors. So we're going to zoom in and look at these regions
[00:10:49.99] with a little more detail. So if we could zoom in again here's the magnetic field that's
[00:10:56.01] responsible for all of this and here's the Sun at eighty thousand degrees and you can
[00:11:02.03] barely see in this image the siganture of the wave but you can see
[00:11:08.09] the region of the upper atmosphere of the Sun heating locally in this very small flare.
[00:11:20.26] Now here's the Sun at a million degrees at this frame, these frames are taken once every twenty
[00:11:26.28] seconds. So you see this wave front moving out slowly, actually its moving out at about a half
[00:11:32.30] a million miles an hour and you can see very clearly the dimming, this dimming is
[00:11:38.34] is caused because the wave is lifting off the material of the chroma, of the corona.
[00:11:44.38] Here it is at one point six million degrees. The wave comes across
[00:11:50.43] and if you look to the lower right you'll see this bright
[00:11:56.45] region dim and the region around the flare itself dimming much more strongly.
[00:12:02.47] And here's a ten million degree
[00:12:08.52] picture and you can see how much brighter the flare itself is then the local surround.
[00:12:14.60] Okay, so why do we take all these different pictures at different temperatures? We want to see
[00:12:20.65] what the physical phenomena are that are associated with the flare and this
[00:12:26.67] ejection of material and it's not a trivial ejection of material. What we've ejected here
[00:12:32.70] is amount of mass about the same as contained in the whole Mississippi River
[00:12:38.73] and we've ejected it at speed of about a million miles an hour
[00:12:44.77] and we've accelerated it to a million miles an hour in about thirty seconds
[00:12:50.78] CME actually is actually a halo CME which impacts the Earth. So now what what we're going to do is
[00:12:56.80] start to put these images together in color and so the images will go from blue to red from
[00:13:02.84] to cool to hot, where in the first images we're looking at 80,000 to 1,000,000
[00:13:08.89] And this is another filament ejection that was associated
[00:13:14.95] with the wave. And now here's the Sun captured in color
[00:13:20.96] from a million to two million degrees. And as the wave propagates across the Sun you can see
[00:13:26.98] the colors change and that shows how the gasses are heating. Now here's the blow up
[00:13:33.00] of the region and as the wavefront goes out the colors of the region
[00:13:39.04] change and that tells us how rapidly the gas is heating.
[00:13:51.11] And now here's a sequence from two million to six point three
[00:13:57.13] million. And you can see the red and white region these are regions that are very hot
[00:14:03.17] And as the flare goes off, if you watch the green glow in front this one
[00:14:09.23] is a five million degree gas and the red wave as this flare goes off
[00:14:15.31] we're driving that gas to six to ten million degrees.
[00:14:21.33] And from this we can began for the first time to decode how this energy
[00:14:27.34] is released into the the outer atmosphere and because we all live in the outer atmosphere how it
[00:14:33.38] impacts us. Phil why don't you tell us how the magnetic field runs on this? Phil: Right. So
[00:14:38.43] all of the images that you've seen from AIA and the one
[00:14:44.48] the data you'll see from EVE shortly come to the extreme ultraviolet they're invisible, they come from
[00:14:50.54] high in the corona and low in the corona but in the corona above the surface. All of the many
[00:14:56.55] fields of structure what happening up there have to come through the surface. SO HMI is looking at
[00:15:02.57] magentic fields at the surface at the visisble surface that also we can see white light and we can see doppler gaps
[00:15:08.60] we can see motion at the surface. So we can look at the first
[00:15:14.66] movie and see the Sun at the time of the flare that Alan
[00:15:20.73] was looking at it like CME you don't see anything at that same place as the little tiny sunspot
[00:15:26.21] is disappearing during the event that Alan was talking about
[00:15:30.27] the nice thing about SDO is that we have all of the Sun. So we'll be able to
[00:15:34.33] say was that an interesting region to look at or not? We can tell
[00:15:38.35] from AIA that it was but you can go back and look at see what was
[00:15:42.38] was going on in each of the wavelengths. Now
[00:15:46.39] a week before that back to end of March
[00:15:50.46] this is what the Sun looked like then, there was a sunspot there and we're going to zoom
[00:15:54.51] in on that, we can zoom in anywhere we want it you can see the wiggles there
[00:15:58.57] our solar granulations and solar oscillations
[00:16:02.60] sort of little California size bubbles and the sunspot is sort of Earth size
[00:16:06.62] But the white light there
[00:16:10.68] is interesting but it doesn't really show us how it connects
[00:16:14.76] up in the upper atmophere so we can also measure a magnetic field
[00:16:18.79] and the next image shows a close up of that same region
[00:16:22.82] this is magentic field and you can see the little wiggles going out from the sunspot
[00:16:26.84] waves going out the magentic loops there
[00:16:30.89] you can also see, it a little hard in the movies, but to watch it
[00:16:34.94] you can see the network that clustering of fields is slowly changing
[00:16:38.98] as its evolving, as the flows are moving it around
[00:16:43.01] But as interesting as the magentic field is in fact
[00:16:47.02] take those magnetic field data and combine them with AIA data and to try
[00:16:51.09] model what
[00:16:55.46] in addition to the line-of-sight field that we were looking at HMI will make
[00:16:59.50] measure the vector field the horizontal component, that was just the component
[00:17:03.54] in the direction of the observer. But we'll also see the field as perpendicular to that
[00:17:07.54] that data we won't show today,
[00:17:11.55] but probably next week. But
[00:17:15.60] in addition to the magnetic field, one of the key things that we could do
[00:17:19.65] with HMI is to look at the motion of the surface. The inside of the
[00:17:23.69] Sun is filled up with sound waves they're bouncing every which way when they come
[00:17:27.72] up to the surface they reflect back in, and when they reflect the surface
[00:17:31.74] wiggles and we can measure that motion, so we can make a map of motions
[00:17:35.81] of the whole surface of the Sun. The next movie piece
[00:17:39.86] shows the same region we were looking at but it's showing a map of motion
[00:17:43.90] where light color is coming up and dark color is going down
[00:17:47.94] you can see that it's just filled with these waves bouncing around, so almost all of
[00:17:51.96] that wiggling you see, it looks like raindrops in a pond,
[00:17:56.06] is waves from inside the Sun bouncing from the surface and reflecting back in.
[00:18:00.14] So what we can do is measure those and do
[00:18:04.18] computations with them to deduce flows in the interior
[00:18:08.21] so we can make maps of motions beneath the surface down from
[00:18:12.23] five-hundred miles all the way down to the center of the Sun.
[00:18:16.31] So it's a great opportunity and we're really looking forward
[00:18:20.36] to having this kind of data that will allows to really study what's happening
[00:18:24.40] inside the sun as well as what's happening outside. Now for the
[00:18:28.43] Sun as a star view we'lll go to Tom Woods.
[00:18:32.45] Tom: Thank you Phil. I'm Tom Woods with the University of Colorado in Boulder
[00:18:36.46] and I'm very excited to be here to tell you about the third SDO instrument we call it the Extreme
[00:18:40.51] Ultraviolet Variability Experiment or EVE. EVE is
[00:18:44.55] different than these imagers. Instead of measuring images of the Sun
[00:18:48.57] we focus more on the spectrum of the Sun, that is the different
[00:18:52.60] wavelengths in the extreme ultraviolet, and I won't try to explain
[00:18:56.61] all the details of the spectrum, but I would like to emphasize that we're measuring
[00:19:00.66] all the wavelengths of the spectrum including many of those that AIA
[00:19:04.70] measure with their imagers. So if we go to the
[00:19:08.72] first movie. This is a movie of
[00:19:12.74] the EVE spectrum--every peak, every emission line has a story
[00:19:16.75] to tell and thanks to the new capability of EVE
[00:19:20.83] we're ready to see hudreds of stories unfold during each solar storm.
[00:19:24.89] EVE measures the spectrum with every ten seconds
[00:19:28.94] about the same amount of time you saw the spectrum scroll across the screen
[00:19:32.96] In addition, we have detectors that can measure the Sun
[00:19:36.98] with a cadence of four samples per second. So
[00:19:41.02] why so often? Why is the Solar EUV spectrum important?
[00:19:45.06] So for the next graphics
[00:19:49.10] we call this space weather. The Sun is constantly changing
[00:19:53.12] and solar events on the Sun can cause disturbance
[00:19:57.14] to Earth that we call space weather; one type of solar event
[00:20:01.17] is called a flare, and a flare when it goes off on the Sun
[00:20:05.21] can increase the solar EUV radiation by a a factor of two
[00:20:09.24] to hundred in just a modern of a minute
[00:20:13.25] when a flare goes off it hits Earth's atmosphere with this full blast of energy
[00:20:17.27] and these EUV photons are so energetic they break apart the molecules and atoms
[00:20:21.32] in the atmosphere creating what we call the ionosphere,
[00:20:25.38] this is the plasma or charged particles in our atmosphere about sixty
[00:20:29.41] kilometers up. And when the ionosphere is disturbed it can
[00:20:33.44] disrupt our techonology such as communication, GPS navigation systems
[00:20:37.47] and one example was that there was a loss of radio communication
[00:20:41.52] for the Katrina relief workers a few days after
[00:20:45.57] the hurricane hit New Orleans due to solar storm
[00:20:49.61] These new EVE measurements and SDO measurements
[00:20:53.63] will be used by NASA, NOAA, and the Air Force to more precisely
[00:20:57.65] predict each solar flare and how it will change our
[00:21:01.66] ionosphere. And with those modeling efforts to understand the ionosphere
[00:21:05.71] this will be able to make better predictions of how it will disrupt communication and navigations.
[00:21:09.74] The more we know about these flares the better
[00:21:13.77] we will be able to be proactive instead of reactive to
[00:21:17.79] the impact of these solar storms on our technology. Prior to
[00:21:21.80] SDO launch our flare monitoring was, has been and will continue to be
[00:21:25.84] with the NOAA GOES satellite using their solar X-ray measurements
[00:21:29.88] but this is just two wavelengths. As you see in this figure the GOES
[00:21:33.90] X-ray monitors a C4 type flare on
[00:21:37.92] March 27. This is just hours after
[00:21:41.93] the EVE instrument open its doors and obtained its first light
[00:21:45.99] and I'm going to show you a movie of this flare that EVE
[00:21:50.02] has observed and you can tell it's much more significant that the GOES
[00:21:54.07] because it's observing all EUV wavelengths
[00:21:58.09] not just two wavelengths that GOES measures.
[00:22:02.12] I'll illustrate some of the complexity solar flare event, but let me explain
[00:22:06.17] the three panels you'll see in the movie. So for the next graphics
[00:22:10.22] please. The solar image
[00:22:14.25] is an X-ray image from EVE is on the left panel
[00:22:18.27] the X-ray image only shows the active regions in the Sun- it is
[00:22:22.28] somewhat challenging to visualize the solar disc but you can see the active region
[00:22:26.34] when a flare goes off is dim, active regions become very bright or
[00:22:30.39] flare up. The right top panel is part of the EUV
[00:22:34.43] spectrum as you watch the movie you will notice that many of the hot
[00:22:38.46] iron line will go up suddenly and then decay down slowly
[00:22:42.48] and then finally the bottom right panel shows the time series of
[00:22:46.53] three of the missions. So if you start the movie please.
[00:22:50.58] An interesting aspect of watching is that each
[00:22:54.62] emission has its own story to tell, some wavelengths rise faster
[00:22:58.66] than others, they peak at different times, and they decay back down
[00:23:02.69] at differnt rates. This movie only highlights three emission
[00:23:06.70] lines in the time series plot but I'll remind you that EVE
[00:23:10.74] is measureing all the EUV wavengths in the spectrum,
[00:23:14.78] more than a hundred different emissions. Indeed SDO
[00:23:18.80] is monitoring the the heartbeat of the Sun. Before I turn over to
[00:23:22.81] Lika for closing remarks I also like to thank the EVE team for making this
[00:23:26.83] very successful instrument and providing many of the graphics for the EVE
[00:23:30.87] first light that you've seen, and also thank NASA for this very exciting
[00:23:34.92] mission. Lika: Thank you Tom and
[00:23:38.94] good afternoon . From everything that you have seen
[00:23:42.96] today, right now, it might seem to you SDO's
[00:23:46.98] research is purely local. Finding how the nearest
[00:23:51.02] star works and how it affects our life here on Earth
[00:23:55.06] But that is just the tip of the iceberg. The universe
[00:23:59.09] is filled with electrically conducting material--
[00:24:03.12] gas, ionizing gas-- that we call plasma.
[00:24:07.13] In some sense the entire universe is filled with this magnetized
[00:24:11.19] plasma exceptions are planetary
[00:24:15.23] atmosphere we reside in one or very thick
[00:24:19.26] interstellar gas.
[00:24:23.29] We presume that more stars are also magnetically active
[00:24:27.30] like the Sun, but the Sun is the only star that we can
[00:24:31.35] directly access and study. If you can learn how magnetized
[00:24:35.38] plasma processes work on the Sun as we are attempting to
[00:24:39.42] with SDO, we'll know how they work in the distant corners
[00:24:43.46] of the univers as well. So SDO only
[00:24:47.48] seems local, in fact I think it is going to provide us with a
[00:24:51.56] broadest biggest signs. If I could have the first movie please
[00:24:55.60] What this moving is showing is how many different ways
[00:24:59.66] SDO touches Earth. It evokes kind of a sense of waves
[00:25:03.71] under and when we see these fantastic images even
[00:25:07.72] hardcore solar physicists like myself and our panel members
[00:25:11.82] here are struck with awe literally. It stokes our
[00:25:15.91] curiosity, you see these prominences erupting, the loops changing
[00:25:19.97] color, showing how heat is being transferred; you just want to
[00:25:24.02] know, How these are created? How are they going to affect us?
[00:25:28.04] How are we going to be able to predict them? From these images we can
[00:25:32.05] actually see new signs unfolding right in front of our eyes
[00:25:36.12] and I think Dean mentioned something about that, theories being discarded.
[00:25:40.18] For the first time since the launch of SkyLab which is almost
[00:25:44.20] 4 decades ago, I think observations are
[00:25:48.22] ahead of therotical models.
[00:25:52.23] I think Dick already mentioned that we live in the outer
[00:25:56.29] atmosphere of this restless variable magentic
[00:26:00.33] star and that's really an important point. You know while the Sun
[00:26:04.36] light enables and sustains life here it also
[00:26:08.38] produces very harmful particles and radiaton
[00:26:12.40] that can can actually cause harmful effects on life and
[00:26:16.45] even change/alter its evolution.
[00:26:20.49] If I can have the next movie please. What this movie's going to show you
[00:26:24.53] what happens when we have our coronal mass ejection
[00:26:28.58] which is really a cloud of plasma, huge amounts of
[00:26:32.60] material that is big enough to swallow the Earth probably
[00:26:36.70] hitting at a speed millions of miles an hour or greater.
[00:26:40.77] It impinges on Earth magetosphere;
[00:26:44.82] lucky for us we have a magnetic shield, most of these harmful
[00:26:48.85] radiations are deflected by this magetosphere. Every
[00:26:52.88] once in a while the field line of the Sun and the field line of the Earth
[00:26:56.88] magnetosphere are aligned just right and that's when some of these
[00:27:00.94] particles actually penetrates our atmophere thorugh the North and South
[00:27:04.98] poles causing beautiful arorae that we see
[00:27:09.01] as well as harmful effects by a true magentic storms and many other
[00:27:13.04] activites that go on. So in some sense
[00:27:17.05] life has flourished on this planet under the
[00:27:21.10] protective shield of this magnetosphere.
[00:27:25.14] The origins and fate of life are really intimately connected
[00:27:29.16] to the way Earth responds to solar variability.
[00:27:33.19] Recognizing this fact, this important fact, in
[00:27:37.20] 2001, NASA implemented a program called LIving with a Star
[00:27:41.25] whose goal it is to study this magnetic variability
[00:27:45.30] and its impact on life and society,
[00:27:49.34] and solar dynamics observatory is the very first mission of this
[00:27:53.35] program. I wan to show another still chart called the
[00:27:57.37] impacts chart just to give you a little bit more. This
[00:28:01.42] provides the reason for why do we study the Sun
[00:28:06.95] in such exquisite detail. The top pannel shows, you know, how the Sun influences
[00:28:10.98] Earth's magnetosphere, ionosphere, mesosphere you know
[00:28:15.01] atmospheres of other planets, to the very edge
[00:28:19.04] of the intertesllar medium as well as the basic plasma processeses
[00:28:23.05] in the universe as I said in the begining. The lower half of the chart
[00:28:27.06] actually shows the impacts here on Earth. I think
[00:28:31.10] in human society with time as it has become technologically
[00:28:35.12] advanced, has become really vulnerable to solar variability.
[00:28:39.13] Solar variability affects astronauts working in space, space stations,
[00:28:43.15] satellites in space, communication, navigation,
[00:28:47.17] you know just any number of events
[00:28:51.22] including terrestrial weather. So the question is
[00:28:55.26] we really need to underestand solar variabilities it's crucial to our
[00:28:59.29] modern way of life. In my way of thinking it is
[00:29:03.32] a necessity, not a choice, for a space
[00:29:07.33] faring nation like ours. What I'd like to show at this
[00:29:11.38] point is some of the ways we are attempting to
[00:29:15.43] share these fantastic observations.
[00:29:19.47] And what you have here is an Apple
[00:29:23.51] application being developed for iPad and this is just an example
[00:29:27.53] where you know you would be able to actually see some of these
[00:29:31.60] movies, maybe, maybe not but
[00:29:35.65] this is being developed and will be available soon for some of you at
[00:29:39.69] least to enjoy some of these spectacular movies. And in finally I want to end
[00:29:43.73] with one thought I think in some ways SDO is
[00:29:47.75] being compared as the Hubble of heliophysics
[00:29:51.81] it's thought that it's going to revolutionize physics
[00:29:55.88] helipophysics much as hubble space telecope has revolutionized
[00:29:59.92] astrophysics and cosmology, which is true.
[00:30:03.96] There is, however, a very keen difference: while Hubble
[00:30:07.98] is designed to observe almost everything in the cosmos,
[00:30:12.04] SDO is designed to study in
[00:30:16.08] great detail only one and one one thing and that
[00:30:20.12] is our very own star. It is tailor-made for the
[00:30:24.16] study of Sun stuff. Stay tuned
[00:30:28.17] for some really break-through signs that have real relevance
[00:30:32.18] to life here on Earth wil be coming through very soon.
[00:30:36.22] Thank you and back to you Dwayne. Dwayne: Thank you ladies and gentlemen before we open it up
[00:30:40.26] for questions. This is just the beginning
[00:30:44.29] but yes you guys wanna give an applause, please give a round of applause for these folks up here
[00:30:48.32] and all of the teams that are involved in this incredible spacecraft
[00:30:52.33] Applause.
[00:30:56.41] Applause.
[00:31:00.46] Okay, now you really get the feel of the spacecraft
[00:31:04.49] when it comes to the Q&A and I'm try to write these questions down;
[00:31:08.51] they're coming in my earpiece here. I'm going to
[00:31:12.52] ask Dean to start of with this, this is coming from your
[00:31:16.57] and probably Lika may want to join in also but how
[00:31:20.61] is SDO different from other solar observing spacecraft?
[00:31:24.64] Dean: Well SDO is like
[00:31:28.66] the culmination of a whole generation of
[00:31:32.67] putting observatories in space to study the Sun.
[00:31:36.73] We've learned that we have to take things more rapidly, we have to be able to look at the whole
[00:31:40.77] Sun as well as zoom in to look at little parts of the Sun.
[00:31:44.81] We need to look at the waves rippling across the whole surface of the Sun
[00:31:48.84] to do the helioseismology that we want to do
[00:31:52.85] to understand a magnetic field. One thing that we didn't show today was that we're
[00:31:56.91] going to be able to not just make black-and-white-o'grams of the magentic field
[00:32:00.97] but also show the strength and direction of the magentic field so
[00:32:05.00] that's something we've never done before. NASA's going to do it.
[00:32:09.04] And we have EVE as well; these are
[00:32:13.05] result of people putting things in space, learning what had to be done
[00:32:17.12] and figuring out a better way to do it. Lika: I'll add
[00:32:21.17] in I think Dean said most of it, I think it is the most comprehensive
[00:32:25.21] view of the Sun. it is not that we are seeing the Sun
[00:32:29.23] in the highest resultion spatial, we've seen it with TRACE,
[00:32:33.26] but those were piecemeal observation, bits and pieces, when you see the whole Sun as you have
[00:32:39.82] seen tooday it is showing connections
[00:32:43.86] that we have never seen before and that is absolutely important
[00:32:47.87] we are trying to understand the Sun as a star, its
[00:32:51.94] connection, and ultimately its connection
[00:32:56.01] our own planet Earth. And I think SDO is going to
[00:33:00.05] contribute significantly to that end like no other mission has done.
[00:33:04.56] Dwayne: Okay now I want you guys to really project on this one because
[00:33:08.58] I think this is the essence and I think Lika you already touched on this but this
[00:33:12.60] next question comes from the Pacific Coast. "Why should the public care
[00:33:16.66] about NASA wanting to better
[00:33:20.71] understand our Sun?" Lika: I'll take a crack at
[00:33:24.75] it, I think I've kind of said it. I mean if you think about it
[00:33:28.78] the Sun controls our climate, it's spewing out
[00:33:32.79] solar wind at million miles an hour. It is
[00:33:36.85] the very source of space weather, I mean it is
[00:33:40.92] a thousand times bigger than any other object in the
[00:33:44.95] sky. My question is if we don't study the Sun
[00:33:48.97] what should we study? Tom: For a couple
[00:33:52.99] examples of technology that affects probably most people
[00:33:57.05] in the United States one is GPS navigation systems people use them.
[00:34:01.11] A very large solar storm, they've knocked out GPS navigation
[00:34:05.14] as far south as Florida. Another example is
[00:34:09.17] flying between countries sometimes they have to reroute planes
[00:34:13.18] flying from the United States to other countries and they have to reroute
[00:34:17.24] them and spend millions of dollars to reroute and spend more
[00:34:21.30] airline gas or cancel flights because of solar storms. So there's a very
[00:34:25.34] practical examples of technology that we probably all experience.
[00:34:29.38] Phil: Another example is power systems, power grids.
[00:34:33.39] A large solar storm will easily take out the power distribution
[00:34:37.40] in say, Northern Sweden; one of those happened a few years ago
[00:34:41.46] one of the goals for SDO was to learn how to do forecasting for these
[00:34:45.49] large storms. If we're successful it will have big impact on the people whose
[00:34:49.53] lights otherwise would have gone out. Alan: Okay,
[00:34:53.56] on a more basic note virtually all
[00:34:57.57] the mass in the universe is plasma, that is to say
[00:35:01.62] it's ionized and it's conducting and it's dominated by
[00:35:05.66] magentic fields. In order to understand
[00:35:09.70] our universe we really have to understand how turbulant
[00:35:13.72] plasmas behave and the only place we can really
[00:35:17.73] study it at any detail is the Sun. And if you want
[00:35:21.77] to take this closer to the Earth the future of energy
[00:35:25.82] in the world is fusion reactors and people
[00:35:29.86] build fusion reactors look to the Sun as
[00:35:33.87] the test of their models and theories, so we look to the Sun
[00:35:37.88] to understand how we burn hydrogen to helium cleanly,
[00:35:41.92] to produce energy. Dean: Well I have
[00:35:45.96] a reason too. We work at NASA, or I work at NASA.
[00:35:50.01] NASA flies satellites, that's our job. When the Sun is more active
[00:35:54.02] satellites come out of orbit more quickly and one of our goals
[00:35:58.03] is to be able to understand that aspect of satellites.
[00:36:02.08] We have astronauts in space, they can be harmed by radiation that is changed
[00:36:06.12] by solar activity, we want understand and be able to predict that.
[00:36:10.16] So we have very practical applications for the work that we do with SDO.
[00:36:14.17] Dwayne: Okay, we have time for one more question and then we're gunna go down the line one more
[00:36:18.18] time and this is something that I always enjoy hearing from
[00:36:22.24] scientists. Now that you have the most advanced spacecraft
[00:36:26.29] in orbit, how did you feel personally
[00:36:30.31] after launch and now seeing that your experiments
[00:36:34.33] are indeed ready to bring this incredible data back, personally
[00:36:38.36] what's going through your head? Who wants to start out, Alan? Alan: Okay,
[00:36:42.41] that's easy for me if you just look up at the wall
[00:36:46.45] and if that was the first picture you ever took
[00:36:50.48] with your camera you probably, every single
[00:36:54.50] one of you would have a little different feeling, but to me
[00:36:58.52] it's just beautiful and thank God it all
[00:37:02.57] worked. (laugh)
[00:37:06.62] Phil: I was, when we were first opening the door and saw the first
[00:37:10.67] images I was also thinking of the the two hundred people who worked on it
[00:37:14.71] during the last eight years and all of the work has really paid off, and
[00:37:18.74] that was just on the HMI experiment, there's equal amounts on the other
[00:37:22.75] experiments and certainly on the spacecraft, not to mention everybody in the country
[00:37:26.81] that helped pay for it. So it's really great, we're just,
[00:37:30.86] big satsifaction that after this time of working on it's actually
[00:37:34.90] gonna come true and now we're now gonna have five years at least of learning about the Sun.
[00:37:38.92] Tom: I guess probably one of the first emotions
[00:37:42.93] I felt after launch was a relief that it was actually left the ground
[00:37:46.99] and it was of going to go do what it's supposed to, designed to do
[00:37:51.02] and and it was also a great excitement, relief as well
[00:37:55.07] to see the first light to see this wonderful instrument working and taking the
[00:37:59.08] flare spectrum as it's intended to do and actually have some solar
[00:38:03.09] flares. We came out of a very deep solar minimum lately and now
[00:38:07.13] the solar activity is starting to pick up and it's thanks to a lot of,
[00:38:11.16] about hundred engineers and scientists and students at University of
[00:38:15.19] Colorado and other institutions that made this a wonderful instrument.
[00:38:19.21] Dwayne: OK, ladies and gentlemen there you have it, we're gonna wrap
[00:38:23.22] up here. I again want to thank the Newsuem for being wonderful
[00:38:27.27] hosts and for our television media you
[00:38:31.32] can certainly get this information, anyone from the world can get this information on
[00:38:35.36] and you can also download
[00:38:39.38] the high-definition images. When
[00:38:43.40] it comes to studying the Sun, ladies and gentlemen, science never sleeps.
[00:38:47.43] Thank you all, have a great evening.
[00:38:51.49] (Applause)
[00:38:55.53] (Applause)
[00:38:59.57] (Applause)