One mission — the Extreme Ultraviolet High-Throughput Spectroscopic Telescope (EUVST) Epsilon — would observe how solar plasma and magnetic fields interact and drive solar activity like solar flares. Another proposed mission — Aeronomy at Earth: Tools for Heliophysics Exploration and Research (AETHER) — would observe the ionosphere, the area of our atmosphere that overlaps with the lower regions of space. It would gather observations from the International Space Station and from the ground to study how the ionosphere and the Earth’s thermosphere influence each other. The third mission — Electrojet Zeeman Imaging Explorer (EZIE) — would study the auroral electrojet, an electric current that circles through the atmosphere near the poles. It would use three small satellites (smallsats) to observe how the electrojets form and grow to better predict geomagnetic storms, which can cause the Earth’s magnetic fields to oscillate.

Each proposed mission will receive $400,000 to complete a nine-month mission concept study. One proposal will be selected to launch, and that mission will be capped at $55 million with funding from NASA’s Heliophysics Explorers’ program.

NASA has already invested heavil

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