BackForwardInstrument:  MFE 

Instrument details
Acronym MFE
Full name Magnetic Field Experiment
Purpose To study the coupling of the solar wind and the magnetosphere through currents driven in the polar cusp (energy and momentum exchange with the magnetosphere at the cusp-magnetosheath interface)
Short description Two fluxgate magnetometers mounted on a 6 m boom. Magnetic field strengths detectable in the range 0.001-600 mGauss, and measured in three ranges: ± 700 nT, ± 5700 nT, and ± 47000 nT. Resolution: ±1 nT @ maximum of the dynamics
Background Part of a package of instruments to explore the Magnetosphere
Scanning Technique Travelling cross the Magnetosphere in a highly-elliptical orbit
Resolution N/A
Coverage / Cycle Large fraction of magnetosphere and ionosphere: sampling at 20 ms intervals
Mass Power Data Rate


Providing Agency NASA
Instrument Maturity Flown on an R&D satellite
Utilization Period: 1996 to 2008-04-15
Last update: 2016-03-21
Detailed characteristics
Satellites this instrument is flying on

Note: a red tag indicates satellites no longer operational, a green tag indicates operational satellites, a blue tag indicates future satellites

Instrument classification
  • Solar and space environment monitors
  • Field or radiowave sensor
WIGOS Subcomponents
  • Subcomponent 2
  • Magnetospheric energetic particles and magnetometers
  • Geomagnetic field sensor [in LEO and cross magnetosphere]
Mission objectives
Primary mission objectives
  • Geomagnetic field
Evaluation of Measurements

The following list indicates which measurements can typically be retrieved from this category of instrument. To see a full Gap Analysis by Variable, click on the respective variable.

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Note: * Primary mission objective.
VariableRelevance for measuring this variableOperational limitationsExplanation
Geomagnetic field*2 - very highNo specific limitation.Magnetosphere, vectorial, narrow dynamics, high resolution