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NASA's hot radiation mission

NASA is set to launch its Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) to explore the most intense areas of radiation around Earth

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On 24 August, NASA blasted twin satellites successfully into the radiation belts that surround Earth. The Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) will let researchers finally begin to unlock the mysteries of the Van Allen radiation belts, two doughnut-shaped rings around the Earth made up of very high-energy electrons and protons that can damage satellites and endanger humans during spaceflight, NASA says. Here's what the mission looks like.


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NASA's hot radiation mission

On 24 August, NASA blasted twin satellites successfully into the radiation belts that surround Earth. The Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) will let researchers finally begin to unlock the mysteries of the Van Allen radiation belts, two doughnut-shaped rings around the Earth made up of very high-energy electrons and protons that can damage satellites and endanger humans during spaceflight, NASA says. Here's what the mission looks like.


  • NASA's hot radiation mission
  • Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP)
  • Understanding the nature of radiation belts
  • Astrotech payload processing facility
  • Attaching the RBSP to a rocket
  • Ready for encapsulation
  • Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
  • Floating in space
  • Predicting hazardous events in the belts
  • The radiation belts
  • 8,400 to 36,000 miles from Earth
  • Close-up simulation of the twin RBSP satellites
  • Flying into the belts
  • Launching the satellites into the belt
  • Danger is when the inner radiation belt expands
  • History of the radiation belts
  • Many, many satellites
  • Working towards radiation-proof spacecraft


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