Science Goals

MMS Payload
  • Hot Plasma Instruments
  • Energetic Particles


MMS Quick Facts
 • Launched 3/12/2015
 • Solving Magnetospheric
    Reconnection, and
    Turbulence (SMART)
    is the MMS Science
 • Southwest Research
    Institute (SWRI)
    is leading the
    science investigation
 • Mission duration:
    2yrs. 6mos.
 • Four spacecraft will fly
    in tetrahedral formation
    through regions of
    the magnetosphere,
    each collecting data
    with identical suites
    of instrumentation.

Related Links
   - NASA MMS status report   
   - MMS at SWRI (SMART lead)
   - MMS at Rice (Education)
   - MMS at LASP (Sys.Ops.)

nasa logo

Science Payload on MMS

The SMART payload on MMS is made up of three instrument groups: Hot Plasma, Energetic Particles, and FIELDS. In addition, the payload includes two Active Spacecraft Potential Control Devices (ASPOC) and a Central Instrument Data Processor (CDIP). The ASPOCs neutralize the electrical potential of the spacecraft. The CIDP provides the interface between instruments and the spacecraft subsystem. The ASPOCs are being developed at the Institut fuer Weltraumforschung of the Austrian Academy of Sciences; the CIDP is being developed at Southwest Research Institute.

instrument composite with instruments
Hot Plasma Instruments Energetic Particles Instruments FIELDS
The FIELDS investigation is an advanced suite of six sensors measuring critical electric and magnetic fields in and around reconnection regions. Investigation is led by University of New Hampshire.

The four spacecraft will be built, integrated, and tested at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, which is also repsonsible for mission operations. Science operations, planning, and instrument command sequence development will be done at the MMS Science Operations Cener (SOC) located at the University of Colorado's Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics in Boulder, Colorado.