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Space weather refers to the dynamics of the Earth’s space environment due to solar disturbances that directly impact technological systems such as satellite navigation and communication systems, power grids, and groundandaircraftbased HF radio communication. The team will help design a sensor package for a space weather instrument suite for research and citizen science applications. The team will help design the packaging for the sensors, develop the webbased interface to connect the sensors to the database, visualization tools and other ancillary data to contribute to the study of space weather.

Space weather impacts are a natural hazard that disrupts technological systems that society greatly depends upon including communication, navigation and power distribution systems. Following the inspiration of the meteorology community and Weather Underground that connected backyard weather stations into the global weather system, this project will deploy magnetometers and other sensors everywhere to make a dense distributed array to enable new science and understanding of the Earth’s space environment. Commercializing a low-cost space weather sensor package would enable deployment at a wide range of locations including K12 schools and citizen scientist’s backyards. The UARTS Faculty Engineering/Arts Student Team (FEAST) will help design the packaging fora space weather sensor package for research and citizen science applications. The team will also help develop the web-based interface to connect the sensors to the database, visualization tools and other ancillary data to contribute to the study of space weather.

Meeting Time
TBD depending on SwUM (Spaceweather Underground Michigan) team’s schedule and pandemic/postpandemic meeting guidelines (virtual or in CSRB/B500 Magnetics Lab).

Students apply to a specific role on team as follows:

Prototype Hardware System (3 Students)

Preferred Skills: Embedded systems, sensors, system characterization (power, communication, magnetometer, GPS)

Likely Majors: SPACE, CLIMATE, EE, ME, CE, CS, ASTRO

Plug & Play Instrument Package (3 Students)

Preferred Skills: Embedded systems, design, UX/UI

Likely Majors: ARTDES, ARCH, IOE, ME, SI, EARTH, ENVIRON

Web & App User Interface & Database Back-end (3 Students)

Preferred Skills: Web design, app design, UX/UI, databases

Likely Majors: ARTDES, PAT, SI, CS, IOE, EARTH, ENVIRON

Faculty Project Lead


Mark Moldwin 
is an Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering and Applied Physics within the University of Michigan’s Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering. He is currently the Faculty Director of MEngin, a program within UM’s MSTEM Academy to support undergraduates academically and professionally, the Executive Director of NASA’s Michigan Space GrantConsortium and President of the American Geophysical Union’s (AGU) Education Section. He is the principleinvestigator on several NASA, NSF and DOD projects (including the NASA Artemis Lunar Gateway HERMES project, NSF’s iMAGS project, and the Office of Naval Research’s SENSOR project). He has been recognized for his research, teaching and service by numerous awards and is currently the 20192020 USNorway Fulbright Arctic Chair.

Students: 9

Likely Majors: ARCH, ARTDES, ASTRO, CE, CLIMATE, CS, EARTH, EE, ENVIRON, IOE, ME, PAT, SI, SPACE

Summer Opportunity: Summer research fellowships may be available for qualifying students.

Citizenship Requirements: This project is open to all students on campus.

IP/NDA: Students who successfully match to this project team will be required to sign an Intellectual Property (IP) Agreement prior to participation in January 2021.

Course Substitutions: CoE Honors