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Instrument: SWEPAM : Solar Wind Electron, Proton, and Alpha Monitor
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The Solar Wind Electron, Proton, and Alpha Monitor (SWEPAM) on the Advanced
Composition Explorer (ACE) measures the solar wind plasma electron and ion
fluxes (rates of particle flow) as functions of direction and energy. These
data provide detailed knowledge of the solar wind conditions and internal state
every minute. SWEPAM also provides real-time solar wind observations which are
continuously telemetered to the ground for space weather purposes.

Electron and ion measurements are made with separate sensors. The ion sensor
measures particle energies between about 0.26 and 36 KeV, and the electron
sensor's energy range is between 1 and 1350 eV. Both sensors use electrostatic
analyzers with fan-shaped fields-of-view. The electrostatic analyzers measure
the energy per charge of each particle by bending their flight paths through
the system. The fields-of-view are swept across all solar wind directions by
the rotation of the spacecraft.

SWEPAM was built jointly by the Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories in
New Mexico. It is built from the spare solar wind electron and ion analyzers
from the Ulysses mission with selective modifications and improvements.


Online Resources

Instrument Logistics
Data Rate: 1 kbps
Instrument Start Date: 1997-08-25
Instrument Owner: Los Alamos National Laboratory
Sandia National Laboratory