SCSU project sent into space
Tuesday, May 1, 2007
An innovative instrument developed by professors at SCSU and the University of Wisconsin-Madison in collaboration with the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory was launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., into low earth orbit aboard Space Test Program Satellite-1 this spring.
Primary payload of the satellite was the Spatial Heterodyne Imager for Mesospheric Radicals (SHIMMER) instrument, a rugged, high-resolution ultraviolet spectrometer designed to image the earth’s atmosphere. The instrument is not only a third the size of earlier instruments in mass and volume, but its higher sensitivity also allows for seven times faster sampling of the atmosphere.
The SHIMMER effort at SCSU is led by Physics, Astronomy and Engineering Science Professor John Harlander. He and his undergraduate students contributed to the project in numerous ways, including the design and testing of prototypes at SCSU, the detailed optical design of SHIMMER and development of alignment and data analysis techniques. Harlander is participating in data analysis now that SHIMMER is in space and operational.