Governments around the world have considered space of vital national interest for more than a half century, devoting resources to exploration and scientific research. Atmospheric and Environmental Research (AER) is a key partner in government space research, with a particular focus on planetary atmospheres and the near-Earth magnetosphere.
AER is a leader in the theoretical modeling of the local and extended atmospheres of planets, satellites and comets, furthering our understanding of their relevant physical mechanisms and applying this understanding to the explanation of observational data. These studies are important to achieve a comprehensive knowledge of the basic properties of these bodies and the many fascinating interactions among the atmospheres, ionospheres, planetary magnetospheres, the solar wind and the solar radiation field.
AER assists government agencies in sensor data analysis, satellite orbit determination and draft studies, and sensor and system trade studies with emphasis on environmental impacts and mitigation.
AER provides research, modeling and data analysis for climatological descriptions of the near-Earth magnetosphere, including the ionosphere, plasmasphere, magnetic fields and radiation belts. In addition, AER supports nowcasting and forecasting of space weather and upper atmospheric conditions that will affect commercial and military users and system operations through our support of the Air Force Research Laboratory Communication/Navigation and Outage Forecasting Satellite (AFRL C/NOFS) data center.