Relocation of the Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor (ASIM) on the International Space Station
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The Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor (ASIM) is a 314-kilogram external payload attached to the Columbus module of the International Space Station (ISS). It was developed by the European Space Agency (ESA) and the main objective of ASIM is the study of the upper layers of the atmosphere and in particular, phenomena known as Transient Luminous Events and Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes. On board since April 2018, ASIM has produced outstanding science. ASIM mission was supposed to end in December 2021 when another payload was programmed to use its location. With its excellent health and science output, the idea was put forward to relocate ASIM somewhere else on the station instead of simply removing and trashing it. With very little lead time, the ground teams managed to overcome all the hurdles to make this relocation possible. From a nadir viewing payload, designed to monitor the top of thunderstorms, ASIM has become a limb viewing one since January 2022. Remarkably, a limb viewing instrument was in the original plans for ASIM, but was descoped for financial reasons. The science produced at this new location is therefore quite complementary to the original location.
CitationDufey, J.; Voet, K.; Michel, A.; Kruglanski, M.; De Smet, L.; Jacobs, C. (2023). Relocation of the Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor (ASIM) on the International Space Station. , SpaceOps 2023: 17th International Conference on Space Operations, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 6-10 March 2023, ID#466,