Tandem Reconnection and Cusp Electrodynamics Reconnaissance Satellites (TRACERS)
Tandem Reconnection and Cusp Electrodynamics Reconnaissance Satellites (TRACERS) mission will consist of two identically instrumented satellites orbiting the Earth in a sun synchronous orbit with a 10s to 120s separation at the same ~500 km altitude. This orbital configuration allows TRACERS to traverse the low-altitude cusp many times throughout its two year mission lifetime. The primary science goal of TRACERS is to “discover how spatial or temporal variations in magnetic reconnection drive cusp dynamics”. TRACERS is well suited for studying this particular problem given the tandem orbital configuration which allows TRACERS the ability to distinguish between spatial vs. temporal variations, as well as the array of flight-proven instruments on each spacecraft. TRACERS is expected to launch late 2022.