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Tri-Axial Fluxgate and Search-coil Magnetometers

NSSDCA ID: 1996-049A-04

Mission Name: FAST
Principal Investigator:Dr. Charles W. Carlson


The FAST magnetic field instrumentation includes a DC fluxgate magnetometer and an AC search coil magnetometer. The fluxgate magnetometer is a three-axis instrument using highly stable low noise ring core sensors. It is boom-mounted at 2 m from the spacecraft body in a shielded housing. It provides magnetic field information from DC to 100 Hz to a 16-bit analog-to-digital converter. Time resolution is 2 ms and the sensitivity below 50 Hz close to 1 nT. The search coil magnetometer (also boom-mounted) uses a three axis sensor system that contains laminated permalloy cores, windings and preamplifiers. The design is based on the OGO-5 instrument with recent developments implemented on classified projects. The signals are further amplified in the electronics before analog-to-digital conversion. An AC magnetic field measurement is provided over the frequency range 10 Hz to 2.5 kHz with a time resolution of 0.1 ms and a frequency-dependent sensitivity between 10^-8 and 10^-10 nT^2/Hz.

Alternate Names

  • FAST/Magnetometer
  • MAG

Funding Agency

  • NASA-Office of Space Science (United States)


  • Space Physics: Ionospheric Studies
  • Space Physics: Magnetospheric Studies

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this experiment can be directed to: Dr. Dieter K. Bilitza



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Dr. Robert J. StrangewayCo-InvestigatorUniversity of California,
Dr. Richard C. ElphicCo-InvestigatorLos Alamos National
Dr. Charles W. CarlsonPrincipal InvestigatorUniversity of California,
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