Cusp Plasma Imaging Detector (CuPID) is a Cubesat – a class of very small research satellites – that was launched on September 27 along with Landsat-9. Its size does not surpass the loaf of bread. The purpose of this satellite is to study the interaction between the Earth’s magnetosphere (a protective bubble of magnetic field) and the Sun.
The CuPID will observe the lower-energy or soft X-rays emitted when solar particles collide with the Earth’s magnetic field. It took scientists nearly sixteen years to develop this satellite. It will seek to study the characteristics of the boundary of the Earth’s magnetic fields and understand why the energy sometimes penetrates it.


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